Game Preview: Minnesota Wild vs. Anaheim Ducks 1/14/21 @ 7:00PM CST at Xcel Energy Center


Minnesota Wild (21-10-2)  44pts  4th in the Central

3.58 Goals For Per Game (3rd in the NHL)

3.03 Goals Against Per Game (19th in the NHL)

17.3% Power Play (23rd in the NHL)

79.8% Penalty Kill (17th in the NHL)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #97 Kirill Kaprizov ~ 14G 26A = 40pts

2. #38 Ryan Hartman ~ 15G 13A = 28pts

3. #36 Mats Zuccarello ~ 9G 18A = 27pts

4. #22 Kevin Fiala ~ 7G 16A = 23pts

5. #17 Marcus Foligno ~ 14G 8A = 22pts

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #17 Marcus Foligno ~ 55 PIM’s

2. #21 Brandon Duhaime ~ 44 PIM’s

3. #38 Ryan Hartman ~ 31 PIM’s

Top Goaltenders:

1. #34 Kaapo Kahkonen (6-2-1)  2.51GAA  .915%SP

2. #35 Andrew Hammond N/A




Anaheim Ducks (19-12-7)  45pts  2nd in the Pacific

2.92 Goals For Per Game (17th in the NHL)

2.74 Goals Against Per Game (11th in the NHL)

26.7% Power Play (5th in the NHL)

85.3% Penalty Kill (4th in the NHL)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #19 Troy Terry ~ 22G 14A = 36pts

2. #46 Trevor Zegras ~ 9G 18A = 27pts

3. #12 Sonny Milano ~ 9G 16A = 25pts

4. #15 Ryan Getzlaf ~ 2G 21A = 23pts

5. #22 Kevin Shattenkirk ~ 6G 14A = 20pts

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #42 Josh Manson ~ 49 PIM’s

2. #20 Nick Deslauriers ~ 47 PIM’s

3. #39 Sam Carrick ~ 31 PIM’s

Top Goaltenders:

1. #36 John Gibson (12-9-6)  2.64GAA  .917%SP  1SO

2. #41 Anthony Stolarz (6-4-1)  2.29GAA  .929%SP  2SO

3. #1 Lukas Dostal (1-0-0)  2.77GAA  .917%SP


Anaheim Ducks










Minnesota Wild











There are days in life, where simply you either lose track of the date or time. Well today, it was both for me. Between work and not feeling the greatest (brain fog is real my friends), I’ve completely lost track of both. Having the day off, I had lots of things on the docket to do, and writing a preview pretty much slipped my mind. It also doesn’t help matters that the Minnesota Wild have played so few games in the past month. And the crazy thing is, they haven’t had to postpone games due to their issues with illness and injury. It’s been all because their opponents have been dealing with injury and illness.

For a while, it seemed like Joel Eriksson Ek was going to be in tonight’s game. He was skating, looking like we were finally going to have his presence back. Unfortunately just as the dream was about to become reality, Covid struck. Alex Goligoski has also been added to the teams Covid protocol list. However, compared to some teams, our mere 2 players on the list is nothing. However the continued loss of Eriksson Ek is starting to show its detriment to the team. But here’s the crazy thing. He’s been away from the Wild for 25 days, but he’s missed three games. These are unprecedented times, because there’s no other way to explain such lopsided numbers that make no sense.

We need to look at what we’re still missing however. Losing Jonas Brodin for 6 weeks is not good. As of now, that’s a good thing, There were many who feared that it was a season-ending injury. Of course with how this season is going, who knows when the season will actually end. That being said, we should see him back in the lineup down the road. Who knows, he may have a missed days versus missed games stat like Eriksson Ek. On one hand, that would be nice, but on the other hand it just means this season gets extended. Honestly, it begs the question why we need an All-Star Weekend, when there are so many games that need to be made up.

Good news though for Wild fans. We’re getting Kirill Kaprizov back in the lineup. Anytime you lose an important element of your offense is concerning. Hopefully he finds a little bit of a mental boost in his return to action by having been named to the All-Star Team. Being on a line with Ryan Hartman and Mats Zuccarello should help maters as well. It’s a line that displays both comfort and results. Tonight, we need the results though.

However, we need to look at tonight’s opponent. Like Minnesota, they’re short two players due to Covid-19 protocol. They’re also without one of their top goaltenders, in John Gibson. While Gibson is out due to Covid, Minnesota is without Cam Talbot due to a lower body injury. Although looking at Anaheim’s injury list compared to Minnesota’s, I would say they seem to be doing just fine missing the pieces they are. In fact, they’re doing better than “just fine” as they currently sit in 2nd place in the Pacific Division.

Anaheim is not a team I look forward to on the schedule. For example, more years than not, the Anaheim Ducks have been the vastly more physical team. They’re a team that is willing to go into the corners, protect their goaltender, and skate hard. They’re a team that can be tiring to play against, both physically and mentally. Now, they’ve had a few seasons in recent years where things have been a bit more bleak, but this season seems to be one where they have a chance to push deep in the playoffs. Or at the very least, make things very difficult for their opponents.

Tonight would be a good night for Minnesota to again attempt to get back on track. The wins against both Boston and Washington certainly helped, but again they haven’t played since last Saturday. Looking at the current schedule, no more games appear to be postponed, so hopefully things are returning a bit to normal. To clarify though, I don’t think we’re out of the woods, but at the same time, I’ll be happy to be wrong.


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