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Game 3 preview: Colorado at Wild

  • April 20, 2014 - 9:18 PM

wild gameday

6 p.m. vs. Colorado • Xcel Energy Center • FSN, 100.3-FM

Preview: The Wild returns to St. Paul down two games to none in the best-of-seven first-round series after losing Games 1 and 2 in Denver. The Avalanche is 12-0 all-time when holding a 2-0 series lead. After coughing up a 4-2 third-period lead and losing Game 1 in overtime, 5-4, the Wild lost 4-2 on Saturday. Colorado’s top line of Gabriel Landeskog, Paul Stastny and Nathan MacKinnon combined for four goals and six assists.

Players to watch: Stastny, who scored the Game 1 tying goal and OT winner, had a career playoff-high four points in Game 2. Stastny and MacKinnon became the first Avalanche teammates to post four points in the same playoff games. Landeskog, the youngest captain in the NHL at 21, has three goals in two games. Wild RW Charlie Coyle, who had five goals in his final 12 regular-season games, has two goals in two playoff games. C Mikko Koivu has three assists in two games. G Darcy Kuemper is expected to make his first career playoff start. He has made three previous appearances.

Numbers: The Avalanche was a league-best 26-11-4 on the road this season. NHL teams that go up 2-0 in a best-of-seven playoff series hold an all-time series record of 287-45 (86.4 percent). … The Avs have beaten Minnesota in five consecutive playoff games dating to 2008.

Injuries: Wild D Keith Ballard (groin) is questionable. G Josh Harding (multiple sclerosis), G Niklas Backstrom (abdominal surgery), LW Mike Rupp (suspended) and LW Jason Zucker (quadriceps) are out. Avalanche C Matt Duchene (knee), C John Mitchell (concussion) and LW Alex Tanguay (hip) are out.

MICHAEL RUSSO

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