The Minnesota Wild is in Montreal Tuesday evening and, simply put, they are on a roll. One big reason for that is Jason Pominville.
Yes, the Wild are off to a great 10-4 start. But another story that continues to develop is how well Josh Harding has been standing out in goal for Minnesota, as he tries to put his multiple sclerosis on the back burner.
Jason Pominville scored a goal in regulation and the game-winner in the shootout to lift the Minnesota Wild over the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 on Saturday night. Justin Fontaine got the tying goal midway through the second period and Josh Harding made 27 saves for Minnesota, which won for the seventh time in nine games. Jiri Tlusty and Ryan Murphy scored for the Hurricanes, who had won two straight. Justin Peters stopped 28 shots. Carolina was 0 for 3 on the power play, while Minnesota finished 0 of 4.
Minnesota Wild right wing Jason Pominville has been honored by the NHL for his productive recent performance. Pominville was picked Monday for the league’s “First Star” award. He had four goals and two assists over Minnesota’s last three games.
Last April the Minnesota Wild made a bold move at the NHL trade deadline as they sent goaltender Matt Hackett, forward Johan Larsson and a pair of draft picks to Buffalo for forward Jason Pominville.
Patrick Sharp finally scored, Nick Leddy jump-started Chicago’s stagnant special teams with a power-play goal and the Blackhawks beat the Minnesota Wild 5-1 on Monday night. Corey Crawford made 29 saves, and Sheldon Brookbank, Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad all scored to give the Blackhawks just their third game of more than three goals in 12 contests this season. After giving up 11 goals while losing their previous two games, the Blackhawks played tougher defense, were more disciplined and paid the Wild back for their 5-3 win Saturday in Chicago.
Niklas Backstrom made 33 saves in his first win of the season and the Minnesota Wild defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 5-3 on Saturday night in a rematch of their first-round playoff series. Jason Pominville had two goals in his 600th career game as Minnesota earned its third consecutive win. Zach Parise, Kyle Brodziak and Justin Fontaine also scored for the Wild, and Ryan Suter and Mikael Granlund had two assists apiece. Bryan Bickell scored for the fourth consecutive game for the Blackhawks, who had recorded at least one point in each of their past seven games. Patrick Kane added his team-best sixth goal in the third period.
The Minnesota Wild have recalled goalie Johan Gustafsson from the AHL, after a lower-body injury that forced Josh Harding out of the last game after two periods. Gustafsson was 2-0 with a 1.99 goals against average in three games this season for the Iowa Wild. The sixth-round pick in the 2010 draft played in his native Sweden last season and has not appeared in an NHL game. He’ll be the backup to Niklas Backstrom when the Wild play at Chicago Saturday. Coach Mike Yeo said after practice Friday that Harding was feeling better but won’t travel to the game.
Josh Harding stopped 16 shots for his first shutout of the season and the Minnesota Wild beat the Nashville Predators 2-0 Tuesday night. Justin Fontaine scored late in the second period and Jason Pominville added an empty-net tally for the Wild, who have scored just seven goals in the past five games.
Brad Boyes and Jonathan Huberdeau scored in a shootout, lifting the Florida Panthers over the Minnesota Wild 2-1 on Saturday night to snap a three-game losing streak. Boyes’ backhander went through the legs of goalie Josh Harding for the winner. Huberdeau beat Harding on the stick side for the first shootout goal. Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu were turned aside by Panthers goalie Tim Thomas in the shootout. Aleksander Barkov scored in regulation for Florida, and Thomas made 31 saves.
Steven Stamkos scored a tiebreaking goal with 5:04 left in the third period and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Minnesota Wild 3-1 on Thursday night. Stamkos gave the Lightning a 2-1 lead when he skated in from the right wing boards and lifted an in-close shot over goalie Josh Harding during a 4 on 4. Sami Salo added an empty-net goal in the final minute.
Jason Pominville received a warm welcome in his return to Buffalo and left his former team still searching for its first win of the season. Pominville, a former Sabres captain, scored the winning goal in the Minnesota Wild’s 2-1 victory over the winless Sabres on Monday night. “It tops off a pretty emotional day in a great way,” said Pominville, who played his first game in Buffalo since he was traded to Minnesota last April for center Johan Larsson, Rochester goalie Matt Hackett, a first-round pick that was used on defenseman Nikita Zadorov and a second-round selection. “So many good memories in this building. It’s nice to get another one.”
October 5, 1993 was the first time the franchise formerly known as the Minnesota North Stars would play a home game somewhere other than Bloomington, Minn. That night, the Stars beat the Detroit Red Wings 6-4 in Reunion Arena in Dallas, Texas – officially, and for the foreseeable future, to be known as the “Dallas Stars.” Though Minnesota hockey fans would count on the promise of a future franchise from the NHL, they had to wait seven long years to get it.
Rookies Justin Fontaine and Mathew Dumba both scored their first NHL goals and Josh Harding made 18 saves for his second straight win as the Minnesota Wild beat the Dallas Stars 5-1 on Saturday night. Minnesota came in giving up a league-low 22.0 shots per game, and kept the pressure off Harding, who was filling in for injured starter Niklas Backstrom. Two nights after stopping 14 of 15 shots in a 2-1 win over Winnipeg, Harding faced only 19 shots as the Wild controlled play from the opening faceoff. Dallas also was playing with its backup goalie as starter Kari Lehtonen was injured in a 4-1 win at Winnipeg on Friday. His replacement, Dan Ellis, struggled with Minnesota’s offensive barrage, allowing five goals on 36 shots.
Minnesota Wild center Charlie Coyle will miss three to four weeks with a sprained knee. The Wild announced the timetable for Coyle’s recovery on Sunday night. The second-year player was hurt Saturday night in the team’s overtime loss to Anaheim. Left wing Jason Zucker was recalled from Iowa of the AHL to take Coyle’s place. Zucker played in 20 games last season. Both Coyle and Zucker are 21, part of the Wild’s promising young core. Coyle was centering the second line, between Dany Heatley and Nino Niederreiter.