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Wild at Flyers preview

Elliott starts for Philadelphia; Zucker on scoring tear for Minnesota

by Adam Kimelman @NHLAdamK / Deputy Managing Editor

WILD (6-7-2) at FLYERS (8-6-2)

7 p.m. ET; NBCSP+, FS-N, NHL.TV


The Game

Jason Zucker, who has scored the Minnesota Wild's past five goals, will look to extend that streak against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center on Saturday in the first of a home-and-home series. The teams play Tuesday at Xcel Energy Center.

Zucker had his first NHL hat trick in a 3-0 victory at the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday, one night after scoring twice in the Wild's 4-2 loss at the Toronto Maple Leafs. He's the first Wild player to score five straight team goals, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Goaltender Brian Elliott is expected to start for the Flyers. He made 38 saves in a 3-1 victory against the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday.


Players to watch

Wild center Eric Staal has four points (one goal, three assists) in his past three games.

Flyers forward Claude Giroux has six points (three goals, three assists) during a three-game point streak.


They said it

"Sometimes the puck happens to go in for you. I'm just trying to work hard and get to the net. Just hang around the net and be around there. A lot of the time pucks lay there and just happen to bounce." -- Wild forward Jason Zucker

"They're playing awesome. Can't ask more from them. I think the rest of the team has to take it upon ourselves to back them up. There's going to be nights throughout the year where we're playing against good teams and top lines are going to go against each other. That's when the depth of our team has to come through and we've got to get some big goals." -- Flyers forward Jordan Weal on the need for secondary scoring


Wild projected lineup

Nino Niederreiter -- Eric Staal -- Jason Zucker

Tyler Ennis -- Mikko Koivu -- Mikael Granlund

Daniel Winnik -- Joel Eriksson Ek -- Luke Kunin

Marcus Foligno -- Matt Cullen -- Chris Stewart

Ryan Suter -- Jared Spurgeon

Jonas Brodin -- Matt Dumba

Gustav Olofsson -- Mike Reilly

Devan Dubnyk

Alex Stalock

Scratched: Kyle Quincey

Injured: Zach Parise (back), Charlie Coyle (fractured right fibula)


Flyers projected lineup

Claude Giroux -- Sean Couturier -- Jakub Voracek

Travis Konecny -- Valtteri Filppula -- Wayne Simmonds

Jordan Weal -- Jori Lehtera -- Dale Weise

Taylor Leier -- Scott Laughton -- Michael Raffl

Ivan Provorov -- Robert Hagg

Brandon Manning -- Shayne Gostisbehere

Travis Sanheim -- Radko Gudas

Brian Elliott

Michal Neuvirth

Scratched: Matt Read

Injured: Andrew MacDonald (lower body), Nolan Patrick (upper body)


Status report

Stalock rejoined the Wild after missing the games Wednesday and Thursday to be with his wife for the birth of their daughter. … Patrick skated with Read and assistant coach Ian Laperriere but will miss his eighth straight game. He's hoping to play during the Flyers' two-game road trip, which finishes in his hometown of Winnipeg on Thursday


Stat pack

The Wild are 16-for-17 on the penalty kill and have scored two shorthanded goals in their past six games. … One member of the Flyers' top line has scored in 10 of the past 12 games; Philadelphia was shut out in the other two. Couturier (nine), Giroux (eight) and Voracek (four) have scored 21 of the Flyers' 37 goals in the past 12 games.

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