Columbus (8-7-2) at Minnesota (9-4-1) 8:00 p.m. EST
ST. PAUL, Minnesota (Ticker) — The Minnesota Wild have
struggled to find consistency over their last six games. They
hope a return home will solve that problem.
The Wild look to earn back-to-back wins for the first time in
November when they host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday.
Minnesota has alternated wins and losses over its last six games
and is coming off a 4-0 blanking of the Phoenix Coyotes on
Thursday – five days after enduring a shutout of its own against
the Vancouver Canucks.
Nicklas Backstrom stopped the 24 shots he faced against the
Coyotes, improving to 4-0-1 with a 2.00 goals-against average at
Xcel Energy Center, where the Wild are 4-1-1.
Minnesota should continue its impressive play at home against
the Blue Jackets, who are 1-8-1 in their last 10 road games
against the Wild.
However, Columbus has won four of its last five, including a 6-1
victory against the Buffalo Sabres on Friday. R.J. Umberger
scored twice and rookie Derick Brassard extended his
goal-scoring streak to three games, supporting goalie Pascal
Leclaire in his return to the crease.
Leclaire made 36 saves in his first appearance since October 25
due to a sprained ankle. With the win, the 26-year-old
netminder improved to 4-3-0 with a 3.08 GAA.