Dumba leads Wild past Stars 5-2
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Matt Dumba scored on a power play and had two assists in Minnesota’s three-goal second period, and the Wild moved a step closer to a spot in the playoffs with a 5-2 victory over the fading Dallas Stars on Thursday night.
Mikael Granlund sparked the Wild with a short-handed goal in the first period, set up by the first of two assists by Ryan Suter. Zach Parise scored 59 seconds after Dumba and tacked on an empty-netter in the waning seconds, and Jason Zucker had a power-play goal with 11 seconds left before the second intermission to give the Wild a bigger cushion at the break.
Jamie Benn and Devin Shore scored for the Stars, who have lost eight straight road games, including six in regulation. They’re just 1-7-2 in their past 10 games overall, staggering into position for the knockout punch to their postseason hope. They host a rematch with the Wild on Saturday night.
With only four games remaining, the Stars are 5 points behind current wild-card spot holders St. Louis and Anaheim in the Western Conference standings. The Blues have six games left, and the Ducks play five more times. The Stars also trail ninth-place Colorado by 4 points, with five games to go for the Avalanche.
Devan Dubnyk stopped 29 shots for the Wild, who improved to 26-6-8 at home for the second-most points in the NHL. With five games to go, they’re up 6 points on the Avalanche in the race to clinch an appearance in the playoffs for the sixth straight year.
Dumba, who set a career high with his 12th goal, and Zucker gave the Wild’s power play a badly needed boost. They had only one goal in their previous 26 opportunities until the sizzling second period.