Tonight marked the first time the Wild has scored 11 or more combined goals in two straight home games since it scored 12 in the first two home games of 2005 - a 6-3 win over Calgary on Oct. 5 and a 6-0 victory over Vancouver on Oct. 12.
RW Cal Clutterbuck
tallied two points (1-1=2) for the second consecutive game and the third time in his career. Clutterbuck also notched his first career game-winning goal.
RW Antti Miettinen tied a career-high with his 20th assist, set in 2005-06. Miettinen, who has five points (1-4=5) in the last three games, is the Wild’s second leading scorer with 30 points (10-20=30). His career-high in points is 34 (15-19=34), set last year.
D Marc-Andre Bergeron played in his 300th NHL game.
C James Sheppard posted an assist, giving him points in back-to-back games for the third time this season – and first since Nov. 22-24.
C Krys Kolanos scored his third goal of the season – his first since Dec. 31 against San Jose.
D Brent Burns scored his seventh goal of the season and finished plus-3. C Mikko Koivu
assisted on the goal, giving him four points (1-3=4) in his last three games.
The Wild has won back-to-back games against the Western Conference for the third time this season – the last coming Nov. 13 against Phoenix and Nov. 15 against Columbus, a shootout win. Minnesota won back-to-back regulation games against the West just one other time besides its current run – Oct. 25 against Columbus and Oct. 27 versus Chicago.
Also, in roster moves, the Wild has assigned center/left wing Benoit Pouliot to the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League.
Krys Kolanos nearly sets up a Craig Weller goal, but Weller clangs a shot off the post.
grabs a loose puck in the offensive zone after a turnover and fires it by Roloson for his first goal in 11 games. Bouchard has seven points (1-6=7) in the last eight games.
Craig Weller is being attended to on the ice after he fought Sheldon Souray. The pair had been jawing for quite some time. Ethan Moreau, the Oilers' captain, tried to go after Weller too. Weller skated off on his own power. Derek Boogaard is being shown on the screen, and the crowd loves it.
Gilbert Brule hauls down Kim Johnsson, and the Wild will try to add to this lead on the power play.
A Kolanos penalty erased the power play, but Brent Burns scores off a 2-on-0 pass from Mikko Koivu
, and it's a three-goal Wild lead. Koivu stickhandled his way through two defenders to get himself free. Unbelievable move.
Sam Gagner with a dangerous high stick to Eric Belanger off the faceoff. A double-minor, and the Wild will finish this thing off on the power play, essentially. It's gotten a bit out of hand, you wonder if Derek Boogaard will get some power play ice time here.
The Wild gets a power play after Dustin Penner's holding penalty. The Oilers are just 75.0 percent on the power play this season. Minnesota held the puck with the extra attacker for more than 30 seconds. James Sheppard, looking for the Gordie Howe Hat Trick, pushed a tip just wide.
That was a quick man advantage. Mikko Koivu
gets tied up in the corner, and gets called for holding the stick as he sat on the ice.
Erik Cole draws an interference penalty for upending Stephane Veilleux
into the end of the bench where the glass starts. Veilleux was a bit slow to get up, but appears ok. Cole, if you remember, was hit hard in front of the bench by Aaron Voros in Carolina last season.
Owen Nolan nearly makes Edmonton pay for that penalty, sliding a shot just wide on a nifty feed by Brent Burns.
Still on the power play, Krys Kolanos hits the outside of the net bidding for his second of the night.
Marc-Antoine Pouliot hits the outside of the net with a deflection.
Not that the power play has been super effective tonight, but the Wild will go back on it, as Sheldon Souray cross checks Cal Clutterbuck
. The play looked much worse in slow motion, and we've seen it a couple times now.
End 2nd period
Just 11 shots that period - six by the Oilers. And we're still 2-1 Minnesota through 40 minutes. Edmonton is 1-14-1 when trailing after two.
13:54 - We'll have to get the story on what touched off this fight. James Sheppard tangles with Ladislav Smid at center ice.
