Feb 3, 2014, 8:27 PM EDT
While it’s unclear if he’ll even get one Minnesota Wild game in before playing for Finland in the 2014 Winter Olympics, Mikko Koivu‘s goal remains to be a contributor in Sochi. The Wild appear uncertain if he’ll reach that goal, though.
The 30-year-old skated on his own on Monday, yet that didn’t seem to push head coach Mike Yeo in one direction or another regarding whether he believes Koivu can suit up for Finland.
“We know how bad he wants to go,” Yeo said. “For us personally, first and foremost, if he’s not physically capable, of course we wouldn’t want him to go. But at the same time we’d be very proud and honored to have him go over there.”
Sending a guy who might not be 100 percent overseas might seem like an easy idea for NHL teams to dismiss, but Yeo spins Koivu’s potential Olympic participation in a positive way, noting that he could potentially shake off rust in the process. He hasn’t played since Jan. 4 since injuring his ankle, which required surgery.
Again, Koivu was adamant that he would be willing to play for Finland even if he doesn’t get any time in before flying over.
“It always matters (to play ahead of time), but if not so be it,” Koivu said, per the Pioneer Press. “I think in my situation being off right now, not playing any games, it’s going to be good for me to play some games and practice with the team first off.”
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