Minnesota Wild fans clamored for Matt Boldy to be inserted into the lineup last year and it was close to being a reality late in the year.
The 20-year-old forward and former Boston College standout was part of a team skate the morning of Game 6 of the Wild’s first-round playoff series against the Vegas Golden Knights and also went through pregame warm-ups. However, in the end, the Wild went with experience over Boldy
“(Wild managment members) were making decisions that were best for the team at that point.” Boldy said in a media availability session earlier this week during the Tom Kurvers Prospect Showcase in St. Paul. “It’s something that you look at and you take from it. It definitely pushes you a lot in the summer.”
NHL teams open training camp this coming week and Boldy will have an opportunity to make the Wild roster this season. But the Milford, Massachusetts, native is not looking too far ahead.
“I’m going in (to camp) with confidence. That’s kind of how I approach things,” Boldy said. “The biggest thing is to go out there, show what I have and play my best hockey. As long as I do that, it comes down to what (Wild management) want and what they think is best for me.
“I think the biggest thing for me is to show up every day and try and make an impression stay in moment living in moment not looking too far ahead.”
Boldy said the dozen games he played with the Iowa Wild and the time he had as a member of Minnesota’s “Black Aces” during the postseason gave him added comfort and confidence coming into camp compared to a year ago.
He also likes the strides he made in the development of his overall game after he spent the majority of the summer in Boston working out and skating with a group of about 20 other NHL players.
“I’ve been pretty lucky to be able to work out with them, skate with them the last few summers,” Boldy said. “You learn stuff every summer and those guys help you too. I think skating with and working out with guys like Kevin Hayes, Zach Sanford and Conor Garland , they know what it takes.”
Boldy and 19-year-old Marco Rossi are two of the prospects that have generated the most buzz among Wild fans for the past few years. The two gave a glimpse of what they could do in the NHL together as Boldy assisted on a Rossi goal during a scrimmage against the Chicago Blackhawks prospects on Friday night at the TRIA Rink.
The two teams are scheduled to play a second and final game on Sunday afternoon to close out the Prospect Showcase. The game will be streamed on the Wild’s You Tube page.
Boldy said he had not met Rossi until about a week ago and was immediately impressed with both the Austrian’s footwork and overall hockey IQ.
“He sees the ice really well and then he’s an unbelievable skater which I think is his biggest asset,” Boldy said. “He can turn on a dime and he gets away from everyone. He plays really strong as well. Combine all those together along with how smart he is, it makes it pretty easy to go out there and make plays with him.”
It’s definitely a scenario that Wild fans have envisioned since Boldy and Rossi were drafted in the first round in 2019 and ’20, respectively. It’s one they wouldn’t mind getting used to as well.