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Game Preview: Pens-Wild

by Sam Kasan @PensInsideScoop / Pittsburgh Penguins

Game Date

Monday, December 31, 2018

Opponent

Minnesota Wild

Game Time

6 PM

Place

Xcel Energy Center

TV

AT&T SportsNet

Radio 

105.9 FM, the X

Notables

* The Pens are riding a 5-game winning streak. Pittsburgh is 7-1 in its past 8 games and 10-2-1 in their last 13. 

* Pittsburgh faces the Minnesota Wild in a New Year's Eve showdown. The Pens are in the middle of a 3-game road trip that began with a 6-1 victory in St. Louis on Saturday and concludes against the New York Rangers on Jan. 2. 

* Pens captain Sidney Crosby will play in his 900th career game against the Wild. He is only the 2nd player in team history to reach 900 (Mario Lemieux, 916). His 734 assists through 900 games ranks 8th in NHL history. 

* Goaltender Matt Murray is 5-0 with a 1.38 GAA and .959 save percentage since returning from a lower-body injury on Dec. 15. 

* Phil Kessel has 6 points (2G-4A) in his past 2 games. 

* The Wild defeated Winnipeg, 3-1, on Saturday. The victory snapped Minnesota's 5-game winless streak (0-4-1). Tonight's game is the only home game for Minnesota in a stretch of 7 contests.

* Zach Parise leads the Wild with 16 goals. Mikael Granlund has a team-best 25 assists and 36 points. 

* The Wild have the 2nd-ranked PK unit in the NHL (84.7%). Pittsburgh has 6 power-play goals in the past 2 games, and have the 6th-ranked PP in the league (25.9%).

Injuries

PIT - Olli Maatta (lower-body), Bryan Rust (lower-body), Justin Schultz (left leg fracture). 

MIN - Matt Dumba (upper-body), Mike Seeler (upper-body). 

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