|19||MINNESOTA||+125||Ov 5,+100||+115||Ov 5,+110|
|20||PHOENIX||-145||Un 5,-120||-135||Un 5,-130|
|Team Stats (Road Games)||2-6-0||-4.1||2-6||-4.1||2-6||2.0||25.0||2.7||29.4|
|Last 5 Games||3-2-0||+0.3||3-2||+0.3||1-3||2.4||28.4||2.2||27.8|
|Team Stats (All Games)||18||39||7||18||10||4||2||486||8.0%||65||9||13.8%||64|
|Team Stats (Road Games)||8||16||2||9||4||1||1||200||8.0%||28||4||14.3%||25|
|Team Stats (Last 5 Games)||5||12||1||5||5||1||0||142||8.5%||15||1||6.7%||18|
|Stats Against (All Games)|| ||43||13||15||13||2||2||495||8.7%||60||9||15.0%||72|
|Stats Against (Road Games)|| ||22||4||9||8||1||1||235||9.4%||20||4||20.0%||40|
|Stats Against (Last 5 Games)|| ||11||3||4||3||1||2||139||7.9%||15||2||13.3%||17|
|NIKLAS BACKSTROM (All Games)||14||13||372||342||91.9%||0||6-7||-2.2||6-7-0||-3||3-9|
|NIKLAS BACKSTROM (Road Games)||6||6||177||163||92.1%||0||2-4||-2.1||2-4-0||-2||1-5|
|NIKLAS BACKSTROM (Last 4 Games)||4||4||107||100||93.5%||0||2-2||-0.7||2-2-0||-1||1-3|
|JOSH HARDING (All Games)||4||3||61||54||88.5%||1||2-1||+1.2||2-1-0||+1||1-2|
|JOSH HARDING (Road Games)||1||1||27||22||81.5%||0||0-1||-1||0-1-0||-1||1-0|
|JOSH HARDING (Last 4 Games)||4||3||61||54||88.5%||1||2-1||+1.2||2-1-0||+1||1-2|
|DARCY KUEMPER (All Games)||2||2||61||57||93.4%||0||1-1||0||1-1-0||0||0-1|
|DARCY KUEMPER (Road Games)||1||1||30||28||93.3%||0||0-1||-1||0-1-0||-1||0-1|
|DARCY KUEMPER (Last 4 Games)||2||2||61||57||93.4%||0||1-1||0||1-1-0||0||0-1|
|Team Stats (Home Games)||6-4-0||+1.5||6-4||+1.5||5-5||3.1||32.1||2.3||25.2|
|Last 5 Games||3-2-0||+1.2||3-2||+1.2||3-1||3.8||31.4||2.6||31.0|
|Team Stats (All Games)||19||54||11||17||24||2||3||585||9.2%||77||13||16.9%||91|
|Team Stats (Home Games)||10||31||7||8||16||0||1||321||9.7%||38||7||18.4%||56|
|Team Stats (Last 5 Games)||5||19||6||4||9||0||2||157||12.1%||21||3||14.3%||34|
|Stats Against (All Games)|| ||51||13||19||16||3||3||547||9.3%||66||10||15.2%||85|
|Stats Against (Home Games)|| ||23||8||11||3||1||0||252||9.1%||34||4||11.8%||37|
|Stats Against (Last 5 Games)|| ||13||3||5||4||1||1||155||8.4%||13||1||7.7%||23|
|BRENT JOHNSON (All Games)||2||2||42||40||95.2%||1||1-1||-0.3||1-1-0||0||0-2|
|BRENT JOHNSON (Home Games)||2||2||42||40||95.2%||1||1-1||-0.3||1-1-0||0||0-2|
|CHAD JOHNSON (All Games)||0||0||0||0||0.0%||0||0-0||0||0-0-0||0||0-0|
|CHAD JOHNSON (Home Games)||0||0||0||0||0.0%||0||0-0||0||0-0-0||0||0-0|
|CHAD JOHNSON (Last 4 Games)||0||0||0||0||0.0%||0||0-0||0||0-0-0||0||0-0|
|JASON LABARBERA (All Games)||4||2||98||89||90.8%||0||0-2||-2||0-2-0||-2||2-0|
|JASON LABARBERA (Home Games)||3||1||64||59||92.2%||0||0-1||-1||0-1-0||-1||1-0|
|JASON LABARBERA (Last 4 Games)||4||2||98||89||90.8%||0||0-2||-2||0-2-0||-2||2-0|
|MIKE SMITH (All Games)||15||15||406||369||90.9%||3||8-7||+1.2||8-7-0||+2||8-5|
|MIKE SMITH (Home Games)||7||7||146||130||89.0%||2||5-2||+2.8||5-2-0||+3||4-3|
|MIKE SMITH (Last 4 Games)||4||4||135||126||93.3%||1||2-2||+0.1||2-2-0||+1||2-1|
|Average power rating of opponents played: MINNESOTA 3.03, PHOENIX 3.06|
