Gaborik Returns, Koivu Hurt in Wild Win
However, as is typical of Minnesota's season, there had to be some bad mixed in with the good. Forward and team captain Mikko Koivu left the game in the first period with a knee injury.
The Wild haven't commented officially on Koivu, only to say that he's questionable for the upcoming road trip. The Wild head to New York Tuesday for a date with the Rangers, then they play the Islanders on Wednesday. Following that, they head to western Canada.
As for Gaborik, he played just a shade under 18 minutes, and was credited with six shots on goal. He had a couple nice chances, including one on the power play in the third period, but was held off the scoreboard. During his postgame press conference, Wild head coach Jacques Lemaire sounded encouraged by Gaborik's play, saying he "could have scored a couple of goals".
The win pulls Minnesota within a point of idle Nashville for the final playoff spot in the West. Both teams have ten games left in the regular season.
Gaborik's return is huge for Minnesota, but losing Koivu for an extended period of time leaves them back at square one, likely without enough offensive punch to make the playoffs.