Preview: Wild at Anaheim

  • Updated: January 31, 2013 - 9:31 PM

Preview: The Wild, coming off a shootout victory over Chicago, has points in three consecutive games (2-0-1). Since a 5-0 loss to Vancouver, the Ducks have played two shootouts -- beating Nashville and losing to San Jose. The Wild won both its games in Anaheim last year.

Players to watch: For the Wild, G Niklas Backstrom, who stopped 28 of 28 shots in relief of Josh Harding on Wednesday against Chicago, is expected to start. D Tom Gilbert has a four-game point streak. C Mikko Koivu and RW Pierre-Marc Bouchard have 21 career points vs. the Ducks. For the Ducks, Teemu Selanne and Corey Perry have 27 points each against the Wild, while G Jonas Hiller is 7-4-1 with a 2.47 goals-against average. Saku Koivu and Daniel Winnik lead Anaheim with seven points each.

Numbers: The Wild, which ranked 30th in 5-on-5 goals last year, is 11th this year with 11. ... It allows 27 shots a game -- sixth lowest in the NHL; Anaheim is second best at 25.4. The Wild ranks 27th in shots per game (27.1); the Ducks 28th at 26.4.

Injuries: Wild D Jared Spurgeon (foot) is out. Ducks D Hampus Lindholm (concussion) is out.

MICHAEL RUSSO

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