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GAMEDAY: Wild vs. Dallas

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 3:50 AM

Kelly Erickson - Special To Wild.com

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GAMEDAY: Wild vs. Dallas
Dallas Stars vs. Minnesota Wild
Minnesota Wild (26-19-5: 57 points, T-7th in Western Conference, 4th in Central Division) vs. Dallas Stars (21-19-7: 49 points, T-10th in Western Conference, T-5th in Central Division)
It’s a great day for hockey.

As the State Of Hockey celebrates Hockey Day Minnesota — the eighth installment of the unofficial holiday — the Wild will host the Dallas Stars as a nightcap to the day’s events.

The youngsters will get things started outdoors at the historic Handke Pit in Elk River, Minn., at 10 a.m. with back-to-back-to-back high school contests. The Gophers host Ohio State in the evening, leading into tonight’s matchup between the former Minnesota franchise and the current one. For full details on the day, click here.

Taking part in his first Hockey Day Minnesota is netminder Darcy Kuemper who will make his fourth-straight start. Kuemper is 3-1-0 since he was recalled by Minnesota Jan. 2 including his first career shutout. He’s also posted a .957 save percentage and a 1.23 goals-against average in that time.

The start of 2014 has been an interesting one for both teams. The Wild entered the year on a six-game skid, but turned things around, winning six out of eight games in the month of January so far. Dallas, on the other hand, started 2014 two points ahead of the Wild in the Central Division, having earned eight points in its final 10 contests of 2013. But the Stars went on their own six-game skid and have lost seven of their eight games on the month.

Tonight marks the second of four meetings this season between Minnesota and Dallas. The last time they met, the Wild claimed a 5-1 victory at Xcel Energy Center on Oct. 18. Matt Cooke netted the game-winner and also picked up an assist on the night as five different Wild players scored — including Justin Fontaine who set a franchise record for the fastest goal scored to start a game, tallying his first NHL goal at the 12 second mark.

In it’s most recent outing, the Wild upended the Oilers 4-1 Thursday night. Nate Prosser scored his first-career game-winning goal — his first goal of the season — while Jason Pominville, Jason Zucker and Fontaine also scored. Kuemper made 20 saves in the contest.

The Stars enter Saturday’s tilt fresh off a 4-2 loss at home to the Bruins Thursday night. While Erik Cole and Jamie Benn netted goals for the Stars and netminder Kari Lehtonen made 37 saves on the night.
If You're Going
The South Stars are led by Tyler Seguin’s 44 points and 21 goals (21-23=44) this season. Jamie Benn follows with 40 points and 17 goals (17-23=40).

Kari Lehtonen leads Dallas in net with a 17-13-7 record. He has a 2.64 goals- against average and a .916 save percentage.
First off, it’s Hockey Day Minnesota so be sure to read up on all our awesome stories from around the State Of Hockey, here. Also, be sure to be in your seats as Lou Nanne is honored with this year’s State of Hockey Legacy Award. In addition, all fans in attendance will also get a commemorative puck tonight, presented by FOX Sports North.

The Wild will wear its GREEN sweaters tonight.
Who's Hot Gameday Media
Who isn’t? There’s plenty to choose from but Jason Pominville used a goal and assist Thursday to record his sixth multi-point game this season and 120th of his career. He leads the Wild 19 goals and ranks second with 33 points (19-14=33) this season, including 16 points (6-10=16) in the last 20 games.

Fans can guess who's going to be hot with the Wild's HotBox Fantasy Challenge for a chance to win great prizes.

