The Minnesota Wild are close to getting captain Mikko Koivu back from ankle surgery. The pivot hasn’t played since January 4, but could be ready to return soon if he continues to improve in practice. Michael Russo of the Minnesota Star Tribune reported that Koivu had another “good day” on Tuesday, and that a strong practice on Wednesday could lead to a return on Thursday against the Edmonton Oilers.
That’s great news for a Wild team that will be looking to continue the strong play that they took into the Olympic break.
With a 6-2-2 record in their last 10, Minnesota climbed to fourth place in the Central division, but still sits 10 points back of the Colorado Avalanche for the third seed in the division. The Wild are holding onto the top Wild Card seed in the Western Conference, but with teams like the Dallas Stars, Phoenix Coyotes and Vancouver Canucks looking up at them, they’ll need to make every point count.
Koivu is the underrated center that makes Minnesota’s offense click. The 30-year-old wasn’t able to participate in the Olympics for Finland, instead opting to continue to recover from his ankle injury. With 35 points in 44 games, Koivu is still third on the team in scoring despite sitting out a handful of games due to the injury.
If he’s not able to return to action on Thursday, his next chance will come on February 28 against the Canucks.
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