Found January 30, 2013 on Fox Sports North:
ST. PAUL, Minn. Minnesota Wild coach Mike Yeo had seen his top line of Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Dany Heatley score 10 of the team's 13 goals through the first five games and pleaded for more support after Minnesota lost in overtime at St. Louis on Sunday. Returning home, the Wild got the secondary scoring it needed and everyone could appreciate who supplied the help. Pierre-Marc Bouchard, who has returned to the Minnesota lineup this season after three years plagued by concussion symptoms, scored the game-winner to give the Wild a 3-2 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets Tuesday night. Bouchard, who has played in every game this season after being limited to 97 games the past three seasons, scored his second goal of the season with 5:19 seconds left in the third period after Columbus had erased a 2-0 Minnesota lead. "Yeah, it's pretty fun," Bouchard said. "The last few years have been pretty tough. It's good to be back and play those kinds of games and win some hockey games." Koivu and defenseman Tom Gilbert also scored for the Wild (3-2-1). Koivu added an assist on Gilbert's goal as the top line continued to generate scoring chances. "Obviously our top line's been doing a pretty good job for us and that's to be expected," Gilbert said. "They're great players. Tonight was a great effort from all the lines. Guys are itching to get that goal, their first goal of the year and its coming. It's coming; just got to stick with it and it will come." Bouchard's goal Tuesday came in an unexpected manner. Bouchard, who has been playing on the second line with rookie Mikael Granlund and Devin Setoguchi, took the ice with Zenon Konopka and Torrey Mitchell on the fourth line after Minnesota had been on the penalty kill three times in the period. Bouchard had taken Darroll Powe's spot for a shift and Mitchell found Bouchard crossing the blue line, gave him the pass and Bouchard wristed a shot high past Blue Jackets goaltender Steve Mason's glove hand. Bouchard's goal was his first since scoring in the season-opener against the Colorado Avalanche. Bouchard, once a 63-point scorer for Minnesota, doesn't feel he's all the way back after missing much of the past three seasons, but he can feel it coming. "I'm getting there," Bouchard said. "I'm not playing my best hockey so far. I know I can be better. Some aspects, I've been OK, but some aspects I've got to be better." The rest of the lineup was much the same way heading into Tuesday. Yeo's simple message after Sunday's overtime loss was that Parise, Koivu and Heatley needed help. Of the three goals not scored by the top line, Bouchard and Granlund's both came in the first game. Gilbert scored his first of the season on Friday at Detroit. In Sunday's 5-4 overtime loss at St. Louis, Parise had two goals and Koivu and Heatley provided the others. "Mikko's line, they've been playing some solid hockey since the beginning of the season," Bouchard said. "We need to support them. The other lines need to play some better hockey and be a little bit more productive." And everyone on the Wild enjoys seeing Bouchard healthy and productive after the past few seasons. "It's not just all the things he brings every day to the rink, on the ice," said goaltender Niklas Backstrom, who made 17 saves. "It's more for him. It's hard for a hockey player to be out, to be hurt. Look at his last three years, it's been really tough for him, so it's just fun to see him here every day at the rink with us." Follow Brian Hall on Twitter.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Wild look to halt three-game losing skid

Zach Parise and the rest of the Minnesota Wild's top line are living up to lofty expectations. Collectively, the Wild are falling well short. Parise looks to continue his offensive barrage and help Minnesota halt a three-game slide in a matchup with the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night. Parise was born in Minneapolis and is the son of J.P. Parise, a former captain with...

Wild fine-tuning in the wake of St. Louis loss

MONDAY'S STORY LINES: With their 5-4 overtime loss to St. Louis still fresh on their minds the Wild took the ice Monday at the Xcel Energy Center intent on learning from their recent mistakes. Minnesota went into the third period holding a 3-2 lead over the Blues. Minnesota was outplayed in the third by a St. Louis team that was playing its second game in as many days. The Blues...

Josh Harding benched, takes his frustration out on a wall

Josh Harding's story has been pretty miraculous. The goaltender recently picked up a shutout for the Minnesota Wild in his first game back after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Unfortunately, Harding's start against the Chicago Blackhawks was a bumpy one, earning Harding some time on the bench not even seven minutes into the first period. As Niklas Backstrom took...

Wild pass early test in victory over Blackhawks

ST. PAUL, Minn. When the Minnesota Wild went on their summer shopping spree to land big-name free agents Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, fans of the team envisioned long playoff runs, Stanley Cups and parades down the streets of St. Paul. All of the hype surrounding Parise and Suter overshadowed one important fact. The first step for Minnesota is getting back into the playoffs, after...

Wild 3, Blue Jackets 2

Pierre-Marc Bouchard scored the go-ahead goal late in the third period and the Minnesota Wild snapped a three-game losing streak by beating the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 on Tuesday night. With the Wild seemingly on their heels after giving up a two-goal lead, Bouchard took a pass from Torrey Mitchell near the blue line, zoomed past two Columbus defenders and beat goalie Steve Mason...

Wild snap Blackhawks perfect start

Matt Cullen scored 90 seconds into the game and again in a shootout to lift the Minnesota Wild to a 3-2 victory over Chicago on Wednesday, handing the Blackhawks their first loss in seven games this season. Cullen's snap shot in the third round slipped between Corey Crawford's legs, and Patrick Sharp then hit the crossbar for Chicago. The Blackhawks and San Jose were the...

Bouchard's tiebreaking goal propels Wild over Blue Jackets

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Wild's top line has been as dominant as any in the NHL early in this shortened season, but the team has lacked secondary offense. That is, until Pierre-Marc Bouchard somehow ended up on the fourth line. Playing on a juggled offensive unit, Bouchard scored his 100th career goal late in the third period Tuesday, and it lifted the Wild to a 3-2...

Wild win in a Shootout 3-2

The WCHA was well represented tonight. Here is the video of the shootout. Shooting is former Fighting Sioux forwards Zach Parise and Jonathan Toews. Also, Mikko Koivu, Patrick. Kane, former Saint Cloud State Husky Matt Cullen and Patrick Sharp shootout attempts. Blackhawks forward Jonathan Toews has a 50 percent success rate in the shootouts. That's incredible in my opinion.

Wild win shootout, hand Blackhawks first loss of season

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- With the Chicago Blackhawks off to the best start in their long franchise history, it was likely to take an extra effort to beat them. On Wednesday, the Minnesota Wild logged that extra effort, throughout overtime and a shootout and handed the Blackhawks their first loss. Zach Parise and Matt Cullen scored in the shootout as the Wild won, 3-2. Cullen also scored...

Game Preview: Minnesota Wild vs. Columbus Blue Jackets 1/29/2013 @ 7:00PM CST at Xcel Energy Center

Minnesota Wild (2-2-1)  5pts  (3rd in the Northwest) 2.60 Goals For per Game (19th in the NHL) 3.00 Goals Against per Game (20th in the NHL) 15th ranked Power Play (20.8%) 10th ranked Penalty Kill (85%) Top 5 Scorers: 1. #11 Zach Parise ~ 5G 4A = 9pts 2. #15 Dany Heatley ~ 4G 2A = 6pts 3. #9 Mikko Koivu ~ 1G 5A = 6pts 4. #77 Tom Gilbert ~ 1G...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.