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Minnesota Wild vs Edmonton Oilers: Game 6

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Minnesota Wild (2-2-1) vs. Edmonton Oilers (2-2-0)

Rexall Place @ 8:30PM CDT

Television: FSN (HD)
Listen live on, or locally at 830 AM

For the Edmonton perspective, check out The Copper & Blue

Minnesota Wild
Edmonton Oilers

Andrew Brunette - Mikko Koivu - Antti Miettinen
Cal Clutterbuck - Matt Cullen - Martin Havlat
Guillaume Latendresse - Kyle Brodziak - Chuck Kobasew
Brad Staubitz - John Madden - Eric Nystrom

Marek Zidlicky - Greg Zanon
Nick Schultz - Brent Burns
Cam Barker - Justin Falk

Niklas Backstrom
Jose Theodore

Dustin Penner - Sam Gagne - Ales Hemsky
Taylor Hall - Shawn Horcoff - Jordan Eberle
Magnus Paajarvi - Andrew Cogliano - Gilbert Brule
Ryan Jones - Colin Fraser - Zack Stortini

Ryan Whitney - Tom Gilbert
Ladislav Smid - Kurtis Foster
Jim Vandermeer - Theo Peckham

Nikolai Khabibulin
Devan Dubnyk

In the past week, the Wild have dropped a game to the Blue Jackets, h

ad the most intense bag skate in recent memory, been hit by an illness bug, put a thumping on the Canucks, and had a fan attacked by an opposing player. If the players in Iron Range Red can't find something to latch onto emotionally, they just aren't trying.Derek Zona over at The Copper & Blue asked today if the Rypien incident could be the rallying call the team needed. While anything is better than nothing, the players have plenty of positives to rally around. Anyone of those will have longer lasting results than Rick Rypien's idiocy.

Coach Todd Richards says that "one game isn't enough," and he is right. The Wild cannot play hard one night, and then take the next game off. If they do, they will find themselves outside the playoffs for the third straight season, and Richards will find himself looking for an assistant coaching job in the AHL. They have shown flashes of brilliance, and flashes of utter incompetence. The key for the rest of the season will be to stop the up and down and find an even keel to ride out. Hopefully, that even keel is at a high level.

Tonight, the Wild enter a building they have not traditionally played well in. Niklas Backstrom and Jose Theodore both have disgusting records at Rexall Place. However, the Wild need a win. They need a winning streak, and every game cannot be played at the X. Thus begins the biggest test of this young season.

Five Questions:

  1. Can the Wild forget the ills of the past and win on the road?
  2. The Wild played an amazing game on Tuesday. Do they follow it with a good effort, or do they follow it with a soft effort?
  3. Are "The Kids" as awful as they were on the 14th back in Minnesota?
  4. Can the special teams continue to carry this team?
  5. Can Guillaume Latendresse solidify his place on the second line?
  6. BONUS: Can the Wild put together a 60 minute effort?