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Wild Warmup: Minnesota at Calgary

Dubnyk returns to the crease Wednesday as Wild plays second game of back-to-back

by Dan Myers @1DanMyers /
The Essentials

Who: Minnesota Wild (33-11-5, 71 points, first place, Central Division) at Calgary Flames (25-24-3, 53 points, fifth place, Pacific Division)

Puck drop: 9:10 p.m. CT

Watch: FOX Sports North; FOX Sports GOWild Watch Bar Locations; NHL.TV

Listen: KFAN 100.3 FM

Follow: @mnwild; GameCenter

The Opponent

Playing their first game since the All-Star break, the Calgary Flames were one of two teams in the NHL (Vancouver) that didn't play on Tuesday. The Flames won 3-2 in overtime over Ottawa in their final game before the break, a win that snapped a four-game losing streak. The Flames are led offensively by Mikael Backlund, who has 34 points. Johnny Gaudreau has played 10 fewer games but has 31 points. He did not play the last time these teams met in early December because of a hand injury sustained in the matchup in St. Paul on Nov. 15, a game Calgary won 1-0.

Line rush

Since they became a line on Nov. 25, Jason Zucker (13-14=27, +21) - Mikko Koivu (12-16=28, +25) - Mikael Granlund (8-23-31, +23) have totaled 86 points (33-53=86) and a plus-69 rating. Koivu leads the NHL in that span in plus/minus rating, while Granlund is third and Zucker is T-5th. The Wild has gone 23-4-3 in that span.

At the rink 

Calgary native Devan Dubnyk will get the start in goal for the Wild on Wednesday as Minnesota plays its second of back-to-back games. 

Dubnyk, who got an extra day of rest after his appearance in the All-Star Game over the weekend, was happy with the extended break after a busy few days in Los Angeles.

"Realistically, I could have gone [in Edmonton], but with the back-to-back and [if] I'm only going to get one of them anyway, it makes sense to have a break," Dubnyk said. "It gives you that extra day Sunday night, with family. It was a short break to begin with, but you can kind of relax a little bit and enjoy the night and get some rest on Monday."

Minnesota will put its franchise record 14-game road point streak on the line against the Flames, having gone 12-0-2 during that stretch, which began at the Scotiabank Saddledome with a 3-2 shootout loss on Dec. 2. 

"I think when you're rolling, the confidence is up," said Wild forward Mikael Granlund. "We're doing a lot of good things on the road. We really want to be responsible with the puck and play good defensively and we know when we do that, we're going to get our chances. 

"It's been a good stretch on the road. Let's just keep doing that."

Playing for the second time in 24 hours, the Wild had a limited morning skate on Wednesday at the Saddledome. Only a handful of players hit the ice, including both goaltenders. 

Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said he would go with the same forward group but will insert Christian Folin back into the lineup in place of Nate Prosser. It will be the Folin's first time in the lineup since Jan. 21.

Here are the projected lineups:


Nino Niederreiter - Eric Staal - Charlie Coyle

Mikael Granlund - Mikko Koivu - Jason Zucker

Zach Parise - Erik Haula - Jason Pominville

Chris Stewart - Tyler Graovac - Jordan Schroeder

Ryan Suter - Jared Spurgeon

Marco Scandella - Matt Dumba

Mike Reilly - Christian Folin

Devan Dubnyk

Darcy Kuemper


Johnny Gaudreau - Sean Monahan - Troy Brouwer

Matthew Tkachuk - Mikael Backlund - Michael Frolik

Alex Chiasson - Sam Bennett - Kris Versteeg

Lance Bouma - Matt Stajan - Michael Ferland  

Mark Giordano - Dougie Hamilton

T.J. Brodie - Dennis Wideman

Brett Kulak - Deryk Engelland

Brian Elliott

Chad Johnson

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