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Preview: Wild at Blue Jackets

Minnesota defenseman Ryan Suter expected to play; Kyle Quincey, Lauri Korpikoski to debut for Columbus

by Craig Merz / NHL.com Correspondent

WILD (41-14-6) at BLUE JACKETS (39-16-6)

7 p.m. ET; FS-O, FS-N, FS-WI, NHL.TV

 

Wild team scope

Defenseman Ryan Suter is expected to play for the Minnesota Wild. Suter left late in the first period of a 6-5 win against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday after being boarded by Jets defenseman Paul Postma. "He looks fine to me. I anticipate him playing," coach Bruce Boudreau said. "He's old school. There's no doubt in my mind. He's tough. He's a tough farmer. That's probably why he's making $100 million this year, or whatever it is." The Wild will be missing left wing Zach Parise and right wing Jason Pominville for the third straight game because of the mumps. Minnesota leads the Chicago Blackhawks by three points for first place in the Central Division. "We can have different guys fill different roles at different moments of games, and when we haven't played our best we've still found ways to win," forward Eric Staal said. "Over the course of 82 games you need that and good teams find ways to do that, and that's what we've done." The Wild are 15-1-2 in their past 18 road games. Forward Charlie Coyle has 99 NHL assists and center Martin Hanzal is two assists from 200.

 

Blue Jackets team scope

Defenseman Kyle Quincey and forward Lauri Korpikoski will each debut for the Columbus Blue Jackets a little more than 24 hours after being acquired in trades. Quincey will skate with Ryan Murray on the third pair. He'll likely start on the right side, but he and Murray are interchangeable. Markus Nutivaara will be scratched. "Don't read into that too much. He's going to be a big part of this," coach John Tortorella said of the rookie defenseman. "He's still a little bit banged up. This gives him a chance to truly really get healthy." Quincey was acquired from the New Jersey Devils for defenseman Dalton Prout on Wednsday and brings needed Stanley Cup Playoff experience. "You've got to play with the guys and feel each other out, so that will take a few games," Quincey said. "Might as well start right now." Columbus acquired Korpikoski in a trade from the Dallas Stars for minor league defenseman Dillon Heatherington on Wednesday. Korpikoski will play to the left of center William Karlsson and Josh Anderson. "It's good to get playing right away," Korpikoski said. "That's where you feel most comfortable, on the ice right now. Everything else is new." The Blue Jackets are 4-1-1 in their past six games, including points in three straight (2-0-1). They are tied in points for second place in the Metropolitan Division with the Pittsburgh Penguins, seven points behind the Washington Capitals; Columbus has one game in hand. Center Brandon Dubinsky is one point from 400 in his NHL career.

 

Wild projected lineup

Nino Niederreiter -- Eric Staal -- Jordan Schroeder 

Jason Zucker -- Mikko Koivu -- Mikael Granlund

Tyler Graovac -- Martin Hanzal -- Charlie Coyle

Chris Stewart -- Erik Haula -- Ryan White

Ryan Suter -- Jared Spurgeon

Marco Scandella -- Matt Dumba

Christian Folin -- Jonas Brodin

Devan Dubnyk

Darcy Kuemper

Scratched: Nate Prosser

Injured: Victor Bartley (arm), Zach Parise (mumps), Jason Pominville (mumps)

 

Blue Jackets projected lineup

Nick Foligno -- Alexander Wennberg -- Oliver Bjorkstrand

Boone Jenner -- Brandon Dubinsky -- Cam Atkinson

Scott Hartnell -- Sam Gagner -- Brandon Saad

Lauri Korpikoski -- William Karlsson -- Josh Anderson

Zach Werenski -- Seth Jones

Jack Johnson -- David Savard

Ryan Murray -- Kyle Quincey

Sergei Bobrovsky

Joonas Korpisalo

Scratched: Scott Harrington, Markus Nutivaara

Injured: Lukas Sedlak (oblique) Matt Calvert (oblique)

 

Status report

Karlsson will return after missing the Blue Jackets' 1-0 overtime loss against the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday with an illness. … Columbus is not carrying an extra forward.

 

Who's hot

Granlund has nine points (five goals, four assists) in a five-game point streak and 28 points (11 goals, 17 assists) in his past 22 games. ... Koivu has eight points (one goal, seven assists) in a five-game point streak. Zucker has goals in two straight. ... Niederreiter has 10 points (five goals, five assists) in his past 10 games. ... Bobrovsky has stopped 57 of 60 shots (.950) in his past two starts. ... Anderson has five points (four goals, one assist) in his past five games.

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