NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, December 12th
(All times eastern)
Minnesota Wild (15-13-3) at Vancouver Canucks (17-14-0), 10 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Vancouver Canucks will aim for back-to-back wins at the
start of their longest homestand of the season when they welcome the surging
Minnesota Wild for a Northwest Division battle at General Motors Place.
The Canucks ended a two-game slide when they began an epic eight-game
homestand with Thursday's victory over the Atlanta Thrashers. All told, it was
the third win in five games for Vancouver this month.
Daniel Sedin registered his third career hat trick to lead the Canucks to the
4-2 decision over the Thrashers.
"It was fun. We played a good game tonight, the first one in awhile where we
played a full 60 minutes," Daniel Sedin said.
Mason Raymond scored the other goal for the Canucks, while Roberto Luongo made
22 saves for the win.
Henrik Sedin recorded two assists for the fifth straight game. Daniel Sedin,
twin brother of Henrik, also has a five-game point streak going and has five
goals and four assists during the run.
Vancouver has an 11-4-0 record as the host this year and will continue its
residency Monday night against Los Angeles.
The Wild, meanwhile, have won two straight and seven of their last eight
games. Head coach Todd Richards' club was in action Friday against the Flames
and earned a rare win in Calgary.
Martin Havlat's overtime winner with 1:45 left in the extra session led
Minnesota to a 2-1 win over Calgary for the Wild's first win at Pengrowth
Saddledome in over two years.
James Sheppard also scored for the Wild, who had lost seven in a row at
Calgary dating back to March 17, 2007. Niklas Backstrom stopped 22 shots to
earn the win, Minnesota's 12th in its last 18 games.
"Tonight, we kept it until the last second," Havlat said. "And I think we
played one of the best games of the season."
The Wild, who are completing a four-game road trip tonight, are just 6-10-2 as
the visiting team this year, but have won four of their last five as the
The Canucks have beaten Minnesota twice this season, giving them four straight
victories in the series. Vancouver has also taken seven of the last eight
meetings overall, while the Wild have dropped two in a row and three of their
last four in British Columbia.
12/12 11:10:18 ET