Minnesota Wild @ Tampa Bay Lightning Game Thread

Jonas Brodin and the Minnesota Wild play another team that wears blue. - Abelimages

The Wild take on the Lightning and it should be pretty good, right?


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Tampa Bay Times Forum @ 6:30 P.M.


Radio: KFAN 100.3; Wild.com

The Wild head to Tampa Bay tonight to face-off against the Lightning. The Lightning have gotten out to a decent 4-2 start, better than the Wild's anyway.

Tonight's major news is that Nicklas Backstrom will be returning to the team, though he'll be Josh Harding's backup. Expect him to make a start in the near future, as Harding has had a pretty significant workload since Backstrom went down. Also news for tonight's lineup: Nate Prosser and Keith Ballard won't be playing, which means that Marco Scandella and Mathew Dumba will be playing tonight.

On the Tampa Bay side, Martin St. Louis is a game-time decision with a mysterious lower-body injury. Brett Connolly skated with Steven Stamkos and Ryan Malone in practice today, and if he plays instead of St. Louis, it'll be interesting to watch, as he's a top prospect with loads of offensive talent.

Here are tonight's lineups, maybe.

Minnesota Wild
Tampa Bay Lightning

Zach Parise Mikko Koivu Nino Niederreiter
Dany HeatleyMikael Granlund Jason Pominville
Matt CookeKyle BrodziakJustin Fontaine
Stephane Veilleux Zenon Konopka - Torrey Mitchell

Ryan SuterJonas Brodin
Clayton Stoner Jared Spurgeon
Marco Scandella - Mathew Dumba

Josh Harding - Niklas Backstrom

Ryan Malone - Steven Stamkos - Martin St. Louis/Brett Connolly
Alex Kilorn - Valtteri Filppula - Richard Panik
Ondrej Palat - Tyler Johnson - Teddy Purcell
Pierre-Cedric Labrie - Nate Thompson - B.J. Combreen

Matt Carle - Radko Gudas
Sami Salo - Victor Hedman
Andrej Sustr - Eric Brewer

Ben Bishop - Anders Lindback

Five Questions:

1. We've seen the shots coming. When will the gorram goals come?

2. With or without Marty St. Louis, Steven Stamkos makes the Lightning power play incredibly dangerous. Will the struggling Wild penalty kill be able to slow them down?

3. Will Dany Heatley get out of the doghouse tonight?

4. Can Josh Harding keep up his stellar play?

5. Can Mathew Dumba do enough to make this not be his last NHL game?

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