Victories with rookie Matt Dumba in the lineup, a healthy top-four defensive corps and the consistency lately of Nate Prosser all combined to knock rookie Christian Folin from the Wild lineup.
Coincidence or not, the Wild is 22-8-1 with Dumba in the lineup, has had its top four of Ryan Suter, Jonas Brodin, Marco Scandella and Jared Spurgeon intact for 10 consecutive games, and Prosser has an even or plus rating for nine consecutive games after being minus-13 his first 37. Prosser also scored the winning goal Saturday.
The Wild believed it was important that Folin, who had been a healthy scratch for six consecutive games, get some playing time. So they sent him to Iowa of the AHL.
He played for a second consecutive day Saturday against the Texas Stars (he's minus-4 in two losses) and likely will be the first call-up option when the Wild needs a defenseman (maybe as early as the upcoming three-game road trip).
As for Prosser, Yeo has been pleased with him on the left side. Not only has he been part of the Wild's 25-for-25 penalty kill since the All-Star break, he has played with an edge and defensively sound.
Yeo said his quality play is due to consistency with the same partner (Dumba), consistency being in the lineup (10 consecutive games) and being given a very defined role (defense, physicality, penalty killing).
It's Dubnyk's cage
Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk made 24 saves in his 13th consecutive start and is now 10-1-1 with a 1.60 goals-against average and .938 save percentage. Darcy Kuemper backed up and Niklas Backstrom was scratched as Yeo continues alternating backups.
Yeo will continue to ride Dubnyk even though Kuemper hasn't started since Jan. 6.
"I know he's ready to go, and I know that he wants to get in, but you look at the way Dubnyk is playing and schedule-wise, I think there's no reason why he can't continue to play," Yeo said.
When Kuemper, who was struggling, does eventually start, Wild players say they have to play the same way in front of him.
"He doesn't need to prove anything to us," Zach Parise said. "We know he's a good goaltender. … We just want all of them feeling good about their game and for us whoever's in, that can't affect how we play our game in front of them."
Relief for Coyle
With Jason Zucker out because of a broken collarbone and Ryan Carter out because of what's believed to be a shoulder injury, Charlie Coyle worried he also suffered a shoulder injury when checked by Florida's Alex Petrovic on Thursday.
Coyle temporarily left the game cradling his arm, but it turned out to be a stinger.
"My arm just went on fire and it was numb and I couldn't feel it," Coyle said. "I've never had that before. It's almost like when your foot falls asleep, only 10 times worse. My strength came back little by little every minute or so. Freaky. "
Yeo also said, "There were a couple people on the bench that just shook their head and said, 'Not right now.'"
'Borat' was back
Carolina goalie Anton Khudobin, selected 206th overall by the Wild in 2004, gave up five goals on 23 shots in his first meeting against his old team. Khudobin, nicknamed by Wild teammates, "Borat," because he's from Kazakhstan, started over Cam Ward because he beat his former Boston Bruins earlier this season and because he entered with a career .959 save percentage at Xcel Energy Center, coach Bill Peters said.