The Wild pulled out a 2-1 win in a shootout against the Calgary Flames Monday night to secure their first win on the road.
"Two points on the road is good," said head coach Mike Yeo. "We didn't always make it easy on ourselves but in order to win you still have to do some good things. There were some good things tonight."
Minnesota struck first late in the second period when Devin Setoguchi found Kyle Brodziak in the left slot. Brodziak was patient with the puck and out waited Flames goaltender Leland Irving for the 1-0 lead. It was Brodziak's first goal of the year.
After controlling much of the first minute of the third period, the Flames took advantage of a bad bounce off Clayton Stoner's skate creating a two-on-one break that Jiri Hudler put between the pads of Niklas Backstrom knotting the game at one.
Backstrom was once again solid stopping 23 of 24 shots in the first road win in five tries and improved his career record against Calgary to 14-9-5.
With neither team scoring the rest of the way, the Wild picked up the extra point in the shootout after Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu scored on the first two attempts. Backstrom stopped two of the three shooters for Calgary.
The Wild play the second game of a back-to-back tonight against Vancouver. The Canucks defeated with Wild 4-1 last week at Xcel Energy Center.
The Wild scored one regulation goal for the fifth straight game which is becoming a bigger problem. Backstrom saved the day but neither team generated too many quality scoring chances in the contest.
Defensively, the Wild seem to be settling in. They put together their third straight solid defensive effort. They didn't play as bad against Vancouver as the 4-1 score would indicate, and have held their last two opponents to one goal.
The top line of Koivu, Parise and rookie Charlie Coyle seem to be clicking and although shots aren't at a premium, puck possession deep in the zone seems to be improving with the top line.
Rookie Mikael Granlund continues to show flashes of dominance, but then other times seems to be dominated, losing one-on-one battles with the puck. He is a fairly obvious scout right now. Take away his space, be physical and he'll turn the puck over.
The Wild have just one goal in their last 20 power play opportunities dating back seven games.