The New York Islanders, the only team in the NHL that has beaten the Wild by more than a goal this season, faces off tonight against in Minnesota in the final of two meetings.
On the line, the Wild's 11-game overall winning streak and seven-game home winning streak. The former is a franchise record, the latter is one short of tying the franchise record of eight straight home wins (has happened twice in 2006-07).
If the Wild beats the Islanders for its 12th win in a row and the Columbus Blue Jackets win in Winnipeg for its 14th in a row, on New Year's Eve, the Wild and Blue Jackets will be the first teams in NHL history to meet with simultaneous streaks of at least seven consecutive wins.
This is according to Elias Sports Bureau's Bob Waterman.
If the Wild wins tonight and the Blackhawks lose to Nashville, the Wild overtakes them for first in the Central Division with three games in hand.
Speaking of which, please read my feature on Eric Staal and how this proven veteran has helped raise the bar inside the Wild locker room
If the Wild wins tonight, it'll be the second-longest winning streak in Bruce Boudreau's NHL coaching career. He has coached four double-digit streaks in his career.
Why? "Lucky," he says.
The Wild is 11-0-1 since losing in Vancouver in regulation on Nov. 29 and 13-1-3 since Nov. 19.
For the Wild, Devan Dubnyk carries his career-best and franchise-record nine-game winning streak and career-best 13-game point streak (11-0-2, 1.58 GAA, .945 SV%) into tonight's game. He has no regulation losses since Nov. 19.
Dubnyk, 30, leads the league with a 1.58 GAA, .947 SV% and five shutouts. He is tied for third with 18 wins. He has allowed two goals or less in 10 straight games and has not allowed more than three goals this season.
Same Wild lineup as Nashville, meaning Kurtis Gabriel and Nate Prosser are scratched. I don't know the lines, but I'd assume they'll be the same lines to start the game as the Nashville game began (meaning Jason Pominville with Eric Staal and Zach Parise and Jordan Schroeder with Chris Stewart and Tyler Graovac).
But I don't know for sure.
Jaroslav Halak starts for the Isles.
During the 11-game winning streak, the Wild has killed 30 of 32 power plays (93.8 percent), outscored its opponents 40-18 (excludes the goal awarded for winning shootout), has scored four or more goals five times, allowed two or less 10 times and has posted a 1.61 goals-against average and .945 save percentage.
Staal's eight-game point streak is on the line tonight. Zach Parise usually lights up the team that didn't take him in the 2003 draft for fun. And I'll look back at the Nino Niederreiter-Cal Clutterbuck trade as my game notebook for tomorrow.
I'll be on KFAN at 2 p.m. and please take a listen to the latest Russo-Souhan Show on the Wild's hot streak.