Wild gameday

9:30 p.m. at San Jose • FSN, 100.3-FM

Preview: After playing at Arizona on Friday night, the Wild flew to Silicon Valley for the second of back-to-back games. The Wild is 0-1-3 in the back end of those scenarios this season and plays in an arena in which it usually leaves demoralized. The Wild is 0-4-1 in its past five visits, 1-9-1 in 11 visits since March 5, 2009, and has won twice in 16 visits since Oct. 21, 2006. The Sharks are winless in five games (0-4-1) this month. Under the NHL’s playoff format, they sit third in the Pacific Division even though they have fewer points than Winnipeg, ninth in the West.to watch: Sharks C Joe Pavelski is tied for 20th in the NHL with 26 points. Former Wild D Brent Burns ranks second among NHL defensemen with 10 goals and third with 23 points. G Martin Jones will start. He is 1-0 with one shutout against the Wild in two games (0.60 goals-against average, .974 save percentage). If Wild G Darcy Kuemper doesn’t start for a second consecutive night, G Niklas Backstrom would start for the first time since Jan. 13.

Numbers: Before Friday’s game, the Wild was 12-2-1 when scoring first and 7-0-1 when leading after the first period and 9-0-1 when leading after the second period.

Injuries: Wild G Devan Dubnyk (groin) and C Tyler Graovac (hernia) are out. Sharks C Logan Couture (thigh) and RW Ben Smith (upper body) are out. D Marc-Edourd Vlasic (lower body) is expected back after missing three games.

 

Michael Russo