Preview: Minnesota Wild hopes to win terrain vs. Los Angeles Kings

May farce be with you.

It’s Star Wars Night at The X, as the Minnesota Wild hosts the Los Angeles Kings, and the guest team is exactly that: A farce.

Among all the teams currently in a playoff spot, only the Dallas Stars have a worse goal difference than the Kings. And among all 32 teams, the Kings have the 18th-ranked 5 percent vs. 5 percent of 49.81 percent – in the most common match state, Los Angeles does not even score the majority of the goals in the matches they are. involved in (The Wild is ranked fifth in this category). Even terrible teams like the New York Islanders and Vancouver Canucks score a larger portion of the goals by equal. Fraud!

Despite all that effort because the Kings are in the awful Pacific Division, they have been neat and snug in the playoffs for most of the season. Maybe Minnesota can help knock this strange team out of there.

On the other side of the ice tonight, Wild faces St. Louis Blues to a two-team race that just at this point is looking for home ice advantage in the first round. The fights come hot and fast, so there is no real chance for head coach Dean Evason to experiment with different line combinations; only to find new chemistry when a player is absent due to injury.

Matt Boldy is ready to return after missing the last four games due to an upper body injury. Jon Merrill and Matt Dumba will still be out, but the former is closer to coming back than the latter.

The Wild do not hold a morning skate on Sunday, so it is not certain which goalkeeper will come in between the pipes, but if they keep the tandem rotation, it will be Marc-Andre Fleury who faces the Kings at home.

In addition to the mysterious starter, it gets interesting where Evason wants to put Boldy back in his return. A very standard assumption would be to keep Kevin Fiala, Frederick Gaudreau and Boldy line together, but in Boldy’s absence, Tyson Jost has been absolutely wonderful in combination with the other two players and primarily Fiala. Could we see Jost center the two dynamic wingers? Or will Jost go back to the fourth line and kick Nick Bjugstad or Nicolas Deslauriers (who seemed to strike up against the Blues) out of the lineup? Many moving parts.

Expected lineup:

Kirill Kaprizov — Ryan Hartman — Mats Zuccarello
Matt Boldy ?? – Frederick Gaudreau ?? / Tyson Jost ?? – Kevin Fiala
Jordan Greenway — Joel Eriksson I — Marcus Foligno
Brandon Duhaime — Tyson Jost ?? / Frederick Gaudreau ?? – Nick Bjugstad ?? / Nicolas Deslauriers ??

Jake Middleton – Jared Spurgeon
Jonas Brodin – Dmitry Kulikov
Jordie Benn — Alex Goligoski

Puck drop is at. 16:00

Burning questions

Will Kirill Kaprizov break the franchise goal record in a single season?

It’s that time of season again. We are on the verge of Kaprizov breaking another record in the Minnesota Wild singles season in just his second season. There are not enough words to describe what it’s like to finally have someone among the league’s elite talents, and now the 24-year-old gets his name in the franchise record books. He already broke Marian Gaborik’s points total, but now he is only one goal away from equaling Gaborik and Eric Staal’s record of 42 goals in a season.

Can he score two to beat the record? We know there is a story of drama between these two clubs – Kaprizov scored his first NHL goal as the winner of the overtime game in his first ever game after the team came back from a multi-goal deficit – so maybe we will see a Kaprizov goal in regulation, and then one very dramatic goal in the extra frame to give him the record. We fantasybooking now.

Will the result at least be pleasant?

The two times Wild has met the Kings this season, it has been settled with just a single goal. And even though the race to earn as many points as possible is in the final round for this tight western playoff spot, it would be nice just to have some kind of comfort along with the points. Maybe a nice and solid 5-2 victory, or even something in the direction of 3-1. Just comfortable. That is, of course, if they win.

If they lose, I want it to be as uncomfortable for Kings fans as possible. Having 12 minutes of 6-on-5 hockey or some crazy shit that Big Dean-o wants to pull off.

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