C Mikko Koivu scored in overtime to secure the Wild’s seventh straight win, a 4-3 victory against Phoenix Wednesday night at Xcel Energy Center. D Ryan Suter scored with 54.3 seconds left in regulation to force overtime, while LW Torrey Mitchell and LW Matt Cullen also scored for the Wild, G Niklas Backstrom made 24 saves in the win. The Wild visits Dallas Friday at 7:30 p.m. on FOX Sports North PLUS and KFAN 100.3.
Minnesota earned its seventh straight victory – its longest since a seven-game streak Nov. 28-Dec. 10, 2011. The Wild moved to 9-1-0 in its last 10 games, 14-4-0 in its last 18 and 16-5-1 in its last 22 games overall since Feb. 9.
The Wild is now 12-3-1 at home this season, having won its last three home games with an 8-1-1 mark in the last 10. Minnesota has trailed for a total of 3:04 in its last six home games. Tonight’s attendance of 19,076 was the Wild’s 12th straight sellout at Xcel Energy Center and 14th of the season.
The Wild moved to 10-3-0 in March, marking the fourth time in franchise history the team has totaled at least 10 wins in a single month. The Wild last topped double-digit victories in November 2011, when it earned a franchise-best 11 wins (11-4-0).
The Wild moved to 3-1 in overtime this season, 6-2 in all overtime and shootout contests this year. Minnesota played its first overtime contest since Feb. 26 vs. Calgary – a 2-1 overtime victory (Parise).
C Mikko Koivu stretched his point streak to five games (3-5=8) with an assist and his third career overtime winner – his first since March 29, 2012 vs. Florida. He remains the team leader with 30 points (9-21=30) this season, including a Wild-best 10 multi-point games. The Wild moved to 82-60-16 since the beginning of the 2010-11 season when Koivu is in the lineup. He is now +10 over his last eight games.
D Ryan Suter scored with less than a minute in regulation and now has a point in 12 of his last 15 games, with 18 points (3-15=18) in that span. He leads all Wild players with 24 assists and is tied with LW Zach Parise for second on the Wild with 27 points (3-24=27) this season.
C Matt Cullen scored his second goal in as many games, giving him six for the season and 201 in his career. Cullen has 14 points (3- 11=14) over his last 14 games. He now has 26 points (7-19=26) in 41 career games against Phoenix. Cullen’s six-year-old Brooks was tonight’s Wild flag bearer – an item he purchased to benefit charity at this month’s Wild About Children event.
G Niklas Backstrom made 24 saves to earn his seventh straight win. He’s started 16 of the Wild’s last 17 games and moved to 15-3-1 in his last 19 games. He moved to 10-3-1 at home, including 7-1-1 since Feb. 7.
D Jared Spurgeon tallied an assist and now has five points (1-4=5) in a five game point streak, 10 points (3-7=10) in his last 12 games and 12 (4-8=12) this season.
LW Torrey Mitchell scored his third goal of the season – all on home ice. The Wild is 3-0-0 when Mitchell scores a goal.
LW Zach Parise assisted on Koivu’s winner and has 13 points (6-7=13) in his last 10 games, including six points (3-3=6) in a four-game
D Clayton Stoner picked up an assist giving him a career-high eight on the season. Stoner has three assists and is a +5 in his last two games.
Minnesota scored the opening goal for the 10th time in its last 11 games. The Wild moved to 13-4-0 when scoring first.