Xcel Energy Center -- Saint Paul, MN
TV: MSG Plus 2 Radio: WRHU 88.7 FM, WRCN 103.9 FM
[sny-box]The Least You Should Know About the Wild... Minnesota has outshot their opponent in 22 of their 25 games so far this season. The Wild hold an 821-633 advantage in shots over their opponents... Mikko Koivu is riding a four game point streak. During that stretch he has put up two goals and two assists for the Wild... Former Islander Nino Niederreiter leads the Wild with 11 goals -- three goals shy of his career high of 14. He is also tied for third on the Wild in points (14).[/sny-box]
The Islanders are in Minnesota tonight to take on Nino Niederreiter and the Wild.
Nino won't be the only former Islander on the Wild roster.The Isles will see Thomas Vanek for the first time since he left for Minnesota in the offseason. Vanek has 14 points (two goals, 12 assists) for the Wild so far this season.
Niederreiter has had some luck against his former club -- in two games against the Isles last season he had three points (a goal, two assists). On the Islanders side, it is a chance for Cal Clutterbuck to see his old team. He also has a goal in two games against Minnesota.
The Wild will get Ryan Suter back in the lineup. Suter has missed the previous two games due to the mumps. Charlie Coyle will also play after missing yesterday's practice with a stomach bug. Niklas Backstrom will start in net for Minnesota.
The Islanders will start Jaroslav Halak once again. Casey Cizikas will not play and has been placed on IR. Islander Head Coach Jack Capuano has moved Ryan Strome down to be the fourth line center with Cizikas and Michael Grabner will take Strome's spot on the third line. Josh Bailey will reenter the lineup and play on the second line.
Lubomir Visnovsky will also rejoin the Isles defense. He will take the place of Matt Donovan, who has played in the last five games and has two points.
"We need to see more from him," Capuano told Newsday's Arthur Staple about Donovan's play. "He needs to play so that when we're discussing the lineup, we can't take him out."