The busiest week in the off-season begins today for the Minnesota Wilderness as the team opens five days of camp activity to help build its roster for the start of the 2023-24 season.
The defending Midwest Division champions will be holding its main camp plus a goalie camp this week at Wessman Arena in Superior. The Wilderness was originally set to hold its camps at Northwoods Credit Union Arena in Cloquet, but had to find an alternate facility due to a mechanical issue with the Cloquet rink’s ice system.
The first two days focus on goalies. Twenty-four goaltenders will be taking shots Tuesday and Wednesday in a chance to show off and refine their skills. The top 16 will be invited to the main camp beginning Thursday.
The main camp will feature eight teams in a game format from which players will be selected for two all-star contests on July 16. A young guns game is slated for 10 a.m., while an all-star game will follow at 1 p.m. The Wilderness coaches, general manager David Boitz and its scouting staff will use the camp to select who will be invited to the team’s pre-season training camp beginning Aug. 21.
About 140 players will skate in the main camp. It will include players returning from the 2022-23 season, new tenders and players selected in last month’s NAHL draft. The NAHL mandates that all teams reduce their rosters to 25 players by Sept. 1.
The public is welcome to attend all camp on-ice events at no charge.