G Niklas Backstrom
made 30 saves and LW Andrew Brunette, RW Owen Nolan and LW Guillaume Latendresse
scored a goal apiece while as the Minnesota Wild defeated the Edmonton Oilers 3-1 in front of a pre-holiday crowd of 18,250 at Xcel Energy Center. Minnesota, which has now defeated the Oilers 11 straight games at home, plays host to St. Louis on Friday at 7 p.m.
Minnesota has defeated the Oilers in 11 straight home meetings, outscoring them 38-12 and trailing in just one of the games. The Wild’s home winning streak versus Edmonton trails only Nashville’s 13 straight against Columbus for the longest current run in the NHL, according to Elias Sports Bureau. Edmonton is 3-for-48 (6.3%) on the power play in its last 11 games at Xcel Energy Center.
The Wild has improved to 8-4-0 in December, equaling its most wins in any December in team history. Minnesota, which has four games left in December, totaled eight wins in December 2005 (8-7-1). The most wins the Wild has ever recorded in one month was 10 in March 2007 (10-3-2).
LW Andrew Brunette scored his 11th goal of the season to take over sole possession of the team lead. It marked his first goal in nine games since Dec. 5. Brunette notched his eighth PPG – tied for third in the NHL.
RW Owen Nolan notched a goal late in the second period – his ninth of the season and second in as many games since missing four games with a lower body injury. Nolan’s goal was his 52nd career GWG – second this season. His nine goals rank him third on the Wild roster.
LW Guillaume Latendresse
tallied an empty net goal to seal the victory in his first contest since missing two games with the flu. He now has five points (4-1=5) in 12 games with the Wild.
G Niklas Backstrom
made 30 saves, improving to 6-1-1 in his last eight games at home and is 69-21-16 in his career at Xcel Energy Center.
LW Andrew Brunette’s first period PPG snapped a 1-for-30 streak for the Wild’s power play over an eight-game stretch.
RW Martin Havlat had a six-game point streak snapped.
The Wild’s penalty kill was a perfect 3-for-3 and hasn’t allowed a goal in the last five games (14 chances) since Vancouver went 3-for-5 Dec. 12.
Minnesota scored first for just the fourth time in the last 18 games. The Wild is 9-3-1 when scoring first.