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Wild Warmup: Minnesota at Boston

Points streak on the line for Wild when it takes on Bruins Saturday at TD Garden

by Dan Myers @mnwildscribe /
The essentials

Who: Minnesota Wild (9-11-2) at Boston Bruins (14-3-5)

Puck drop: 6:08 p.m. CT

Watch: FOX Sports North, FOX Sports App

Listen: FM 100.3 KFAN, Wild Radio NetworkWild NHL App

Follow: @mnwild; @mnwildscribe; GameCenter

The Wild Warmup is presented by Bryant Heating and Cooling

BOSTON -- The Wild will try and keep its points streak alive on Saturday night when it plays the Boston Bruins at TD Garden.

Minnesota has at least a point in four consecutive games, posting a 3-0-1 record during that stretch, a streak that was continued on Thursday with a 3-2 win against the Colorado Avalanche at Xcel Energy Center.

Since the beginning of November, the Wild has points in five of six and in seven of nine, posting a record of 5-2-2 in those games.

"Like we've said we're not going to look at the standings. We just have to play our butts off and put ourselves in the best spot we can for a post holiday run. We just need to put wins together," said Wild goaltender Alex Stalock. "You know week by week, we want to win each week and [Thursday] we won the week and obviously we can sweep the week. Hopefully we can do that Saturday."

Sweeping the week won't be easy for the Wild. Boston stands alone atop the Atlantic Division standings with 33 points, tied with the New York Islanders and the St. Louis Blues for second-most in the League entering the day on Friday.

The Bruins have not lost in regulation at home this season, earning at least one point in all 12 of its games played at TD Garden (8-0-4). 

Overall, the Bruins have lost just three times in regulation this season. 

"Obviously there's no tougher test than going to the [TD] Garden right now the way that team is playing," Stalock said. "Can we go in there and play a good team game? I don't see why not."

Stalock is expected to start as he continues to carry the crease in the absence of Devan Dubnyk, who is not with the team as he attends to a family issue. With back-to-back games coming up early next week, Kaapo Kahkonen could make his NHL debut at some point on the trip.

Greg Pateryn and Marcus Foligno are also not on the trip for Minnesota as they continue to rehab their injuries back in Minnesota.

Boston got good news on the injury front Thursday with the return of top-line centerman Patrice Bergeron, who missed the previous two games with a lower-body injury. He did not practice Friday, but it was for maintenance reasons and he's expected in the lineup against the Wild.

The Bruins could also see the return of defenseman Torey Krug, who has missed the past five games with an upper-body injury sustained Nov. 10. 

Krug, who leads all Boston defensemen with 13 points in 17 games, is considered a "strong probable," according to Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy. 

"Trending that way," Cassidy told the Bruins' team website following practice on Friday. "We'll make a decision tomorrow. He's got to check in with the medical staff. He was in a normal jersey today, participated in every part of practice, so that's a good sign."

Boston's 3.55 goals per game ranks fifth best in the NHL. The Bruins are led in that department by David Pastrnak's 20 goals, which leads the League. Brad Marchand leads the club with 37 points, including 15 goals. Pastrnak has 36 points. 

Goaltender Tuukka Rask is 10-2-2 in 14 starts with a 2.05 goals-against average and a .931 save percentage.

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