Wild.com
Game Notes | Transactions | Injury Report | Lighthouse | @mnwildLIVE | @mnwild
WildTV
Yeo | Ballard | Prosser | Haula |
PONDcast
Preview: Wild vs. Dallas
Probably Wild Lineup Between The Pipes
Expect the forward lines will remain the same:

Heatley-Coyle-Zucker
Niederreiter-Granlund-Pominville
Cooke-Brodziak-Fontaine
Mitchell-Haula-Veilleux

Things look to stay the same on the blue line:

Suter-Brodin
Scandella-Prosser
Stoner-Ballard

Kuemper will face Dallas for the first time tonight.
View From The Press Box
You know what the day means. I myself am now a part of it with two kids playing high school hockey. To have a chance to see outdoor hockey with high school teams, I think that's awesome. Hopefully we can cap it off with a big one [tonight].

-Yeo on Hockey Day Minnesota
It looks as if forward Mike Rupp will be tonight’s healthy scratch.

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
Alex Goligoski (Grand Rapids) is a Minnesota native. Tonight’s contest is part of more than 16 hours of hockey-related programming on the Wild’s television partner that began at 9 a.m. and includes three high school hockey games on an outdoor rink Elk River’s Handke Pit (one one tape delay after the Wild game) and the University of Minnesota men’s team versus Ohio State.


Broadcast Info In Case You Missed It
Wild vs. Dallas will be broadcast locally in high definition on FOX Sports North and FOX Sports Wisconsin with a start time at 8 p.m. The game can be heard on KFAN 100.3 FM or online at Wild.com.      
Wild.com
Goaltender's Hockey Climb| Living The Dream | Northstar College Cup Primer | Spirit In A Sled | Five Takeaways vs. EDM | Wild 5-Hole vs. EDM |
WildTV
Quinn's Cup | Yeo - Jan. 15 | Parise - Jan. 15
PONDcast
Yeo - Jan. 17
Photo Gallery
Wild vs. EDM | A Season In Hugs |
2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 08 '14 MIN 3 at DAL 4 E. Cole
Jan 21 '14 MIN 0 at DAL 4 V. Fiddler
Jan 18 '14 DAL 2 at MIN 3 - OT N. Prosser
Oct 12 '13 DAL 1 at MIN 5 M. Cooke
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
T. Seguin46212445+3454
J. Benn48172340+23032
A. Chiasson4691524-182832
E. Cole48131023-111223
C. Eakin48101222-41220
V. Nichushkin4691322+11621
R. Peverley4751722-51102
R. Garbutt4110818+35501
R. Whitney4151318-11010
A. Roussel478917-210901
A. Goligoski4721517-62410
S. Horcoff475813-23620
S. Gonchar4211213-61000
B. Dillon485712+05800
V. Fiddler422810+02000
J. Benn45189+72010
T. Daley34257-52600
K. Connauton21167+01000
S. Robidas24415+71210
C. Sceviour8314+2002
D. Jeffrey21022-4200
L. MacDermid6022+2500
A. Rome10011+0200
M. Fortunus1011+1000
C. Gaunce9000+1700
J. Oleksiak7000-3200
T. Morin3000+1000
C. Mueller1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
K. Lehtonen3917-13-810111902.65.915
D. Ellis124-5-0313033.25.898
J. Campbell10-1-06476.00.872
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. Koivu4482735-41813
J. Pominville51191433-31255
R. Suter5162531+52420
Z. Parise37151227+11882
N. Niederreiter5191726+102810
M. Cooke5161420+103202
M. Granlund3831720-31611
D. Heatley519918-111631
C. Coyle3961218-52111
J. Fontaine4412517+101811
J. Brodin487815+21630
K. Brodziak5141115+82401
M. Scandella4831114+101801
J. Spurgeon4311112+61010
T. Mitchell48189-41500
K. Ballard30066-73100
N. Prosser25235+32802
J. Zucker16404+4011
C. Stoner45044-34800
E. Haula17123+2400
Z. Konopka36112-55500
M. Dumba13112-5210
S. Veilleux23101-41500
M. Rupp8011+1500
B. Bulmer5000-2200
J. Blum4000+0000
C. McMillan1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
J. Harding2918-7-3466901.65.933
N. Backstrom205-10-2545373.02.899
D. Kuemper74-2-0131672.13.922
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