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Wild-N.Y. Islanders game preview

  • March 18, 2014 - 12:04 AM

6 p.m. at N.Y. Islanders • Nassau Coliseum • FSN, 100.3-FM

Preview: The Wild, which lost 4-1 at Boston on Monday, and the Islanders meet for the second time. The first time didn’t go well for Minnesota. It built a 3-0 lead at home Dec. 29 but lost 5-4 in regulation. The Islanders are 2-8-1 in their past 11 at home and are coming off a 4-1 victory over Buffalo, their first regulation home win since Jan. 6. The Wild is 8-6-1 all-time vs. the Islanders, 3-4 in New York.

Players to watch: Wild LW Matt Moulson will return to Long Island for the first time since being traded to Buffalo in the Thomas Vanek trade on Oct. 27. He recorded three 30-goal seasons with the Islanders and is tied for 20th in franchise history with 118 goals. It also will be RW Nino Niederreiter’s first return to Uniondale since last summer’s trade for Cal Clutterbuck. Niederreiter scored a goal and assist against the Isles in the December meeting. LW Zach Parise has 39 points in 42 games against the Islanders, his most vs. any team. G Ilya Bryzgalov is expected to make his second start with the Wild. He lost 3-2 in a shootout to St. Louis on March 9. Isles F Kyle Okposo, godfather to one of Moulson’s children, was named the NHL’s Second Star of the Week on Monday. He scored one goal and six assists in three games last week. Edina’s Anders Lee has four goals and eight points in the past six games.

Numbers: The Wild is 3-3-2 in the second of back-to-backs. … Okposo, a former Gopher and native of St. Paul, has 99 career goals. … The Isles have allowed the first goal in 23 of their past 31 games.

Injuries: Wild F Jason Zucker (leg) is out. Islanders C John Tavares (knee) is out and LW Michael Grabner (concussion) is doubtful.

MICHAEL RUSSO

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