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James Sheppard looking to take the next step for the Wild

From Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

“I can handle it, but it’s not going to come in one year,” Sheppard said.

“Next year I’m not going to have the best year of my career. It’s going to come in little increments. I’m not going to try to be better than Mikko Koivu. I’m not going to try to be better than Marian Gaborik.

“But I’m going to try the best I can to improve and take charge, and I know that’s going to create more goals, create more assists and get my ice time up.”

Read the entire article here.

The Wild is certainly going to need Sheppard to improve on his 2007/08 campaign. The team is in dire need of production down the middle, so if Sheppard provided them with some unexpected production, the team may not have to look elsewhere during the season for center reinforcements.