|2/1/2013||at ANAHEIM||1-3||L||0, +105||L||5.5 un||U|
|2/4/2013||at PHOENIX||1-2||L||0, +120||L||5 ov||U|
|2/7/2013||VANCOUVER||1-4||L||0, +105||L||5 un||P|
|2/9/2013||NASHVILLE||2-1||W||0, -135||W||5 un||U|
|2/11/2013||at CALGARY||2-1||W||0, -110||W||5 ov||U|
|2/12/2013||at VANCOUVER||1-2||L||0, +195||L||5 ov||U|
|2/14/2013||COLORADO||3-4||L||0, -160||L||5 ev||O|
|2/17/2013||DETROIT||3-2||W||0, -145||W||5 ov||P|
|2/21/2013||at EDMONTON||3-1||W||0, -105||W||5 ev||U|
|2/23/2013||at CALGARY||1-3||L||0, -110||L||5 ev||U|
|2/26/2013||CALGARY||2-1||W||0, -155||W||5 ov||U|
|2/28/2013||at PHOENIX|| |
|3/1/2013||at ANAHEIM|| |
|3/5/2013||at CHICAGO|| |
|3/9/2013||at NASHVILLE|| |
|2/1/2013||at DALLAS||3-4||L||0, -105||L||5 ov||O|
|2/2/2013||DALLAS||2-0||W||0, -155||W||5 ov||U|
|2/4/2013||MINNESOTA||2-1||W||0, -140||W||5 ov||U|
|2/7/2013||CHICAGO||2-6||L||0, -110||L||5.5 un||O|
|2/9/2013||at SAN JOSE||1-0||W||0, +140||W||5.5 un||U|
|2/11/2013||at COLORADO||3-2||W||0, -115||W||5 ov||P|
|2/14/2013||at NASHVILLE||0-3||L||0, +100||L||5 un||U|
|2/16/2013||COLUMBUS||5-3||W||0, -230||W||5 ov||O|
|2/18/2013||CALGARY||4-0||W||0, -175||W||5.5 un||U|
|2/23/2013||at EDMONTON||2-3||L||0, -135||L||5 ov||P|
|2/24/2013||at CALGARY||4-5||L||0, -110||L||5.5 un||O|
|2/26/2013||at VANCOUVER||4-2||W||0, +160||W||5 ov||O|
|3/6/2013||at ANAHEIM|| |
|3/7/2013||ST LOUIS|| |
LAST SEASON: 35-36-11, 81 points.
COACH: Mike Yeo, 2nd season, 35-36-11.
ADDED: LW Zach Parise, D Ryan Suter, C Mikael Granlund, LW Torrey Mitchell, C Zenon Konopka, C Jake Dowell.
LOST: LW Guillaume Latendresse, RW Nick Johnson, LW Warren Peters, RW Jed Ortmeyer, D Mike Lundin, C Erik Christensen, D Kurtis Foster.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Parise and Suter are the headliners, their identical 13-year, $98 million contracts serving as July 4 fireworks over the NHL free agent market, but the Finnish sensation Granlund is being given a spot on the second line before his 21st birthday. The ninth overall pick in the 2010 draft is so popular in his home country that paparazzi follow him around town. The 5-foot-10, 180-pound, slick-with-the-stick scorer spent the lockout playing for the Wild's AHL affiliate. He had 20 goals and 31 assists in 45 games last season for his club in Helsinki.
OUTLOOK: The Wild had the league's best record at 20-7-3 at the 30-game mark but nosedived down the stretch under the weight of myriad injuries. After signing Parise, bringing Granlund over and getting Pierre-Marc Bouchard back from another lengthy concussion absence, the Wild have unquestionably the deepest and most talented group of forwards in the franchise's 13-year history. Staying healthy in a fast-paced condensed season will be critical, of course, but the key to making the playoffs for the first time in five years is on the blue line, where veterans Suter and Tom Gilbert will need help from young players like Jared Spurgeon, Clayton Stoner and Marco Scandella.
