The Wild will need to have a short memory after yesterday afternoon as it faces off with the Red Wings once again, this time in Detroit.
Minnesota finishes off its 11th of 13 back-to-backs this season and the backend of a home-and-home with Detroit tonight. The two clashed yesterday in Saint Paul with Detroit edging the Wild, 3-2.
Tonight, expect to see Ilya Bryzgalov get the nod in net. He owns a 9-8-5 record against the Red Wings in 22 starts, with a 2.77 goals against average and a .921 save percentage. Though, the Wild did hold an optional morning skate today so we won’t be able to confirm anything — including lines — until warmups.
Wild Head Coach Mike Yeo continued to tinker with his forward lines yesterday during the game, notably moving Charlie Coyle from centering the third line, with Dany Heatley and Erik Haula on his wings, to the wing alongside Mikko Koivu and Matt Moulson. Justin Fontaine dropped down to play with Kyle Brodziak and Matt Cooke while Erik Haula moved back to center with Dany Heatley and Nino Niederreiter beside him.
This morning the Wild recalled defenseman Jonathon Blum and forward Stephane Veilleux from the Iowa Wild. The pair will add depth to their respective roles — particularly Blum who will aid a blue line that has been struck by a pair of injuries this week. Both Keith Ballard and Clayton Stoner did not make the trip to Detroit due to injuries.
In yesterday’s 3-2 loss, Darcy Kuemper made 27 saves on the afternoon with Koivu and Coyle netting the Wild’s goals. Coyle’s came on a penalty shot at the start of the third period after he was tripped up from behind by Johan Franzen on a breakaway.
Meanwhile, netminder Jimmy Howard backstopped the Wings with 28 saves while Brendan Smith, David Legwand and Gustav Nyquist put Detroit on the board.
Meet The Wings
The Red Wings have been plagued with injuries this season. So much so that seven players have made their NHL debuts with the team this season. That’s the most Detroit has had since the 2005-06 season.
The Wings are led by Henrik Zetterberg’s 48 points (16-32=48) this season. David Legwand trails him with 47 (12-35=47). Gustav Nyquist is Detroit’s goal-leader with 21.
If You’re Going
If you really want to get your hands on some Red Wings helmet stickers, be sure to get there early as the first 5,000 fans get some.
The Wild will wear its WHITE sweaters tonight.
Mikko Koivu has 14 points (2-12=14) in his last 15 games and is T-1st on Minnesota in assists this season with 41 points (9-41=41) in 54 games.
Here’s how the Wild looked Saturday afternoon at the end of the game:
With both Stoner and Ballard back in Minnesota, Blum will step in on the blue line:
Between The Pipes
While we can't confrim until later, expect to see Brygalov in net. He is 9-8-5 with a 2.77 GAA and a .921 SV% in 22 starts.
Yeo Quote Of The Day
We’re still trying to find the right mix. … We have to make sure we get the right things going here. But we’re not that far off. We lost this game tonight, but there’s a lot of things that could have swung this game the other direction.
-Yeo on last night’s outing
View From The Pressbox
Honorary State Of Hockey Resident
G Jimmy Howard was U.S. Olympic teammates with Parise and Suter in the 2014 Sochi Games. Mike Babcock was the head coach with the Anaheim Ducks from 2002-04 with Wild GM Chuck Fletcher who served as the Director of Hockey Operations and assistant GM with the Ducks from 2002-06.
Yesterday was the first time since March 8 that a member of PPG Line did not tally a point and just the second contest they were held without a point since Feb. 4.
Wild at Red Wings will be broadcast nationally in high definition on NBCSN with a start time at 6:30 p.m. The game can be heard on KFAN 100.3 FM or online at Wild.com.
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