Cincinnati.com
National Hockey League
Preview
Calgary at Minnesota
When: 8:00 PM ET, Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Where: Xcel Energy Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota

After navigating the rugged three-game California road trip by posting a pair of dramatic victories, the Minnesota Wild will kick off a three-game homestand against the Calgary Flames on Tuesday night. The Wild have won four of five overall and capped the West Coast trek by registering overtime wins over the Anaheim Ducks and San Jose Sharks.

Minnesota squandered a three-goal lead at San Jose but came away with the victory on Nino Niederreiter's unassisted tally in the extra session. "We definitely played some really good hockey out here in California," Niederreiter said. "We just gotta make sure we bring that momentum with us, bring that confidence with us and take it game by game." The Flames have won two straight following a stretch of six losses in eight games (2-4-2) and have been much better on the road (8-4-2) than at Scotiabank Saddledome (8-8-0). One of those home losses was a 4-2 setback to the Wild on Oct. 21, which ended Calgary's four-game winning streak in the series.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, Sportsnet West (Calgary), FSN North-Plus (Minnesota)

ABOUT THE FLAMES (16-12-2): Admitting there was "no excuse not to be moving" after returning from a one-game suspension, Matthew Tkachuk scored twice in a three-goal third period against Vancouver to end an 11-game goal drought. Tkachuk's tallies sandwiched a goal by Sam Bennett, the No. 4 overall draft pick in 2014 who had notched three goals and five assists over the past seven games. "His game was trending in the right direction and now he's getting results," Flames coach Glen Gulutzan said of Bennett.

ABOUT THE WILD (15-11-3): After failing to register a point in three straight games for the first time this season, veteran forward Eric Staal scored a pair of goals and set up another to boost his team-leading total to 26 points. "We need our big players to be big or we're not going to succeed," Minnesota coach Bruce Boudreau said. "He played really good, could have had a couple more, I think." Defenseman Ryan Murphy collected his first points in his sixth game of the season with a goal and an assist in San Jose.

OVERTIME

1. Flames G Mike Smith, who appeared in his 500th game Saturday, is 4-11-1 lifetime against Minnesota.

2. Wild G Devan Dubnyk is 11-7-4 with a 2.26 goals-against average versus the Flames.

3. Calgary is 2-for-22 on the power play over the past seven games.

PREDICTION: Wild 4, Flames 3
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div
Calgary 16-12-1-1 W2 8-8-0-0 8-4-1-1 1-0-0-0 15-12-1-1 5-3-0-0
Minnesota 15-11-2-1 W2 8-3-2-0 7-8-0-1 2-0-0-0 13-11-2-1 4-5-0-0
Last Meeting
Calgary Minnesota
Date Away Home Shots Saves PP Shots Saves PP
10/21/17 MIN 4 CAL 2 37 28 1-6 32 35 1-3
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Total Points Player  
Calgary T. Brodie 2
Minnesota R. Suter 3
Goals Player  
Calgary S. Monahan 1
Minnesota J. Spurgeon 1
Assists Player  
Calgary T. Brodie 2
Minnesota L. Kunin 2
Saves Player  
Calgary M. Smith 28
Minnesota A. Stalock 35
Season
Total Points Player  
Calgary J. Gaudreau 42
Minnesota E. Staal 30
Goals Player  
Calgary S. Monahan 20
Minnesota J. Zucker 15
Assists Player  
Calgary J. Gaudreau 28
Minnesota E. Staal 16
Saves Player  
Calgary M. Smith 837
Minnesota D. Dubnyk 685
Quickchart Matchup
Calgary Off vs  Minnesota Def
2.87 GF
2.97 GA
33.3 Shots
32.2 Shots
20 PP
20 PK
Minnesota Off vs  Calgary Def
2.97 GF
3.1 GA
28.8 Shots
32.1 Shots
19 PP
23 PK