Columbus C Mark Letestu scored the winning goal in a shootout to lead the Blue Jackets to a 3-2 shootout victory Saturday night at Xcel Energy Center. Wild RW Jason Pominville scored a power-play goal to tie the game with 3:15 remaining to force overtime, while G Niklas Backstrom made 20 saves in the shootout loss. The Wild next takes a three-game road trip, starting with a visit to Calgary Monday at 8 p.m. CT on FOX Sports North PLUS and KFAN 100.3 FM.
Minnesota moved to 13-6-2 at Xcel Energy Center this season and 9-6-1 in its last 16 games overall. Tonight’s attendance of 19,187 was the Wild’s 17th straight sellout at Xcel Energy Center and 19th of the season.
RW Jason Pominville led Minnesota with a goal and an assist – his first points in a Wild sweater in St. Paul. He also posted a goal and an assist in Sunday’s contest in Columbus.
D Ryan Suter netted an assist on the Wild’s third-period goal and skated 30:29 – his third time topping the 30-minute mark in his last four games and his seventh time skating more than 30 minutes this season. He is tied for the NHL lead amongst defensemen with 26 assists this season, ranking second in points (30). He’s posted 21 points (4-17=21) in his last 24 games.
LW Zach Parise assisted on Pominville’s tying goal and now has six points (3-3=6) in eight career games against Columbus. He moved into a tie with C Mikko Koivu for the Wild lead with 33 points (15-18=33) this season. He has 11 points (4-7=11) in his last 14 games and 18 points (7-11=18) in his last 19 contests.
G Niklas Backstrom stopped 20-of-22 shots through overtime before allowing goals on both Blue Jackets shots in the shootout. He has posted a 1-2-1 record and a .948SV% in his last four games.
LW Pierre-Marc Bouchard opened the game’s scoring with his fifth goal of the season. It was Bouchard’s first goal in 10 games since scoring in Dallas on March 25 and he now has 16 points (5-11=16) in 36 games this season.
D Brett Clark assisted on Bouchard’s goal to notch his first point in four games with Minnesota.
The Wild’s penalty kill went two-for-two and has now been a perfect 11-for-11 over its last five games.
Bouchard’s goal stopped the Wild’s scoreless streak at 137:24 overall, and its home scoreless streak at 169:00.
Minnesota moved to 4-2 in the shootout this season and suffered its first shootout loss since Feb. 14 vs. Colorado. It was the Wild’s first time playing beyond three periods since a 4-3 shootout victory against Los Angeles on March 30.
The Wild scored the game’s first goal for the second time in its last nine games. Minnesota moved to 14-4-1 when scoring first this season.