Gameday preview: Wild at Edmonton
- February 26, 2014 - 9:06 PM
8:30 p.m. at Edmonton • Rexall Place • FSN, 100.3-FM
Preview: The Olympic break finally is over. The Wild, 6-2-2 in its past 10 overall and 12-2 in its past 14 in Edmonton, opens with back-to-back games with the second half coming Friday in Vancouver. The 29th-ranked Oilers actually were playing better hockey before the break, going 5-1-1 in their past seven games. General Manager Craig MacTavish, a Wild coaching candidate before Mike Yeo was hired, is expected to clean house before Wednesday’s trade deadline, with players such as Ales Hemsky, Nick Schultz, Ilya Bryzgalov, Ryan Jones and Ryan Smyth potentially on the move.
Players to watch: Wild D Ryan Suter leads NHLers in average ice time (29 minutes, 49 seconds a game) and has had 29 30-minute games (15 in the past 26 games). F Charlie Coyle has been held without a goal in 22 of the past 23 games. F Nino Niederreiter has goals in two consecutive games. In seven games since returning from a broken foot, LW Zach Parise has four goals, nine points and 28 shots. G Ben Scrivens, who made his Oilers debut in a 4-1 loss to Minnesota on Jan. 16, has a .948 save percentage in his past six starts, including a 59-save shutout over San Jose. LW Taylor Hall is on pace for almost 80 points.
Numbers: The Wild’s 18 victories in Edmonton and 42 wins overall are its most against any franchise. … With 10 road victories, the Wild is tied for the second fewest in the NHL.
Injuries: Wild F Jason Zucker (leg) and D Marco Scandella (knee) are out. C Mikko Koivu (ankle) is questionable.
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