Tag: Mike Rupp


Wild send Justin Falk to Rangers for Benn Ferriero, pick


The Wild and Rangers swapped negotiating rights on Sunday, as Minnesota traded Justin Falk to New York for Benn Ferriero and a sixth-rounder in 2014. Both players are restricted free agents in need of new contracts.

Falk, 24, has solidified himself as an everyday NHL player during the last two seasons. He played in most of the 2013 regular season (36 games), although his ice time plummeted from 2011-12’s 19:30 minutes per game to just 13:13.

Ferriero, 26, played in just four games with the New York Rangers after spending parts of the previous three seasons at the NHL level with the San Jose Sharks. He spent most of this campaign in the AHL.

The two teams are familiar with trading depth players with each other, as they completed a trade involving Mike Rupp and Darroll Powe in 2012.

Richards: ‘I didn’t feel normal all season’

Brad Richards

Just as head coach John Tortorella worried it might, the lockout may indeed have screwed up Brad Richards.

At least, that’s what Richards hinted at today as the Rangers met with the media for the final time this year after being eliminated from the playoffs by the Boston Bruins.

“I didn’t feel normal all season,” said Richards, who was made a healthy scratch for Games 4 and 5 versus the Bruins.

The 33-year-old center also said he was in shape and ready to play in September. But, of course, the season didn’t start until much later.

Unlike many other NHLers, Richards didn’t play overseas during the work stoppage.

“I worry about our older guys like Richie and [Mike Rupp] who aren’t playing [in Europe],” Tortorella told The New York Post on Oct. 23. “It’s tough and they need to stay on top of it.”

Richards had 34 points in 46 regular-season games and just one goal in 10 playoff appearances.

To be clear, Richards wasn’t using the lockout as an excuse. He says he’s got to start over and will begin training in a week.

As for the buyout speculation, he said there’s nothing he can do about that, but that he didn’t sign in New York to play a year and a half. Whatever management decides, he’ll be playing hockey somewhere next year.

Related: Three reasons the Rangers might buy out Richards

Video: Rupp’s struggle to bench shows what playoffs are all about

Mike Rupp injury

When you think of what it’s like to play in the playoffs, you think of winning at any cost. For Minnesota’s Mike Rupp, that’s just what it was like.

During the third period of the Wild’s 2-1 overtime loss to Chicago, Rupp got mixed up with Blackhawks defenseman Nick Leddy. The two went into the boards with Rupp coming out worse for the wear. While hobbled, thanks to losing his skate blade, there was Rupp trying desperately to get back to the bench while his team was shorthanded.

A vision like this is the sort of thing that lasts through the playoffs to show what it’s like to be part of a playoff team.

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Wild owner Leipold: ‘We think our team is very much like the Kings’

Leipold AP

Say this about Craig Leipold — he’s not short on confidence.

Two days after Minnesota made the postseason for the first time since 2008 — as the Western Conference’s No. 8 seed —  the owner said his club reminded him of another eighth-seeded club:

Last year’s Los Angeles Kings.

More, from Leipold’s interview with Bob Sansevere of the Pioneer Press:

BS: In every sport, there have been teams that struggle at the end of a regular season and then have renewed life. Is that what you’re expecting to happen?

CL: There is no better example than what happened last year with the Los Angeles Kings.

The L.A. Kings only won four of their last 11 games and they lost their last two games. Still got into the playoffs and end up winning the Stanley Cup. We don’t have to go very far to find a model. We think our team is very much like the Kings. We go hot. We go cold. We did it all season.

Now we’ve got to go hot, and we think we can.

To build on this theme, recent success of No. 8 seeds actually goes beyond Los Angeles:

— In 2012, Ottawa took the New York Rangers to Game 7.

— In 2011, Chicago took Vancouver to Game 7.

— In 2010, Montreal made it to the Eastern Conference finals.

— In 2009, Anaheim beat San Jose in Round 1.

But there’s a problem in comparing this year’s Minnesota team with last year’s Los Angeles team, and that problem is playoff experience.

Specifically, how the Wild fall short of the Kings.

Only Zach Parise, Torrey Mitchell, Mike Rupp, Devin Setoguchi, Brett Clark and Matt Cullen have made it past the second round in their careers.

The likes of Tom Gilbert, Kyle Brodziak, Cal Clutterbuck, Charlie Coyle, Justin Falk, Jared Spurgeon, Jonas Brodin and Clayton Stoner will all be making their postseason debuts.

The Kings, meanwhile, went into last postseason with four Stanley Cup winners (Justin Williams, Dustin Penner, Rob Scuderi, Colin Fraser), five more Cup finalists (Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Simon Gagne, Matt Greene, Jarret Stoll) and an experienced playoff vet in Willie Mitchell.

Despite this, Leipold remains confident in his group.

“This is a whole new season,” he explained. “It’s the hot team with the hot goalie and hot players that will now start to rise. We think we’ve got a chance to do that.”

Wild’s Pominville (upper body) won’t play against Oilers

Newly acquired forward Jason Pominville #29 of the Minnesota Wild skates during warm-up prior to the NHL game against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on April 4, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.
(April 3, 2013 - Source: Victor Decolongon/Getty Images North America)

Minnesota forward Jason Pominville won’t be in the lineup tonight as the Wild look to clinch a playoff berth against Edmonton.

Pominville, 30, is listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury stemming from a hit by Kings captain Dustin Brown on Tuesday.

According to the Star-Tribune’s Mike Russo, the former Buffalo Sabres captain says he’s “OK” and the Wild won’t say if he suffered a concussion.

Pominville does have a history of head injuries — in 2010, he missed nine games with a concussion after taking a nasty hit from Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson.

As for tonight’s lineup, Mike Rupp will draw back in and Torrey Mitchell will jump up to fill Pominville’s spot on the third line with Pierre-Marc Bouchard and Kyle Brodziak.