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GAMEDAY: Wild at Canucks

Monday, 03.18.2013 / 4:09 PM

Mike Doyle - Managing Editor

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GAMEDAY: Wild at Canucks
Minnesota Wild vs. Vancouver Canucks

Minnesota Wild (15-10-2: 32 points, 3rd in Western Conference, 1st in Northwest Division) vs. Vancouver Canucks (13-8-6: 32 points, 7th in Western Conference, 2nd in Northwest Division)

With less than half of this compacted, shortened season remaining, the jockeying for playoff positioning has begun. The Minnesota Wild sits atop the Northwest Division, but is tied in points with tonight’s opponent, the Vancouver Canucks. Both teams have played the same amount of games, so the winner of tonight's contest will gain control of the Division.

In the last meeting between these two teams, the Wild won decisively at Xcel Energy Center, 4-2, on March 10. However, the Canucks has a 2-1 lead in the season series, taking the first two meetings, 4-1 (Jan. 7) in Minnesota and 2-1 (Jan. 12) in Vancouver. The game will be broadcast at 9 p.m. State of Hockey Time on FOX Sports North Plus. A handy viewing channel guide can be found, here.

Tonight, the Wild looks to earn its third-straight win for the first time this season. The club has won back-to-back games seven times this year. With a win tonight, it would be the team’s third-straight road win for the first time since a seven-game road-winning streak Nov. 13 to Dec. 10, 2011.

The Wild earned a 6-4 victory in Colorado against the Avalanche on Saturday. Eleven players earned points in the game with Devin Setoguchi leading the way, scoring twice and adding an assist. Defenseman Ryan Suter and RW Pierre-Marc Bouchard each had a goal and an assist. Minnesota had a four-goal first period outburst, with Cal Clutterbuck and Kyle Brodziak both amongst the goal scorers. 

The Canucks suffered a 5-2 home loss against the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday. Alexandre Burrows scored the games opening and closing goals for the Canucks. Roberto Luongo made 21 saves in the loss.

UPDATED: Jason Zucker will be in the lineup tonight for Mike Rupp. He'll skate alongside Torrey Mitchell and Zenon Konopka.
Meet The Nucks If You're Going
Daniel Sedin moved into third place on the Canucks all-time scoring list. He reached 734 points (284-450-734) in 874 games, surpassing Trevor Linden at 733 points. His brother Henrik set a new franchise record for scoring (757), surpassing Markus Naslund, on Feb. 15 against Dallas. Henrik now sits at 773 career points (178-595-773). Each home game during the season, the Canucks Centre for BC Hockey, in partnership with BC Hockey, will host one minor hockey player, between the ages of eight and thirteen, who will lead the Canucks onto the ice and stand join the team for the national anthems.

The Wild will wear its WHITE sweaters tonight.
Who's Hot Gameday Media
Matt Cullen has nine assists in his last nine games and is fourth on the Wild with 18 points (3-15=18) this year. He also has tallied an assist in four-straight games. The Wild is 3-0-0 this season when Cullen has two or more points.

Fans can guess who's going to be hot with the Wild's HotBox Fantasy Challenge presented by the Pioneer Press for a chance to win great prizes.
 
Wild.com
Game Notes | Transactions | Injury Report | Lighthouse | @mnwildLIVE | @mnwild
WildTV
Yeo Pregame | Parise Pregame | Brodziak Pregame | Zucker Pregame |
PONDcast
Wild vs. VAN |
Probably Wild Lineup Between The Pipes
Zucker will replace Rupp on the fourth line:

Parise – Koivu – Coyle
Bouchard – Cullen – Setoguchi
Heatley – Brodziak – Clutterbuck
Mitchell – Konopka – Zucker

D-pairs will remain the same:

Suter – Brodin
Spurgeon – Stoner
Falk – Gilbert


Niklas Backstrom is 10-3-1 in his last 14 games, posting a 2.20 GAA, a .917 SV% and allowing two goals or less nine times in that span. Backstrom has started 11 of the team’s last 12 games.
View From The Press Box
We’re going into a battle for first place tomorrow and it’s important that we go with our starting goalie. We want to give ourselves the best chance to win (this) game.

