Staal, Wild hang on to beat Avalanche, 3-2
By Tyler Mason
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Eric Staal put Minnesota ahead on the power play with 9:44 remaining, and Jonas Brodin had a late empty-netter as the Wild held on to beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 on Saturday night.
Staal’s goal came on the fifth power play of the night for Minnesota, which won its fifth straight. The Wild had failed to score with the man advantage until Staal’s shot from between the faceoff circles found its way past Semyon Varlamov.
Brodin’s empty-netter gave the Wild a 3-1 lead with 2:43 remaining. Colorado pulled Varlamov after going on the power play, but Minnesota won the faceoff in its own zone before Brodin fired the length of the rink to score.
Gabriel Landeskog scored in traffic for Colorado with 41.1 seconds remaining.
Mark Barberio also scored for the Avalanche, and Mikael Granlund had Minnesota’s first goal, extending his point streak to seven games.
Devan Dubnyk made 30 saves for the Wild, while Varlamov stopped 25 shots.
Staal’s goal came after a penalty on Nikita Zadorov. Granlund and Jason Zucker assisted.
Granlund’s shot at 7:15 in the second period found a bit of room between Varlamov and the pipe to even the game at 1-1, just seconds after Matt Calvert emerged from the penalty box.
Minnesota killed all six penalties, including 45 seconds of a 5-on-3 advantage for Colorado. The Avalanche entered Saturday’s game with the eighth-best power play in the league (27.5 percent). Minnesota came in having scored on 11.5 percent of its power plays, which was 27th in the league.
NOTES: Wild D Ryan Suter was honored for playing in his 1,000th career game. Suter reached the milestone Thursday against the Kings. … Avalanche C Tyson Jost sat out with a head injury. … Minnesota F Jordan Greenway had a hat trick for the Iowa Wild on Saturday in his first game since being assigned to Minnesota’s AHL affiliate a day earlier.
Avalanche: At Calgary on Thursday night.
Wild: Visit Vancouver on Monday night in the opener of a seven-game trip. Minnesota won’t play at home again until Nov. 13.