Who: Minnesota Wild (10-7-2, 22 points, third place, Central Division) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (12-5-3, 27 points, second place, Metropolitan Division)
Puck drop: 3:08 p.m. CT
Listen: KFAN FM 100.3
Follow: @mnwild; GameCenter
The Pittsburgh Penguins are coming off perhaps their most impressive win of the season, a 6-1 victory over the NHL's best team, the New York Rangers, on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden. Sidney Crosby scored twice in the game and is tied for the League lead in goals despite playing in just 14 games this season.
• Penguins forward Matt Cullen, a former Moorhead Spud and St. Cloud State Husky, played three seasons with the Wild from 2010-13, scoring 33 goals and 101 points in 193 games.
• Penguins forward Jake Guentzel, a native of Woodbury and former Hill-Murray Pioneer, will play his third game in the NHL and first back in his home state. He scored two goals Monday in his NHL debut against the Rangers, including one on his first shift. He became the first Penguin since Mario Lemieux to accomplish the feat.
Minnesota has played on Black Friday every season of its existence, posting an 8-5-0-1 record the day after Thanksgiving, including a tie (yes, they used to award those) back in 2002. The Wild has typically played these games at the friendly confines of Xcel Energy Center, hitting the road just once on this day (an overtime win over Dallas in 2014). However, this year, Minnesota will try to snap a three-game Black Friday losing streak at home.
At the Rink
With the early start time, neither team hit the ice for a skate this morning.
Here are the projected lineups:
Zach Parise - Eric Staal - Charlie Coyle
Mikael Granlund - Mikko Koivu - Jason Zucker
Nino Niederreiter - Erik Haula - Jason Pominville
Zack Mitchell - Tyler Graovac - Chris Stewart
Ryan Suter - Jared Spurgeon
Marco Scandella - Matt Dumba
Jonas Brodin - Christian Folin
Carl Hagelin - Sidney Crosby - Conor Sheary
Jake Guentzel - Evgeni Malkin - Phil Kessel
Scott Wilson - Nick Bonino - Bryan Rust
Tom Kuhnhackl - Matt Cullen - Eric Fehr
Olli Maatta - Kris Letang
Brian Dumoulin - Trevor Daley
Ian Cole - Justin Schultz