Preview: Flyers at Wild
The Minnesota Wild are in the thick of a tight playoff race in the Western Conference, occupying the second wild-card spot while sitting only two points behind Dallas for third place in the Central Division. Minnesota hopes to strengthen that position when it begins a four-game homestand Tuesday against the Philadelphia Flyers.
The Wild have struggled this month, losing five of its six contests following Sunday's 2-1 road setback against the New York Islanders. Mikael Granlund scored the lone goal in defeat for Minnesota, which has dropped its last two games at home (0-1-1). Philadelphia had its 10-game point streak (9-0-1) halted on Monday as it dropped a 4-1 home decision to Pittsburgh. Jakub Voracek scored a power-play goal with 4:34 remaining in the third period to avoid a shutout for the Flyers, who wrapped up a 3-1-1 homestand.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBCS Philadelphia, FS North (Minnesota)
ABOUT THE FLYERS (25-24-7): Carter Hart suffered the loss on Monday, ending his personal eight-game winning streak. The 20-year-old settled for a share of the NHL record for most consecutive victories by a goaltender before his 21st birthday, which was set from March 6-26, 1995 by Quebec's Jocelyn Thibault. Voracek has landed on the scoresheet in 11 of his last 12 contests and is riding a seven-game point streak during which he has recorded three goals and six assists.
ABOUT THE WILD (27-24-5): Granlund's goal on Sunday was his first since Jan. 7, ending his 14-game drought. The 26-year-old Finn ranks second on the team with 45 points and has notched a club-leading 16 of them on the power play. Zach Parise is three points ahead of Granlund and has registered one in seven of his last nine contests.
1. Wild D Jared Spurgeon is one goal away from matching the career high of 11 he set in 2015-16.
2. Philadelphia C Sean Couturier was kept off the scoresheet Monday for just the second time in 14 contests, ending his four-game goal-scoring streak and six-game point run.
3. Minnesota LW Jason Zucker recorded a point in four of his last five games, but has scored just one goal over his last 11 contests.
PREDICTION: Wild 3, Flyers 0