Down 2-0 through two periods, the Minnesota Wild launched a furious comeback in the third period to record a 4-2 win over the visiting Winnipeg Jets on Friday.
Eric Staal was in position in front of Winnipeg’s net to bank in a rebound at 17:29 of the third period to put Minnesota ahead for good.
The Wild outshot the Jets by a 23-22 margin in the first two periods, but were hampered by five scoreless power-play chances. In five-on-five play, however, Minnesota kept up the pressure, outshooting Winnipeg by a 16-6 margin in the final period to break down the Jets’ defense with four unanswered goals.
Nino Niederreiter initiated the comeback with a goal at 3:06 of the third period, and he then earned an assist on Eric Fehr’s equalizer at the 11:47 mark. From behind the net, Neiderreiter bounced the puck in front to Fehr, who got a stick on it for his fourth goal of the season.
Matt Dumba also had a two-point night for the Wild, with assists on the goals from Fehr and Staal. Dumba now has five goals and four assists over a six-game point streak, and he continues to lead all NHL defensemen with 10 goals this season.
Zach Parise scored an empty-net goal at the 18:51 mark, for his 10th goal of the season and sixth in Minnesota’s last nine games.
Patrik Laine opening the scoring at 16:50 of the first period. Laine now has a team-leading 14 goals for the Jets, with six of those scores coming in his last three games.
With just over a minute left in the second period, Nikolaj Ehlers extended Winnipeg’s lead on a power-play goal, firing a shot from the circle that snuck through Alex Stalock’s pads.
Stalock saved 26 of 28 shots to record his fifth win of the season. Stalock received the start since regular Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk was unavailable due to illness.
The two division rivals met for the first time since the Jets eliminated the Wild in the first round of last season’s Stanley Cup playoffs. Counting that five-game postseason series, the Wild had lost eight of their previous 10 meetings against Winnipeg.
—Field Level Media