Breaking Tampa Bay, Florida and national news and weather from Tampa Bay Online and The Tampa Tribune | TBO.com
  • Home
National Hockey League

Wild try to stay hot in home test vs. Leafs

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Minnesota Wild hope to continue their excellent play of late when they welcome the Toronto Maple Leafs for Wednesday's battle at Xcel Energy Center.

The Wild enter Wednesday's action with wins in seven of their past nine games and the club has suffered just one regulation loss in its past 10 trips to the ice, going 7-1-2 during that stretch.

Minnesota's last two games went to the shootout round and the Wild split those outings, losing Thursday's 3-2 decision at Washington before beating Carolina by the same score on Saturday.

Jason Pominville netted his 200th career goal and scored in the shootout to help the Wild edge the Hurricanes at PNC Arena.

Neither team could break a 2-2 tie in overtime, but all three Minnesota shooters scored in the shootout. Zach Parise led off going in with a leg kick, moving from backhand to forehand to easily beat Justin Peters. After Riley Nash rang a shot off the post for Carolina, Mikko Koivu quickly lifted a backhand shot into the net. Chris Terry kept Carolina in it with a backhander over Josh Harding. However, Pominville then faked Peters and slipped the puck through the five hole to give Minnesota the extra point.

The Wild had been 0-3 in shootouts this season prior to Saturday's road victory over the 'Canes.

Justin Fontaine lit the lamp for Minnesota's other goal during regulation. Harding stopped 27-of-29 shots to improve his season record to 9-2-2.

"We were bound to win in a shootout one of these times. We had the guys going. The ice wasn't the best in the third, but we have to have a better third. The end result is what we needed," said Fontaine on the shootout win.

The Wild open a three-game homestand tonight against the Maple Leafs, who have won the last three meetings in this series. Toronto and Minnesota have split the four all-time encounters in St. Paul.

After ending October on a three-game winning streak, the Leafs have dropped two of three to begin the new month. Toronto last played on Saturday when it lost a 3-1 decision in Boston to begin a three-game road trip.

Patrice Bergeron tallied a pair of goals in the third period to help down the Maple Leafs, who played in Boston for the first time since dropping a heartbreaking overtime decision in Game 7 of the clubs' first-round playoff series last season.

Joffrey Lupul scored for the Maple Leafs, while James Reimer made 31 saves in defeat.

"It's disappointing, but there are some positive we can take out of this," Lupul said of the loss.

Toronto, which will complete its trip Friday in Buffalo, fell to 5-4-0 as the road team after Saturday's setback in Boston.

11/13 14:13:03 ET

Part of the Tribune family of products

© 2013 TAMPA MEDIA GROUP, LLC