Found March 05, 2013 on
Fox Sports North:
TUESDAY'S STORYLINES: The Minnesota Wild know the challenge at hand tonight at the Madhouse on Madison. Minnesota is trying to put a halt to Chicago's impressive 22-game point streak, the longest streak to start an NHL season. Chicago has yet to lose in regulation. They do have three shootout losses, with one of those coming at the hands the Wild on January 30th, the Blackhawks' first loss of the season.
Since that victory back in January, the Wild have come a long way as a team. Zach Parise noted the team struggled to find an identity at the beginning of the season with all the new faces, but they have found their identity of late and it is showing on the ice. Minnesota is 7-3-1 in their last 11 games, and tonight's showdown with the best team in the NHL will be a good measuring stick for the Wild.
"We know that we have to be sharp, and it is a good test for us to see where we are at. We think we have been playing pretty well, but it will be a good measure for us to play the top team in the league," Parise said.
The Blackhawks, who are 12-0-3 in one-goal games, have found a variety of ways to win in their amazing streak.
"They win 1-0 games, or they find ways when the offensive isn't going to play really well defensively. That is the sign of a really good team; they can beat you a bunch of different ways," added Parise.
The Blackhawks have managed to avoid getting caught up in the media hype during their streak. The Wild will have to do the same to be successful tonight. There has been plenty of hype over the game tonight in Chicago, and the Wild need to make sure they stay focused. Take a glance at the Western Conference standings and only two points separate the 3rd and 10th spot. The fight for a playoff spot is going to be a battle in which every game is important.
"Every day is a big game. I think the key for us is not getting caught up in this. I am sure a lot people like to have a great story, and that is great, but for us this is about coming to the rink and finding a way get two points against a great hockey team and most importantly for us it's about continuing to do what we have done and that's becoming a better hockey team," added Mike Yeo.
HE SAID IT: "Our defense has improved, our goaltending has been outstanding and you get the contribution up front. Basically our team game has been consistent from start to finish, particularly when the games are on the line late, and I think that has helped us," Joel Quenneville on his team's success
BACKSTROM VS CRAWFORD: Niklas Backstrom who is 6-1-1 with a 1.70 GAA in his last 8 starts will be in nets for the Wild. Corey Crawford who is 10-0-3 this season with a league best 1.41 GAA will go for the Hawks.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
ST. PAUL, Minn. The scars that line his face still resemble some of the nearly 600 stitches he's endured in his career. "Baker's dozen" is the way he describes how many times he's broken his nose.
He jokes that he has "rugged good looks rather than good looks."
The number of stitches which he says total 580 are points of pride for Zenon Konopka...
ST. PAUL, Minn. Every trip the Minnesota Wild make to play a Northwest Division road game, they change time zones. Traveling to the Mountain Time zone for games at Colorado, Edmonton and Calgary or going with the two-hour switch in the Pacific Time zone in Vancouver, Minnesota's players are well accustomed to changing their wrist watches.
Their watches could get a break if...
In the NHL as in life, a bad bounce can mean good fortune for someone else and during Sunday night's Edmonton Oilers/Minnesota Wild affair, a third period Edmonton goal came courtesy of an unlucky play.
Here's how the play went down: Minnesota captain Mikko Koivu was trying to clear the puck and in the process, the puck deflected off the skate of Oilers forward Sam Gagne...
While in Nashville, Ryan Suter was known as "Robin" to Shea Weber, "Batman". However, on July 4th, Ryan Suter "betrayed" the Nashville Predators' organization and left General Manager David Poile hanging.
Now, Suter returns to Smashville in front of a Saturday night sold crowd, which has been called as loud as the Roman Coliseum by Ken Hitchcock...
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Minnesota Wild @ Chicago Blackhawks
United Center, Chicago
That is the buzz. The Hawks have gone unbeaten in regulationâwith at least one pointâin the first 22 games this season. The Wild come to the UC tonight to try to break it. Itâs really that simple.
Minnesota Wild (11-8-2) 24pts 2nd in the Northwest
2.24 Goals For (26th)
2.38 Goals Against (7th)
14.5% Power Play (23rd)
86.2% Penalty Kill (5th)
Top 5 Scorers:
1. #9 Mikko Koivu ~ 4G 13A = 17pts
2. #11 Zach Parise ~ 8G 7A = 15pts
3. #20 Ryan Suter ~ 0G 14A = 14pts
4. #15 Dany Heatley ~ 8G 4A = 12pts
5. #7 Matt Cullen ~ 3G 9A = 12pts
from Michael Russo of the StarTribune,
With the April 3 trade deadline four weeks away, Wild General Manager Chuck Fletcher is monitoring other teams while also working internally to determine whether he will try to sign any of his potential unrestricted or restricted free agents to extensions.
If unsigned, Matt Cullen, Niklas Backstrom and Pierre-Marc Bouchard can become...
Hey gang. Hopefully you are all driving safe out there.
The little guy is both ready for the NFL season and in possession of a charming little accent.
This is an issue with the conference tournament/NCAA tournament structure.
Batman was sighted in England.
Minnesota 4, Edmonton 2 – A big home win for the Wild who also somehow scored 4 goals with Zach Parise scoring no goals.