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GAMEDAY: Wild vs. Ottawa

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 3:50 AM

Kelly Erickson - Special To

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GAMEDAY: Wild vs. Ottawa
Ottawa Senators vs. Minnesota Wild
Minnesota Wild (25-18-5: 55 points, 8th in Western Conference, 4th in Central Division) vs. Ottawa Senators (20-18-8: 48 points, T-10th in Eastern Conference, 6th in Atlantic Division)
While the red-hot Wild has been working its way through Western Conference opponents recently, tonight it gets a break as Minnesota hosts the Ottawa Senators.

With a 5-1-0 record over its last six games, the Wild has found a groove scoring by committee. Over the six-game span, 10 different Wild players accounted for Minnesota’s 20 goals. Ryan Suter and Justin Fontaine each picked up their first career hat tricks during that stretch.

Meanwhile both Dany Heatley and Charlie Coyle — who have formed some chemistry on the top line — are riding two-straight multi-point games into tonight. Coyle has two goals and two assists while Heatley has one goal and three helpers.

Overall, the Wild’s game is clicking at the moment and is anchored by some hot performances in net. Both Niklas Backstrom and Darcy Kuemper have had career nights in net — each posting a 39-save night last week in Phoenix and Los Angeles respectively.

The Wild will stick with Kuemper’s hot hand tonight as he is coming off his first career shutout Sunday night in Nashville. The netminder has posted a 2-0-0 record since he was recalled Jan. 2 and a .048 goals-against average with a .948 save percentage.

Tonight marks the second meeting between the Wild and Senators this season, the first at Xcel Energy Center. In their first matchup on Nov. 20, Minnesota edged Ottawa 4-3 as four different Wild players recorded multiple points — Mikko Koivu with three, Zach Parise, Jonas Brodin and Heatley with two each.

Last time out, the Wild upended Nashville 4-0 as Kuemper stopped all 23 Predators’ shots Sunday night. Minnesota saw four different players find the back of the net as Heatley, Jason Zucker, Matt Cooke and Marco Scandella each tallied a goal. Ten different Wild players picked up a point in the contest.

Ottawa last faced the Predators, also in Nashville, Saturday night. In the 2-1 shootout win, Kyle Turris scored in regulation while Mika Zibanejad and Jason Spezza both scored in the shootout to earn the extra point. Goaltender Craig Anderson made 32 saves on the night and blanked Nashville’s two attempts in the shootout.
If You're Going
The Senators are 5-1-1 in their last seven games, with the regulation loss coming in a 5-0 shutout in Boston Dec. 27.  

Ottawa is led by Erik Karlsson’s 41 points this season (10-31=41), while Bobby Ryan leads the team in goals with 18 and is second in points with 37 (18-19=37).
Tonight is another installment of Hat Trick BINGOAL presented by Innovative Office Solutions. It’s just like BINGO, but Wild-related plays will fill the spaces. The First 5,000 fans will receive a BINGOAL card for a chance to win great prizes.

The Wild will wear its RED sweaters tonight.
Who's Hot Gameday Media
With plenty of options to choose from, Nino Niederreiter may just be the hottest hand at the moment. Niederreiter had eight points (3-5=8) in his last eight games for the Wild. He ranks fifth on the Wild with 25 points (9-16=25) in 48 games this season, ranking T-3rd on the team in assists and T-4th in goals. He also leads the Wild with a plus-10 rating and 113 hits this season.

Fans can guess who's going to be hot with the Wild's HotBox Fantasy Challenge for a chance to win great prizes.
Game Notes | Transactions | Injury Report | Lighthouse | @mnwildLIVE | @mnwild
Yeo | Zucker | Coyle | Blum | Harding
Preview: Wild vs. Ottawa
Probably Wild Lineup Between The Pipes
The lineup will remain the same:


If there are no changes on the blue line:


Kuemper has not faced the Senators.
View From The Press Box
He's gone into the net with the attitude "I'm going to prove myself." And, certainly, he's delivered.

-Yeo on Darcy Kuemper
Defenseman Keith Ballard and forward Mike Rupp will be tonight’s healthy scratches.

Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Jared Spurgeon are all listed on IR with lower-body injuries. Josh Harding joins them due to illness.
Honorary State of Hockey Resident Worthless Stat
Matt Kassian was selected 57th overall by the Wild in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft and skated in 28 games with Minnesota (2010-13) before being traded to Ottawa for a 2014 sixth round draft pick (3/12/13). During Minnesota’s 5-1-0 run to start the calendar year it has outscored its opponents, 20-10 — a ratio of 3.33 goals to 1.67 goals-against/game.

Broadcast Info In Case You Missed It
Wild vs. Ottawa will be broadcast locally in high definition on FOX Sports North with a start time at 7 p.m. The game can be heard on KFAN 100.3 FM or online at
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2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Jan 14 '14 OTT 3 at MIN 0 C. MacArthur
Nov 20 '13 MIN 4 at OTT 3 M. Koivu
E. Karlsson47103343-111821
B. Ryan47181937+101662
K. Turris47132336+171941
C. MacArthur46161834+124265
J. Spezza42121931-153051
M. Zibanejad3710919-9820
M. Michalek4771219-191620
C. Conacher4541115+72401
Z. Smith479514-25704
P. Wiercioch3031114+11020
M. Methot4231013-21601
C. Phillips4411213-21810
E. Condra415611+21600
J. Corvo253710-71000
C. Greening47459-62921
J. Cowen44358+22801
C. Neil42516-59900
E. Gryba22134+72500
C. Ceci15134+5201
J. Pageau21202-51000
M. Stone5112+0000
D. Grant20022-3400
M. Borowiecki13101-24800
M. Kassian23011+02700
S. Da Costa4000+1200
M. Hoffman3000-2200
C. Anderson3115-9-5909523.10.905
R. Lehner206-9-3476332.54.926
M. Koivu4482735-41813
J. Pominville49181331-41055
R. Suter4952530+32420
Z. Parise37151227+11882
N. Niederreiter4991625+92610
M. Cooke4961319+83002
M. Granlund3631619-41611
D. Heatley499817-121631
J. Fontaine4211516+91811
C. Coyle3761016-72111
J. Brodin467714+01630
K. Brodziak4941014+62001
M. Scandella4631013+71801
J. Spurgeon4311112+61010
T. Mitchell46178-51300
K. Ballard28066-73100
C. Stoner43044-24600
J. Zucker14303+2011
N. Prosser23033-12800
Z. Konopka36112-55500
M. Dumba13112-5210
E. Haula15022+2000
S. Veilleux21101-41000
M. Rupp8011+1500
B. Bulmer5000-2200
J. Blum4000+0000
C. McMillan1000+0000
J. Harding2918-7-3466901.65.933
N. Backstrom205-10-2545373.02.899
D. Kuemper52-2-0101112.46.910 is the official Web site of the Minnesota Wild Hockey Club. The Minnesota Wild,, "The State of Hockey" and State of Hockey flag image are trademarks of Minnesota Sports & Entertainment. NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015  Minnesota Sports & Entertainment and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

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