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Wild Warmup: Minnesota at Edmonton

Parise set for 900th career game as Wild looks to rebound from shutout loss in Calgary, conclude swing through Western Canada strongly

by Phil Ervin /
The essentials

Who: Minnesota Wild (15-11-2) at Edmonton Oilers (14-2-2)

Puck drop: 8:08 p.m. CT

Watch: FOX Sports North; FOX Sports app

Listen: KFAN FM 100.3, Wild Radio NetworkWild NHL App

Follow: @mnwild; GameCenter

The Wild has less than 24 hours to recover from its 2-0 shootout loss at Calgary on Thursday when it makes the short trip to Edmonton for Friday's matchup with the Oilers.

Thursday marked the first time this season Minnesota has been held off the scoreboard, despite the Wild's 31-20 edge in shots on goal. Flames netminder Mike Smith was flawless, and Elias Lindholm scored both goals as Pacific Division-leading Calgary improved to 8-1-1 in its past 10 games.

Video: Condensed Game: Wild @ Flames

The Flames' Alberta neighbor to the north is on somewhat of a streak of its own, having won four of its past five contests. Minnesota topped the Oilers 4-3 on Oct. 30 in Edmonton during the teams' only previous meeting this season.

Things look quite different in Edmonton than they did then. In one of a handful of surprise moves around the League, Ken Hitchcock came out of retirement to take over for fired Todd McLellan on Nov. 20.

The Oilers are 5-2-1 since Hitchcock was hired.

Wild winger Zach Parise, who leads the team with 13 goals this season, is expected to skate in his 900th career NHL game Friday. The 34-year-old alternate captain is two points away from 300 with the Wild.

The Wild may be without the services of captain Mikko Koivu, who left Thursday's game in the third period after taking a knee from Calgary defenseman Mark Giordano. Minnesota coach Bruce Boudreau didn't have an update on the Finnish center immediately Thursday night.

There is no avoiding the stardom of Edmonton's Connor McDavid, but he's not the only player the Wild must concern themselves with. Center Leon Draisatl's 30 points are tied for 22nd in the NHL, and fellow pivot Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has scored 13 points in 22 career games against Minnesota. After Alex Stalock made 18 saves in his 100th career game Thursday, Devan Dubnyk (10-8-2, 2.68 goals-against average) is expected to start in net for the Wild.

Series notes

All-Time Wild Record: 52-27-10 (27-14-3 at Xcel Energy Center, 25-13-7 at Edmonton)

2018-19: Minnesota earned a 4-3 win in its first season meeting against Edmonton at Rogers Place (10/30)…C Eric Staal led the team with three points (1-2=3)…RW Mikael Granlund (1-1=2), RW Nino Niederreiter (0-2=2) and D Ryan Suter (0-2=2) each tallied two points…G Alex Stalock stopped 34-of-37 shots…C Leon Draisaitl led the Oilers with two points (1-1=2)…RW Alex Chiasson and C Connor McDavid each scored a goal…G Cam Talbot made 24 saves.

WILD LEADERS: C Mikko Koivu leads the Wild with 46 points (7-39=46) in 63 games against Edmonton, his highest total against any team…D Ryan Suter has 22 points (5-17=22) in 47 matches…Staal has 21 points (5-16=21) in 19 contests…C Charlie Coyle owns 14 points (7-7=14) in 19 matches…LW Zach Parise has 15 points (9-6=15) in 23 games.

WILD GOALIES: G Devan Dubnyk is 9-2-0 stopping 266-of-281 shots faced for a 1.34 GAA, a .947 SV% and two shutouts in 11 career starts vs. the Oilers…Stalock is 3-2-0 with a 2.22 GAA and a .926 SV% in four starts.

OILERS LEADERS: C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins leads the Oilers with 13 points (6-7=13) in 22 games against Minnesota…McDavid owns eight points (5-3=8) in 10 matches…C Kyle Brodziak has eight points (4-4=8) in 30 contests…D Andrej Sekera has seven assists in 16 games.

OILERS GOALIES: Talbot is 4-6-1 with a 2.58 GAA and a .916 SV% in 11 career starts vs. the Wild…G Mikko Koskinen has not faced the Wild.

CONNECTIONS: Dubnyk was selected 14th overall by the Oilers in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft and recorded a 61-76-21 record with a 2.88 GAA, .910 SV% and eight shutouts in 171 career games (157 starts) with Edmonton (2009-14)…C Matt Hendricks collected 38 points (20-18=38) and 245 PIM in 214 games with the Oilers in parts of four seasons (2013- 2017)…D Jared Spurgeon is an Edmonton native…Edmonton Head Coach Todd McLellan coached the Wild's prospects in Cleveland (2000-01) and Houston (2001-05)…Brodziak played six seasons with Minnesota (2009-15), totaling 169 points (72-97=169) in 446 games.

Video: Carter sits down with Spurgeon

Road trippin'
  • The Wild is 7-7-0 on the road this season, posting a 4-3-0 record in its last seven road games.
  • Minnesota ranks T-5th in the NHL in fewest times shorthanded (36) and in PPG (11) and is sixth in PP% (24.4) on the road.
  • Wild goaltenders rank third in the NHL in fewest shots against/game (28.3), fifth in GAA (2.64), seventh in fewest goals against (37) and eighth in fewest shots against (396) and on the road.
  • Mikael Granlund leads Minnesota with 14 points in 14 road games this season and also ranks T-1st on the team in GWG (2). Zach Parise leads the Wild in goals (9) and PPG (4) on the road.
  • The Wild went 5-2-0 in a franchise-record seven-game road trip that spanned 14 days, Oct. 29-Nov. 11. The five wins set a franchise high for most wins on a road trip (NHL Stats).


Friday's contest concludes Minnesota's sixth set of 15 back-to-backs this season. The Wild is 2-4-0 in the first night of back-to-backs and 4-1-0 in the second this season.

Did you know?

The Wild's 114 points, 25 wins in Edmonton and 52 wins overall are the most against any franchise…The Wild is 15-5-1 in the last 21 games against the Oilers…Minnesota is 14-2-0 in its last 16 games in Edmonton, including an eight-game win streak (2/21/13-1/31/17) - the longest road win streak in team history.

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