- Yeo on riding goaltender Niklas Backstrom
If the lineup remains the same, defensemen Brett Clark and Nate Prosser will be tonight's healthy scratches. 
Forward Mike Rupp will be the lone forward scratched.

Goaltender Josh Harding (treatment for multiple sclerosis) is on Injured Reserve.
Honorary State of Hockey Resident Worthless Stat
D Andrew Alberts (Minneapolis) and D Keith Ballard (Baudette) are Minnesota natives. Ballard played three seasons at the University of Minnesota (2001-04). Raymond played in two seasons with the University of Minnesota-Duluth (2005-07). C Andrew Ebbett appeared in 49 games with Minnesota in 2009-10. D Cam Barker skated in 71 games with the Wild in parts of two seasons (2009-11). Minnesota has scored the opening goal in seven straight games, tied for longest stretch in franchise history according to Elias Sports Bureau. The Wild had twice before scored first in seven straight – the last time 10/10-10/24/07.
Broadcast Info In Case You Missed It
Wild at Vancouver will be broadcast locally in high definition on FOX Sports North Plus with a start time at 9:00 p.m. Channel guide for viewing areas can be found, here. The game can be heard on KFAN 100.3 FM or online at Wild.com.

Click here to receive Minnesota Wild broadcast alerts/game day previews each Wild Game day.
   
Wild.com
Prospects Report - March 13 | Wild Signs Defenseman Clark | Five Takeaways vs. COL | Realignment Approved | Wild Acquires Conditional Pick
WildTV
Yeo - March 17 | Yeo Postgame - March 16 | Bouchard Postgame - March 16 | Clutterbuck Postgame - March 16 | Setoguchi Postgame - March 16
PONDcast
Wild vs COL - March 16 | Prospects PONDcast
Photo Gallery
Wild vs COL - March 16 |
2012-2013 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 18 '13 MIN 3 at VAN 1 C. Coyle
Mar 10 '13 VAN 2 at MIN 4 J. Spurgeon
Feb 12 '13 MIN 1 at VAN 2 J. Hansen
Feb 07 '13 VAN 4 at MIN 1 C. Higgins
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. Koivu2861723+11601
R. Suter2822123-31620
Z. Parise28111122+41252
M. Cullen2841519+61000
D. Setoguchi289918+81832
D. Heatley288816-11631
P. Bouchard233710+3802
T. Gilbert26369-81210
J. Spurgeon19347+2222
K. Brodziak28426-11600
M. Granlund19156-3400
J. Zucker12415+5600
C. Clutterbuck22325-61500
C. Coyle17325+1902
J. Brodin25235+1810
C. Stoner28055+22000
T. Mitchell26224-51201
M. Rupp26123+04100
J. Falk24022-52200
M. Scandella6101-1400
Z. Konopka22000-27100
N. Prosser12000+3200
D. Powe8000+1900
J. Larsson1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
N. Backstrom2314-7-2526112.34.915
D. Kuemper41-2-081052.22.924
J. Harding41-1-07612.92.885
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
H. Sedin2881927+161811
D. Sedin2881725+10822
A. Burrows287916+103410
J. Hansen277916+6602
A. Edler2851116-22220
M. Raymond287714+3840
D. Hamhuis2821214-3800
C. Higgins287411-4401
Z. Kassian26538-72520
K. Bieksa21527+43010
J. Garrison28437+71601
M. Lapierre28246+02500
J. Schroeder23235-5411
C. Tanev28145+4801
R. Kesler7145-4410
D. Weise28134-54101
D. Booth12123-3400
A. Ebbett9123+0200
T. Sestito15202-22701
C. Barker4022+1000
A. Volpatti16101+02800
K. Ballard22011-11600
A. Alberts9011-1600
M. Malhotra9000-3000
S. Pinizzotto3000-1500
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
R. Luongo157-4-3373842.47.904
C. Schneider146-5-3364012.63.910
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