Backstrom hurt as Wild lose in Nashville

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 9, 2013 - 7:14 AM

Nashville scored three first-period goals and held on to keep the Wild winless in its first three games.

 

– We’re three games into the season, and the Wild has yet to win a game, has lost its second-line center and now its No. 1 goalie.

This wasn’t exactly the start the Wild envisioned.

One game after Charlie Coyle sprained a knee, goaltender Niklas Backstrom was injured in the first period of Tuesday night’s 3-2 loss to the Nashville Predators when former teammate Eric Nystrom crashed into him after being tripped on a breakaway.

The back of Backstrom’s right leg slammed hard against the goal post. Backstrom, who has had a myriad of lower-body injuries the past four seasons including before last year’s playoffs, limped off with another undisclosed one. He will be reevaluated Wednesday but was limping noticeably after the game.

Josh Harding entered cold off the bench and in the unenviable position of having to face a penalty shot. Nystrom, sent to the minors by the Wild in 2011 and eventually traded to Dallas, capitalized to score the eventual winner in a game the Predators actually trailed by a goal at one juncture.

“I’ve never seen that before, a goalie having to come off the bench and jump into a penalty shot,” said coach Mike Yeo, who has had to deal with his share of goalie drama during his two-years-plus tenure.

The Wild is 0-1-2 after losing its first Central Division matchup ever. This was the first of three consecutive games against divisional foes. Like in its previous two losses, games where at least the Wild earned a point, the Wild felt it deserved better.

The Wild outplayed the Predators for large stretches, gave up almost nothing at even-strength and tilted the ice in terms of scoring chances until running out of gas in the third.

But other than power-play goals by Zach Parise and Jared Spurgeon, the Wild again couldn’t score in the clutch again.

“It’s frustrating,” defenseman Ryan Suter said. “You can’t be happy, you can’t be satisfied. We’re doing a lot of good things, just not getting wins. We’ve got to learn. Good teams know how to get wins out of situations like this.”

The Wild took a 1-0 lead early in the first when Mikko Koivu set up Parise with a one-time goalmouth pass for a tap-in. But 10 seconds later, Kyle Brodziak took an interference penalty. Twenty-one seconds after that, Koivu a tripping penalty.

On a long 5-on-3, Filip Forsberg scored his first NHL goal and Colin Wilson sniped a bullet over Backstrom’s right shoulder 39 seconds apart. The game unraveled quickly after that.

Just 5½ minutes later, defenseman Keith Ballard, who had a tough game, couldn’t corral Justin Fontaine’s bank pass off the side boards at the blue line. He fanned on a dump-in, resulting in a retreating foot race with Nystrom.

Ballard says he poked Nystrom’s stick and Nystrom toe-picked into Backstrom, who was injured. In came Harding … after the penalty shot was awarded.

“Felt pretty good to get a game-winner, especially against Minnesota,” Nystrom said. “That’s a team that I kind of had some unfortunate circumstance with and wasn’t particularly happy with the way I got treated there.”

Nino Niederreiter set up Spurgeon on the power play in the second, but Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne didn’t give up another goal despite being peppered at times.

“But we can’t keep saying that,” Yeo said, referring to being stymied by goalies.

  • related content

  • Photo gallery: Nashville 3, Wild 2

    Tuesday October 8, 2013

    One game after Charlie Coyle sprained his knee, goaltender Niklas Backstrom was injured in the first period of Tuesday...

  • BOXSCORE: Nashville 3, Wild 2

    Tuesday October 8, 2013

  • Nashville coach asked fans to boo Suter in his return

    Wednesday October 9, 2013

    In August, Barry Trotz told a Nashville radio station regarding the Wild, “They stole Ryan Suter, so I want to kick their butt, plain and simple.”

  • Video: Highlights: Predators hold off Wild

    Wednesday October 9, 2013

    Filip Forsberg and Colin Wilson scored power-play goals 39 seconds apart in the first as the Predators earned their...

  • Nashville Predators forward Eric Nystrom, left, collides with Minnesota Wild goalie Niklas Backstrom (32), of Finland, after being slashed, resulting in a penalty shot in the first period of an NHL hockey game on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

  • Minnesota Wild goalie Niklas Backstrom, right, of Finland, is attended to after colliding with Nashville Predators forward Eric Nystrom and was taken out of the game in the first period of an NHL hockey game on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Zaleski)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Oakland - LP: D. Otero 8 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: J. Frasor 9
Minnesota 10/2/14 7:25 PM
Green Bay
Buffalo 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Chicago 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Cleveland 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
St. Louis 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Atlanta 10/5/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Tampa Bay 10/5/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Houston 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Dallas
Baltimore 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Pittsburgh 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Arizona 10/5/14 3:05 PM
Denver
Kansas City 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
NY Jets 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Diego
Cincinnati 10/5/14 7:30 PM
New England
Seattle 10/6/14 7:30 PM
Washington
NY Islanders 5 FINAL
Boston 3
NY Rangers 2 FINAL
Philadelphia 4
Ottawa 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Tampa Bay 5 FINAL
Dallas 1
Colorado 0 FINAL
Calgary 2
Los Angeles 4 FINAL
San Jose 1
Fla Atlantic 10/2/14 6:00 PM
FIU
UCF 10/2/14 6:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 10/2/14 9:30 PM
(2) Oregon
Louisville 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Syracuse
San Diego St 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Utah State 10/3/14 9:15 PM
(18) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(12) Miss State
Ball State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Army
Iowa State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(21) Oklahoma State
Marshall 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Old Dominion
Southern Miss 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Middle Tennessee
(20) Ohio State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Maryland
Purdue 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Florida 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
SMU 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(22) East Carolina
Virginia Tech 10/4/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Eastern Mich 10/4/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Texas 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Indiana
Massachusetts 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Tulsa 10/4/14 2:00 PM
Colorado State
New Mexico 10/4/14 2:30 PM
TX-San Antonio
(3) Alabama 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(11) Ole Miss
(14) Stanford 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(9) Notre Dame
(17) Wisconsin 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Navy 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
(7) Baylor 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Texas
(4) Oklahoma 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(25) TCU
Wake Forest 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
NC State 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Clemson
Buffalo 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Bowling Green
Ohio U 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Central Mich
Oregon State 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Colorado
Vanderbilt 10/4/14 3:00 PM
(13) Georgia
Kansas 10/4/14 3:00 PM
West Virginia
Kent State 10/4/14 4:00 PM
Northern Ill
South Alabama 10/4/14 5:00 PM
Appalachian St
Texas-El Paso 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
(15) LSU 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
UAB 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Ky
Texas Tech 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(23) Kansas State
Michigan 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rutgers
Hawaii 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rice
Toledo 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Mich
ULM 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Georgia State 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
Idaho 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Texas State
Memphis 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Arizona State 10/4/14 6:30 PM
(16) USC
So Carolina 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Kentucky
Pittsburgh 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Virginia
Miami-Florida 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Georgia Tech
(19) Nebraska 10/4/14 7:00 PM
(10) Michigan State
UNLV 10/4/14 7:00 PM
San Jose St
Ga Southern 10/4/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Utah 10/4/14 9:30 PM
(8) UCLA
Boise State 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Winnipeg 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Edmonton 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close