Ryan Donato had been told he would be a healthy scratch for the Wild’s game on Tuesday night in Pittsburgh so he did what any player would do. He grabbed something to eat beforehand and then jumped on the exercise bike to begin working out with the game on the television in the locker room.
That’s when Donato realized something was wrong. Rick Bronwell, the Wild’s assistant equipment manager, sprinted into the locker room, according to Michael Russo of The Athletic, and told the winger to suit up. That was because Wild defenseman Greg Pateryn had been removed from the bench by the on-ice officials because of an error made by Bruce Boudreau.
The Wild coach had listed Pateryn as a scratch on the lineup card by accident and listed Donato as being in the lineup. That left the Wild with five defenseman in what became a 7-3 loss. Donato, who hadn’t gone through warmups, did not get a shift until late in the second period. “It felt like I was in a dream,” Donato told reporters. “It was kind of a haze. It was a crazy feeling.”
Boudreau accepted responsibility afterward. “It’s all my fault,” he said. “I do the lineups first thing in the morning, and the first thing that goes down is the lowest number. I put Donato [No. 6] on and forgot Pateryn [No. 29]. And when I looked and the thing was full, I figured I did it right. But it’s a dumb mistake. Never done that before. To start the game with five ‘D,’ I take full blame.”
The loss was the Wild’s fourth in a row and was their sixth in the past seven games. The Wild are now eight points out of the second wild card spot in the Western Conference.