7 p.m. vs. Edmonton Xcel Energy Center FSN Plus, 100.3-FM
Wild, Oilers both looking for needed win
Preview: The Wild is seeking its first victory following an eight-day break in the schedule, and its hopes of making the playoffs took a big hit when captain Mikko Koivu suffered a season-ending knee injury. Winless in its past six games, Edmonton was booed off the ice by home fans after Tuesday’s 6-2 loss to Chicago, when it gave up a third-period lead for the third game in a row.
Players to watch: The Wild’s top defensive pairing, Ryan Suter and Jared Spurgeon, has been providing plenty of offense lately. Suter has two goals and seven assists in his past 10 games, tying him for first among NHL defensemen for most points since Jan. 12. Spurgeon, who scored two goals Tuesday, has six goals and seven assists in his past 15 games; he’s tied for first among league defensemen for most goals since Jan. 3. Edmonton has been carried by Connor McDavid (31 goals, 47 assists) and Leon Draisaitl (31 goals, 34 assists), who have combined for 12 points in the past four games.
Numbers: The Wild leads the NHL in goals scored by defensemen (35) and highest percentage of team goals scored by defensemen (23.5). The Oilers have given up 30 goals during a skid that includes four losses in regulation and two in overtime.
Injuries: Wild F Mikko Koivu (knee surgery), D Matt Dumba (torn pectoral muscle) and F Pontus Aberg (lower-body injury) are out. Oilers D Andrej Sekera (Achilles’ injury) is out.