LAST SEASON: 42-27-13, 97 points. Lost to Los Angeles Kings 4-1 in Western Conference Finals.
COACH: Dave Tippett, 4th season with Coyotes, 125-78-33; 9th overall, 406-234-98 in NHL.
ADDED: LW Steve Sullivan, D Zbynek Michalek, RW David Moss.
LOST: LW Ray Whitney, LW Taylor Pyatt, D Adrian Aucoin, C Daymond Langkow, D Michal Rozsival.
PLAYER TO WATCH: G Mike Smith. The shaggy-haired goalie known as Smitty proved to be a more-than-capable No. 1 goalie in his first full season on the job, winning 28 games with eight shutouts and a 2.21 goals-against average. With the confidence of last season's deep playoff run, he could be a Vezina Trophy candidate.
OUTLOOK: The Coyotes should be brimming with confidence after winning their first division title and reaching the conference finals for the first time in 33 years as an NHL franchise. With the core of last year's roster back, they should be position to get the lockout-shortened season off to a good start and be able to sustain it toward another possible deep run in the playoffs.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER HOCKEY PREVIEW (MINNESOTA-PHOENIX) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Wild-Coyotes Preview* ======================
By JEFF BARTL STATS Writer
Minnesota (9-7-2) at Phoenix (9-7-3), 9:00 p.m. EDT
Minnesota Wild coach Mike Yeo has been trying to tame expectations for his club, which is a tall order given the nearly $200 million dollars committed to signing Zach Parise and Ryan Suter in the offseason.
Despite having some trouble scoring, though, Minnesota has been on a bit of a roll lately.
The Wild seek a fourth victory in their last five tries Thursday night as they visit the Phoenix Coyotes, who are hoping to have Martin Hanzal and Radim Vrbata back from injury.
Minnesota (9-7-2) hasn't gotten off to the ideal start it hoped for with Parise and Suter in the mix, though it has come on stronger of late. Parise scored a power-play goal in overtime to give the Wild a 2-1 win over Calgary on Tuesday as they improved to 5-2-1 over their last eight.
"If we thought that we were just going to sign a couple players and all of a sudden we've arrived, and they were going to open the gates, and here we are, a playoff team, that's not reality," Yeo said. "It's hard. You have to do a lot of things to be a winner, to find yourself at that point.
"I thought this was a huge step for our club."
The scoring troubles, though, haven't been cured, as Minnesota didn't find the back of the net until Jason Zucker tied the score with 4:19 remaining in the third. It has scored a league-worst 37 non-shootout goals and is only 2 for 24 on the power play over its last seven games.
The Wild have netted more than three goals only twice - a 4-2 win over Colorado in their season opener Jan. 19 and a 5-4 overtime loss at St. Louis on Jan. 27.
"It's been like that for a little while where game after game you start to ask yourself, 'What can we do different?' and that's not the answer," Parise said. "The puck will go in for us, but when it's not you have to make sure you're not questioning what you're doing."
Parise scored Minnesota's lone goal in a 2-1 loss at Phoenix on Feb. 4, as the Coyotes won for the third time in the last four meetings.
Hanzal scored what proved to be the game-winner off an assist from Vrbata in that contest, though Hanzal (upper-body injury) has missed the last three games and Vrbata (lower-body injury) the last four.
It's unclear if either will be able to return Thursday as Phoenix (9-7-3) begins a stretch of six of seven at home, where it has won four of the last five.
The Coyotes went 1-1-1 on their road trip after Kyle Chipchura scored twice in Tuesday's 4-2 win over Vancouver. Antoine Vermette and Mikkel Boedker each had a goal and an assist as Phoenix remained aggressive despite holding a two-goal lead in the third period.
"In previous games when we took the lead we would kind of sat back a bit," Boedker said. "We have more success when we press the opponent down in their end."
Mike Smith made 21 saves in the first meeting with the Wild, while Niklas Backstrom - 4-1-1 with a 1.45 goals-against average in his last six starts - stopped 32 shots in that contest.
Minnesota will be without forward Cal Clutterbuck, who was placed on injured reserve Tuesday with a thigh contusion.
|Last Updated: 12/20/2014 4:51:14 PM EST|