ST. PAUL (AP) -- After picking up a loose puck in front of the net, goaltender Derek Gustafson tried to make a pass to one of his White teammates during a training camp scrimmage Monday. But the puck slipped awkwardly off his stick and an opposing player from the Green team poked it in for a goal.
"Bad timing I guess," Gustafson said afterward.
Bad timing for the goal, and bad timing for Gustafson, one of many players scrapping for a spot on the Minnesota Wild roster.
The Wild expected to slash their 68-player training camp roster in half by Monday night, not leaving much time for the 30 or so players fighting for the few, if any, available lockers. Unlike their two previous training camps, the Wild roster was practically set coming into the 2002-03 season.
That makes the competition at this year's camp more fierce and mistakes like Gustafson's more critical.
"Everybody's going to make mistakes. If you keep thinking about those mistakes, it's going to ruin the rest of your day. So you just gotta move on and just start over," Gustafson said.
There will be a few differences. Stacy Roest and Aaron Gavey, two original team members, are gone, for instance. But with the additions of Cliff Ronning and Bill Muckalt, the team isn't likely to use minor leaguers to fill those spots.
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