Mon, Mar 8, 2021
By Jim Vassallo (Veri.bet Writer)
The Vegas Golden Knights look for their third straight win over West Division rival Minnesota Wild in game three of their eight-game regular-season series tonight.
The Golden Knights (16-4-1, 1st Place) take on the Wild (13-8-1, 4th Place) for the third time in the last eight days when the puck drops tonight at the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota.
Both teams’ records are reflective of playing only their division opponents during the 2020-2021 season with Vegas doing a lot of damage in the West Division so far this year.
In the last meeting between these two teams, just five days ago, Vegas came away with a dominating 5-1 victory. Vegas also won the first game of the season series 5-4.
Meanwhile, Minnesota has struggled to stay out of the penalty box, averaging 9.3 penalty minutes per game, which is the eighth-most in the league.
For Minnesota to win tonight’s game, the Wild will need to be disciplined on the ice and avoid too many trips to the penalty box. The Wild will also need to solve Marc-Andry Fleury in the net. Fleury is fresh off a 4-0 shutout of the San Jose Sharks on Saturday, his fourth of the season (65th of his career), which leads the league.
Alex Tuch deposited two goals for his 11th and 12th scores of the season. Tuch is tied with Max Pacioretty for the team lead in goals. Vegas comes into tonight’s contest riding a six-game win streak.
Vegas is 8-2-0 in its last 10 games played, averaging 3.3 goals per game while allowing an average of 1.8 goals per game.
Minnesota is looking to bounce back after suffering a 5-2 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday. Minnesota led 2-0 after the first period but allowed five unanswered goals across the final two stanzas to suffer their eighth loss of the season.
Over their last 10 games, the Wild are 7-2-1, scoring an average of just under four goals per game (3.9), while allowing an average of 2.4 goals per game.
The Wild need to get hot and there’s no better time than right now against the division-leading Golden Knights. These two teams will meet again on Wednesday for the fourth game of the season series. They won’t meet again until April 1.
Ryan Hartman of the Wild is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury and Robin Lehner has been ruled out of tonight’s game for the Golden Knights with an upper-body injury.
Minnesota is hoping that the recent 5-1 loss to Vegas was an anomaly after losing by just one goal in the first meeting of the season. However, it’s safe to say that this one should be close with Fleury in the net for the Golden Knights.
The over-under is set at 5.5 goals. With Fleury coming off a dominant outing against San Jose, you should take the under in tonight’s NHL action as the Golden Knights visit the Wild in Saint Paul.