Minnesota goalie Josh Harding took a significant step in his recovery from a broken ankle on Monday, practicing for the first time since training camp.
“It was good getting back out there,” Harding said, per the team website. “It was great seeing all the guys again and getting that competition back.”
Harding, 30, is currently suspended after suffering a “non-hockey” injury in September — per reports, the veteran goalie was hurt kicking a wall following an altercation with a teammate, drawing the ire of both head coach Mike Yeo and GM Chuck Fletcher.
Subsequently, Harding hasn’t played a game all season and because of his suspension designation, his $1.9 million hit doesn’t count against Minnesota’s cap. As such, it doesn’t sound as though the club is rushing him back into action — on Monday, Harding didn’t say if there was a timetable for his return, mostly offering blanket statements about feeling good and how happy he was to get back on the ice.
With Harding out the Wild’s goaltending has been primarily handled by Darcy Kuemper, who’s started 10 of the club’s 13 games while going 6-3-1 with a 2.03 GAA and .913 save percentage.