Originally posted on Fox Sports North  |  Last updated 4/24/13

DALLAS - FEBRUARY 02: Left wing Steve Ott #29 of the Dallas Stars fights with Cal Clutterbuck #22 of the Minnesota Wild in the first period at American Airlines Center on February 2, 2010 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
ST. PAUL, Minn. Cal Clutterbuck has played 344 games in his six-year career for the Minnesota Wild, one of the last remaining players from the 2007-08 team that advanced to the playoffs. Clutterbuck, then a rookie who played in just two games, didn't get to play in Minnesota's last playoff appearance in 2007-08 and has never had the chance to feel the playoff atmosphere. Tuesday might as well have been a playoff game to Clutterbuck and the Wild. Clinging to the seventh spot in the Western Conference, tied with the Columbus Blue Jackets with 51 points but holding the tiebreaker with the most regulation wins, Minnesota got a much-needed win at home against the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings with Clutterbuck scoring the game-winning goal in a 2-1 victory. Clutterbuck snapped an 18-game goalless streak with the snap of a wrist shot that beat Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Bernier in the first period, the second of the two goals for the Wild within 16 seconds and the veteran forward jumped into the glass, jubilant after his fourth goal of the season. "This was a huge game for our team," Clutterbuck said. "This was probably the biggest game I've ever played in for this franchise, so I was excited." Rookie Charlie Coyle had scored his eighth of the season just the shift before to ignite the Wild, who now 53 points and are two points clear of idle Columbus in eighth place, three ahead of idle, ninth-place Detroit and five up on 10th place Dallas, who played at San Jose late Tuesday. The Wild snapped a five-game losing streak at home and secured a much-needed two points with just two games remaining in the season. Clutterbuck's play Tuesday, after being elevated to the second line with Matt Cullen and Pierre-Marc Bouchard, highlighted Minnesota's level of urgency for a win against the Kings. Clutterbuck's goal was his first since March 16. "Just because we've got an opportunity to make the playoffs and this was a huge, huge game for us," Clutterbuck said, describing why it's the most important game he's played in for the Wild. "I would have been just as excited if Cullen had scored, that's just the way I am. I just really am an emotional guy." The self-admitted emotional and energetic forward did what he always does, supplying a physical game for Minnesota, tying center Kyle Brodziak with a team-high six hits Tuesday. Clutterbuck displayed in his play how important Tuesday's game was to him, and the Wild. "What was really important to me was that he was going out and he was a real physical impact in the game," coach Mike Yeo said. "He was going forward with pucks and helping Cully and Seto get going with speed to the offensive zone, and I thought he was a nice complement." The game that saw the Wild lose forward Jason Pominville after he took an elbow to the chin from Los Angeles forward Dustin Brown, took on the physical nature and playoff intensity. "That's setting the bar for what we need, going forward, and the idea is to keep raising the bar," Yeo said. "It was obviously a very strong game, but again the bar has been set and we've got to make sure we're ready to bring at least that the next game."Minnesota hosts Edmonton on Friday before finishing the regular season Sunday at Colorado. Pominville out: After taking the elbow from Brown midway through the second period, Pominville missed the rest of the game. Brown had the puck near the side boards and Pominville closed in. As Pominville approached, Brown turned towards Pominville and connected with his elbow. No penalty was called. Pominville went down and was visibly shaken as he skated off the ice. Yeo didn't have an update on Pominville's status after the game. The Wild didn't retaliate. Clutterbuck said the importance was on getting the win. "It's difficult," Clutterbuck said. "At the same time, we had a clear goal in mind that we couldn't really allow ourselves to get distracted. I think the way things are these days, if somebody feels it deserves a second look then they will take a second look." Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter said he isn't worried about the play being reviewed by the league. Brown was also part of a collision in Sunday's game at Dallas in which he appeared to clip a Stars player. Brown wasn't penalized for that play either and didn't face any disciplinary action from the league. "I haven't seen it yet, but I have the puck on my stick, he's coming to hit me, I'm just bracing myself," Brown said after the game. "Almost the reverse, I don't know, like I said, I haven't seen it yet." Follow Brian Hall on Twitter.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rams owner buys massive 520,000-acre Texas ranch

Cam Newton explains why he did not dive on fumble

George Karl’s agent rips Kings, wants broadcaster reprimanded

WATCH: Popovich has funny reaction to New Hampshire results

Suns vets pull packing peanut prank on rookie Devin Booker

Teammate gives Manning final completion ball from Super Bowl

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss Football cited in 13 of 28 department violations by NCAA

Larry Sanders to consider NBA comeback after other interests stabilize

The NCAAB power rankings

SEC begins crying foul over Jim Harbaugh’s spring break plans at Michigan

Marc Gasol reportedly out indefinitely with broken foot

Patriots waive Montee Ball despite never officially re-signing running back

WATCH: Blackhawks coach walks out of press conference

Greg McElroy: Cam Newton 'quit on his team'

Tennis umpires secretly banned over gambling issues

WATCH: Dancing Kentucky fan slides down rail, fails

Clemson LB has great response to NFL draft analyst's criticism

Former Aggies QB Kyle Allen reveals culture problems at Texas A&M

Roy Williams collapses during game vs. BC

Panthers TE Greg Olsen shaves off his playoff beard

Derek Fisher thanks Knicks in statement

Miami Heat to honor Shaq by retiring his number 32

Oakland Raiders release Nate Allen

B.J. Penn announces he will return at UFC 197

Bring back the Dunk Contest

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker