Minnesota at Arizona
When: 9:00 PM
ET, Saturday, April 8, 2017
Where: Gila River Arena, Glendale, Arizona
Having already matched franchise records for wins and points, the Minnesota Wild will wind up the regular season with a visit to the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday night. Minnesota has locked up second place in the Central Division and will play either St. Louis or Nashville in the opening round of the postseason.
The Wild earned their 48th win and 104th point with a 4-3 victory at Colorado on Thursday night -- their highest total in each category since the 2006-07 season. Minnesota also notched its third straight victory following an ugly tailspin in which its dropped 13 of 17 games (4-11-2). "We're doing something right this season. We keep winning games," forward Mikael Granlund said. "But we want something more from this season." The Coyotes are riding a four-game point streak (3-0-1) following a 4-3 victory over Vancouver that allowed them to leapfrog the Canucks and escape the Pacific Division basement.
TV: 9 p.m. ET, FSN North (Minnesota), FSN Arizona-Plus
ABOUT THE WILD (48-25-8): While netminder Devan Dubnyk earned his franchise-best 40th victory, Saturday's game looms as an important test for Darcy Kuemper, who will be looking to secure the backup netminder role for the playoffs. With Kuemper and Dubnyk both struggling, Alex Stalock was summoned from the minors for a two-start audition. “(Stalock) came up and played great and it makes it a little more stressful because Darcy’s a great goalie and obviously feels he could do the job, too," Dubnyk said.
ABOUT THE COYOTES (30-41-10): Captain Shane Doan, who missed two weeks in late March and was back in the lineup Thursday after a one-game absence, could be playing his final game -- both overall and with the club. Doan, 40, has spent all 21 seasons with the franchise, is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent but has yet to decide on his future. "I'm really not thinking about it," Doan said prior to Thursday's contest. "I'm looking forward to the last few games and being able to contribute and help out."
1. Coyotes F Radim Vrbata, who reached 20 goals for the sixth time Thursday, has 15 tallies and 25 points in 44 games versus Minnesota.
2. Kuemper is 2-0-1 with a 1.00 goals-against average and .960 save percentage against the Coyotes.
3. Arizona's power play has converted on 50 percent of its chances (6-for-12) over the past five games.
PREDICTION: Coyotes 3, Wild 2
Stats and Records