Tonight the Wild take on the Oilers at the Xcel. The Wild win this game, they're in the playoffs for the first time since 2005. So, not only could the team be playoff bound, but we could clinch on everyone's least favorite team. Oh, the sweet sound of being a fan of a team not run by questionable intelligence.
Courtesy of the Wild PR department, the Wild have some pretty impressive stats against the Oilers. The Wild have gone 19-1-0 in their last 20 games against the Oilers (at the X). Backstrom is 17-0-0 against the Oilers at the Xcel. The Wild have outscored the Oilers 69-32 in those last 20 games at home by the way.
The Oilers are well on their way to complete the season with a complete tank. They've won a single game in their last 10, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is out for the season with a shoulder injury. But we have to be honest folks, the Oilers offense is ridiculously talented. This isn't a "sure win" game.
The Wild's blue line, led by Ryan Suter and Jonas Brodin, looked pretty awesome against LA. Hopefully they continue to perform at a high level because they Wild need everyone dialed in and playing their game tonight.
Speaking of the blue line saviors, make sure you keep an eye on Suter and Brodin if you are at the game tonight. Tuesday I noticed a strange thing when watching these two; they seemed to be attempting to partake in the sport of synchronized hockey defending.
Both players push off the same leg when they start to back skate, while taking almost the exact same length strides on the same legs. Their arm movements match up as well. Even when they leave their respective lines, the movements are so clean precise that it's almost like watching two people dance some sort of beautiful song.
I will try and take some video tonight and post it online to show you more of what I am talking about. But honestly, watch for it!
Jason Pominville will not be playing tonight, and Mike Rupp will be back in. Torrey Mitchell will be placed in Pominville's slot on the 3rd line, with Rupp playing on the 4th with Zenon Konopka and Jake Dowell.
That's all we've got for now, see you back here for puck drop, and don't forget to show the Aeros some love with their first Calder Cup playoff game of the season tonight.