7 p.m. Tuesday vs. Toronto at 3M Arena at Mariucci

TV: BSN Extra


Rachel Blount's preview

Opening bell: Though Minnesota remains in second place in the PWHL standings, it's gone 2-3 in its past five as its offense hit the skids. The team has managed to score only eight goals in its past six games, with No. 1 draft pick Taylor Heise sidelined in four of those by an upper-body injury. Sunday's 2-0 shutout loss to Boston was its second consecutive defeat. Toronto is heading in the opposite direction, rolling into the Twin Cities on a five-game win streak that includes a 4-1 victory over Minnesota on Feb. 3. Third-place Toronto trails Minnesota by only two points in the standings and could take over second place with a regulation win.

Venue change: This will be PWHL Minnesota's first home game away from Xcel Energy Center. Former Gophers on this team's roster include Lauren Bench, Abigail Boreen, Heise, Amanda Leveille, Kelly Pannek, Lee Stecklein and Grace Zumwinkle.

Watch her: Forward Natalie Spooner has been a vital part of Toronto's recent success. A prolific scorer at Ohio State and for Canada's national team, she leads the PWHL with 10 goals. Spooner has grown stronger as the season has progressed, with seven goals during Toronto's current win streak.

Forecast: A fast start is essential for Minnesota, which has won five of the six games in which it's scored first. Improved special-teams play would help, too; the team is last in the league on the power play (two goals, 5.9%) and penalty kill (seven goals allowed, 78.8%). Minnesota continues to get outstanding goaltending, allowing a PWHL-best 1.92 goals per game, and put 41 shots on net in the loss to Boston. But it has to find a way to score to beat the league's hottest team.