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Wild stick with Kuemper, try to rebound vs. Sharks

by Dan Myers / NHL.com

SHARKS (21-14-5) at WILD (18-15-4)

TV: NBCSN

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Coming off one of their worst losses in franchise history, the Minnesota Wild will come back with goaltender Darcy Kuemper when they play the San Jose Sharks Tuesday at Xcel Energy Center (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN).

Kuemper started Saturday against the Dallas Stars and allowed four goals on 21 shots in 29 minutes of work before giving way to Niklas Backstrom in what ended up as a 7-1 loss. The six-goal margin of defeat tied a franchise record.

"Let's write the Dallas game off," Wild coach Mike Yeo said. "Aside from that, I think he's been pretty good [since Christmas]. There's always lessons to be had … but we're just going to throw that one in the garbage."

Charlie Coyle, who has shuffled between wing and center, will move to the middle against the Sharks, centering a line with Jason Zucker and Nino Niederreiter. The Wild reassigned Tyler Graovac to Iowa of the American Hockey League on Monday, opening up a spot at center.

"Wherever they put me is where I want to play," Coyle said. "I've gone back and forth several times so I'm kind of used to it. I've grown up my whole life playing both, so I just try and be that player who can play in different situations and different positions."

Defenseman Nate Prosser is out indefinitely. He is the latest Wild player to come down with a stomach illness that has gone through nearly half the dressing room.

With Prosser out, Stu Bickel will skate on Minnesota's third defensive pairing.

The Sharks did not skate Tuesday morning after arriving to the Twin Cities late following a 3-2 win at the Winnipeg Jets on Monday night.

Here are the projected lineups:

SHARKS

Barclay Goodrow - Patrick Marleau - Tommy Wingels

Melker Karlsson - Logan Couture - Joe Pavelski

Tomas Hertl - James Sheppard - Matt Nieto

John Scott - Andrew Desjardins - Jamie McGinn

Marc-Edouard Vlasic - Brent Burns

Brenden Dillon - Justin Braun

Scott Hannan - Matt Tennyson

Alex Stalock

Antti Niemi

Scratched: Freddie Hamilton, Matt Irwin

Injured: Mike Brown (lower body), Tyler Kennedy (shoulder), Joe Thornton (upper body), Raffi Torres (knee)

WILD

Zach Parise - Mikko Koivu - Jason Pominville

Jason Zucker - Charlie Coyle - Nino Niederreiter

Thomas Vanek - Kyle Brodziak - Justin Fontaine

Ryan Carter - Erik Haula - Matt Cooke

Ryan Suter - Jonas Brodin

Marco Scandella - Jared Spurgeon

Stu Bickel - Christian Folin

Darcy Kuemper

Niklas Backstrom

Scratched: None

Injured: Mikael Granlund (wrist), Brett Sutter (illness), Nate Prosser (illness), Keith Ballard (head/face)

Status report: Hertl was hit in the face by a puck early in the third period Monday and did not return to the game. His status for Tuesday could be in doubt. … Sutter returned to practice Monday after missing two games with an illness, but is not ready to return to the lineup.

Who's hot: Pavelski assisted on two goals against the Jets and now has at least a point in three straight games and in six of his past seven overall. … Vanek scored Minnesota's only goal Saturday and has 10 points, including five goals, in his past 12 games.

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