On the heels of its sixth straight win on Monday against the Vancouver Canucks, Minnesota now turns its attention to the Winnipeg Jets. Despite adding to its season best win-streak, Minnesota lost Jason Zucker & Ryan Carter to injury reserve. Mike Yeo said he does not expect them to be back in the near future. Zucker has paced the Wild with 18 goals this season and Ryan Carter has been phenomenal after being claimed on waivers just before the season started. With the two injured, Brett Sutter & Stu Bickel have been recalled. Justin Fontaine was also activated from IR last night too. It has not been announced how the lines will shape out and we may not know closer to game-time anyway. My best guess says Fontaine is a lock to dress tonight and either Bickel or Sutter will play on the 4th line with the other being scratched.
We also wont know who will start in net for Minnesota. Currently the Wild have three goaltenders on the roster and Yeo has proclaimed he wants to ride Devan Dubnyk's string of success for as long as possible, but you also dont want to burn him out. Doobie (lol) was named the first star of the week, his 2nd such award since the Wild acquired him. I'd say Darcy Kuemper gets the nod tonight. He at least has played in the last two weeks and has had (minor) success against Winnipeg. We can tell you that Michael Hutchinson will start for Winnipeg tonight. Hutchinson is 1-2-1 with a 2.18 GAA and a .910 SV% in four games (three starts) against Minnesota.
Winnipeg snapped a six-game losing streak on Sunday against Colorado and are six points ahead of the Wild for the first wildcard spot, but Minnesota is just three points away from the second wildcard spot which is occupied by Vancouver. The Wild has points in nine of its last 10 games (8-1-1) and is 4-0-1 in its last five games away from Saint Paul.