LOS ANGELES – None of the Wild’s previous road trips have finished with a winning record, but the team has a chance at that Tuesday when it closes out a four-game, Western Conference swing through the Pacific Division at Staples Center against the Kings.
So far, the team is 2-1 on the trip.
“We certainly would like to do it,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. “I think it’s our turn.”
The formula for success so far has been rally mode.
In its first victory, the Wild overcame a two-goal hole to shrug off the Ducks 4-2. Most recently, the team twice erased a two-goal deficit to take down the Coyotes 4-3 on Saturday.
“They’re not quitters,” Boudreau said. “… Sometimes it gets away from us, as it did in the Dallas game and maybe the first game in Nashville. But it’s a group that’s going to fight to the end, which is great.”
Winger Luke Kunin is ready to return after missing Saturday’s game with food poisoning, but the Wild won’t get winger Marcus Foligno back in the lineup. He remains out with a lower-body injury.
This trip so far has been winger Kevin Fiala’s most productive stretch of the season.
He has four points over the past three games, a span in which he’s scored twice. Against Arizona, Fiala had a goal and an assist.
“I still think there’s a lot more in that body of work that can be done,” Boudreau said. “But so far he’s doing OK.”
Jason Zucker-Eric Staal-Mats Zuccarello
Zach Parise-Mikko Koivu-Kevin Fiala
Jordan Greenway-Joel Eriksson Ek-Luke Kunin
Ryan Donato-Victor Rask-Ryan Hartman
Ryan Suter-Jared Spurgeon
Jonas Brodin-Matt Dumba
Carson Soucy-Brad Hunt
9-1-4: Record for the Wild in its last 14 matchups vs. the Kings.
13: Goals for the Wild in its previous three games on this trip.
18:34: Ice time for winger Mats Zuccarello Saturday, a season-high.
7: Points for winger Jason Zucker in his last seven games.
.926: Career save percentage for goalie Devan Dubnyk in 17 career games against Los Angeles.
About the Kings:
Los Angeles hasn’t improved much since it suffered a 5-1 loss to the Wild on Oct.26. In six ensuing games, the Kings have won just once – a 4-3 overtime decision vs. the Blackhawks on Nov.2. This will be the Kings’ first home game since a three-game Eastern Canada road trip in which the team went 0-2-1. Three of the Kings’ last four games have been decided by one goal. Their 35.6 shots per game average is the most in the NHL.