By Wild Road Tripper
Remember the last Minnesota Wild five-game road trip? Remember how bad that trip started out, and how bad it finished??
Those days were banished, possibly for good tonight in Nashville, where the Wild spotted the Nashville Predators the first goal, then came roaring back by scoring the next five straight, en route to a 5-3 Wild victory, their fifth in a row, at Sommet Center in front of 13,145 mostly stunned patrons. The victory marked the third straight game in which the Wild scored five goals, a team record.
Ten different Wild players tallied points in the game, led by Andrew Brunette's goal and assist, and Martin Havlat's two assists. Even the enforcer got in on the act, as Derek Boogaard assisted on Andrew Ebbett's first period goal, a goal which tied the game at one all late in the first period. James Sheppard scored his first goal since last March 28th, and Antti Miettinen extended his goal scoring run to six in 6 games as the contest became the domain of the Wild. The victory was the second of the season for Josh Harding, who made 26 saves. It is the Wild's fifth straight win, their longest winning streak since October of 2007; the Wild now have 29 points, good for 13th place in the Western Conference, one point ahead of Edmonton, who also won on Saturday.
Dan Ellis started in goal for Nashville, but was replaced by Pekka Rinne for the third period, as the Wild outshot the Preds 39-29. Nashville, with the loss, now is tied for 7th place with Dallas, a 3-2 shootout loser to Edmonton on Saturday. The Preds also wore their newly-released third jerseys for the second time at home tonight. They are 0-2 in the new duds.
The Wild may be able to enjoy the victory for a while tonight, as they travel to the Valley of the Sun for the Next Game: vs. Phoenix, Monday, Dec. 7, 8:00 PM Central (7:00 PM Mountain) Time, Jobing.com Arena. Wild TV: FSNorth (includes FSWisconsin); Coyotes TV: FSArizona (both feeds in HD); XM Radio: Ch. 238)