The Florida Panthers paid a visit to the Xcel Energy Center Thursday, looking for their fifth victory in 17 games against the Wild. They were also looking to extend their point streak to five games. Unfortunately, neither of those things happened, as the Wild featured Devan Dubnyk in net. Dubnyk turned aside 26-of-27 shots in the eventual 2-1 Wild victory.
Minnesota opened scoring just four minutes into the first when Mikko Koivu slid a perfect pass onto Jason Pominville's stick for an easy tap in on Roberto Luongo. Ryan Suter was credited for the second assist on the goal, Pominville's 12th of the campaign.
In the second period, the Wild extended their lead to two at the seven minute mark. Zach Parise (22) poked a Thomas Vanek pass past Luongo with the man advantage for a 2-0 lead which would hold up for all of three minutes. Nick Bjugstad got one back halfway through the period on a nearly impossible angle shot for his team-leading 19th marker of the season. Jussi Jokinen and Jimmy Hayes each earned assists on the play, but it was all Bjugs here:
The Panthers were unable to close the gap through the second half of the period, and all of the third period for that matter.
Join us tomorrow night for the conclusion of this short road-trip with a showdown in Dallas against the last (other) team to call Minnesota home.