ST. LOUIS – What happens on the out-of-town scoreboard will loom large over the action between the Wild and Blues Wednesday night at Enterprise Center, as the Wild could find out its first-round playoff opponent after the evening's slate of games.
Vegas is taking on San Jose and can clinch the No.1 seed in the West Division if its point total from the night exceeds what Colorado earns against Los Angeles. And the Avalanche can claim the top spot with a win in any fashion and a Golden Knights regulation loss.
"Everyone knows that our situation here in the West is still up for grabs and obviously we want to get that sorted out as best we can," defenseman Ian Cole said. "But primarily we want to play well tonight. We want to go into the playoffs playing well. Yeah, we want to win this hockey game against St. Louis. They've been a tough opponent for us. We need to continue to get better and grow as a team and refine our game.
"Even the last two games here, I don't think anyone should be resting or taking their foot off the gas. If we can refine our game and get better these next two games, we should 100 percent do that. We concentrate on winning and playing well tonight. We have no bearing on how Colorado plays or how Vegas plays. We'll worry about ourselves, and we'll check the scoreboard after I think."
Home-ice advantage for the Wild in Round 1 is also not out of the question.
If the Wild wins its last two games against the Blues and Colorado drops its final back-to-back vs. the Kings, the Wild could move from third to second.
The Wild will roll out its usual lineup Wednesday, and goalie Cam Talbot will be in net.
"Guys are doing their thing to get ready to play the game," coach Dean Evason said. "Nothing different here this morning."
Jordan Greenway-Joel Eriksson Ek-Marcus Foligno
Kirill Kaprizov- Ryan Hartman-Mats Zuccarello
Kevin Fiala-Victor Rask-Marcus Johansson
Nick Bonino-Nico Sturm-Nick Bjugstad
Ryan Suter-Jared Spurgeon
Jonas Brodin-Matt Dumba
Carson Soucy-Ian Cole
10: Points for rookie Kirill Kaprizov during a career-high six-game point streak.
5-0-2: Run for Talbot over his past seven road games.
8: Points for winger Kevin Fiala over his last five games.
6-4: Record for the Wild this season in the first game of a back-to-back.
0-1-1: Showing by the Wild in St. Louis this season.
About the Blues:
St. Louis locked up the last playoff spot in the West Division last week, the third straight season the Blues have advanced. The team is coming off a 2-1 overtime win at Los Angeles on Monday, just the Blues' second victory in their past six games. Captain Ryan O'Reilly has 13 points over his past 10 games. In his last 14 games, winger Mike Hoffman has recorded eight goals and four assists. The Blues are 3-1-1 in their last five home games.