Matt Boldy, Marco Rossi and Adam Beckman all were all on-the-bubble candidates for making the MInnesota Wild roster when training camp opened in late September.
But, to the likely dismay of a number of Wild fans, the NHL debuts for all three won’t come at the start of the regular season.
The Wild announced on Saturday morning that Boldy is expected to miss between four to six weeks with a fractured ankle that he suffered in Thursday’s preseason matchup at home against the Chicago Blackhawks.
Just a few hours later, the Wild announced that both Beckman and Rossi had been reassigned to Iowa along with defenseman Calen Addison. The moves were made as the Wild reduced their training camp roster to 24 players and allowed for goalie Andrew Hammond to be recalled.
Michael Russo of The Athletic reported that Brandon Duhaime earned the final forward spot going into the Wild’s opening game on Oct. 15 at Anaheim.
Hammond is needed as the Wild also announced that goalie Cam Talbot would not be available for the final preseason game on Saturday night in Chicago due to a personal matter. Kaapo Kahkohnen will get the start and Hammond will be the backup.
Boldy, who was selected No. 12 in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, was injured in the third period of the win over Chicago when his leg got tangled with Blackhawks defenseman Connor Murphy. Boldy needed assistance to get off the ice and down the tunnel into the locker room.
“It’s disappointing, clearly,” Wild coach Dean Evason said of Boldy during a media availability session on Saturday. “He’s had a good camp … but (injuries) happen. He’ll recover. He’s young and he’ll heal up. We’ll get him going in his pro career.
“He’s big, strong, great hands, willingness to get to the net and attitude is fantastic ” Evason said. “He was doing all the right things to play professional hockey if it was here or if it was in Iowa.”
Beckman made a splash in training camp as he showed his willingness to shoot the puck but also put it in the net. He had the game-winning goal in overtime against the Blackhawks on Thursday.
He also demonstrated that he was a fit with the locker room.
“He’s very vocal, he’s very energetic,” Evason said of Beckman. “It’s not like someone is going over to him saying, ‘Hey, you’re a rookie, you can’t fricken talk like that. You go sit in your corner.’ Those days are done. Those days are over. It’s not a major situation (on a team), it’s not an issue that a guy has life, that a guy has energy, is vocal and wants to make the hockey club.”
A start in Des Moines, Iowa, is probably the best thing for Rossi right now. The Austrian native was selected ninth overall by the Wild in the 2020 NHL Draft.
Russo wrote that:
"Guerin did not want to rush him into the NHL after not playing much meaningful hockey the last 18 months in large part to being diagnosed with myocarditis after contracting COVID-19. He just needs games and the AHL will allow that."