13:35 - The fight fired up the crowd, and the Wild, as will this. A terrific 2-on-1 finished off by Krys Kolanos. Eric Belanger was kicked out of the faceoff circle in front of Niklas Backstrom
, and Pierre-Marc Bouchard
wins the draw ahead to Antti Miettinen. Miettinen pushes the puck around Minneapolis' Tom Gilbert
and goes 2-on-1 from the left wing side, sliding a pass to Krys Kolanos, who pushes it by Dwayne Roloson for his third goal of the season. Miettinen ties his career-high with his 20th assist.
Derek Boogaard draws a penalty on Edmonton's Kyle Brodziak
, and the Wild power play, one for its last 15, goes on the attack.
The power play never got untracked.
Just seconds after an Eric Belanger backcheck stopped a sure goal, Dustin Penner's 11th goal of the season evens things up at 1. Backstrom had the puck near frozen at the right post, but Penner kept chopping at it and pushed the puck acrss the line before the whistle blew. Backstrom was not happy that the whistle didn't blow.
Marc-Andre Bergeron goes for hooking, and Edmonton goes on the power play. The Oilers are sixth in the league in road power play at 21.4 percent.
A combination of a great save by Backstrom and a deflection by Kim Johnsson save a sure Andrew Cogliano goal.
Fancy footwork by Cogliano forces a tripping penalty on Marek Zidlicky, and the Wild PK is back at it.
Does anyone on this team have a better shot right now than Cal Clutterbuck
? Wicked wrister! James Sheppard, at the fop of the left circle, drops a pass to Clutterbuck, who takes time to collect the puck and rifles a shot top shelf over Roloson for his sixth goal of the season - and second in as many games.
A tripping call to Brent Burns, and the Wild will have to kill early in the second too.
End 1st period
A couple of big penalty kills in the final seven minutes, and the Wild with all the momentum after Clutterbuck brings the crowd to its feet. Shots 11-8 Edmonton through one.Pregame ...
Stanzel here, though not running on all cylinders. I am currently Firefox-less, so I can't post on my machine. Jamie MacDonald of Wild.com will post my prose once a period.
Erik Reitz, Colton Gillies and Benoit Pouliot are scratched for the Wild tonight. It's Niklas Backstrom
against Dwayne Roloson. Roloson, by the way, is 5-10-2 with a 2.87 GAA and a .894 SV% against the Wild since leaving the team in a trade late in the 2005-06 season. He has the most career shutouts in this building (11), just one ahead of Backstrom. However, since leaving the Wild, Roloson is 2-5-2 with a 2.75 GAA and a .901 SV% at Xcel Energy Building. That's not much of a surprise, though, since the Oilers have dropped seven straight here -- five with Roloson in goal.
Former Gopher Ryan Potulny was a pre-game guest with Rogers Sportsnet, while Andrew Brunette was interviewed by Kevin Gorg on FS North.
Before I forget, you'll want to log on to Wild.com throughout the day Saturday. I plan on making the rounds (local rounds, anyways) of HockeY Day Minnesota, and I'm going to try to file updates every hour starting at 9 a.m.
Thursday, 12:30 p.m. CST
The Wild plays its 44th game tonight -- and first of the season against division rival Edmonton. That means three trips to the Great White North. Tonight, the Oilers invade the Xcel Energy Center, fresh off their first win in Washington in 11 years. Edmonton must love starting a road trip in Washington when it doesn’t have anotherr game in the East on this one.Stephane Veilleux
, who missed practice yesterday with a lower body injury, skated this morning. It was an optional practice -- Mikko Koivu
, Andrew Brunette, Eric Belanger and Kim Johnsson didn’t skate. Neither did Jacques Lemaire, who met with the media afterward.
The Edmonton media is vast in number … and they love to talk to Derek Boogaard. Always an interesting conversation.
A funny tidbit before cutting this blog short (I have a new laptop coming later today so I’m in the process of getting stuff ready to transfer) ...
This one was passed on to me from Carl in Corporate Sales regarding Hockey Unplugged last night. Apparently, a couple fans mentioned how much they loved the R.S.S. Feed at the event, telling "Brian," who is our corporate sales intern, and not Ryan. We may need to put a headshot up on the R.S.S. Feed.