NHL on NBCSN: Crisis-mode Wild visit Penguins
NBCSN will continue its coverage of the 2014-15 campaign when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the Minnesota Wild at the Consol Energy Center at 7:00 p.m. ET tonight. In addition to NBCSN, you can also watch the game and pre-show online.
The Minnesota Wild are baffled by their lack of success, going as far to admit that head coach Mike Yeo’s job might be on thin ice. The Pittsburgh Penguins serve as a serious challenge at a tough time, but perhaps that’s sometimes the best way to turn things around?
Yeo and Wild GM Chuck Fletcher have some roots with the Penguins organization, so there might be a wistful feeling considering Minnesota’s substantial struggles.
MORE: Jeremy Roenick says Yeo has to go
The Wild are currently on a five-game losing streak, which is their second five-game skid in a month. You can spend all day cutting up pieces of this meltdown for Minnesota; for another example, the Wild have dropped 11 of their last 13 contests.
The team seems perplexed as far as what exactly is going wrong, at least beyond the obvious problem that their goalies aren’t stopping enough pucks.
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On Pittsburgh’s end, things have been a little bumpy at times, though clearly not as dire as what Minnesota is going through. They won against the Montreal Canadiens in overtime on Saturday, but have struggled a bit recently, losing six of nine. They’re gearing up for an interesting test against the New York Islanders on Friday (not to mention another test versus the red-hot New York Rangers on Sunday).
Marc-Andre Fleury has been strong this season (21-7-4, .926 save percentage), and he’s shooting for a personal milestone tonight. NHL.com points out that Fleury has beaten every NHL team aside from the Wild and has some ugly numbers against Minnesota (0-5, .853 save percentage).
One would think that Niklas Backstrom will be in Minnesota’s net, although considering his recent work, there’s always the chance the Wild will opt for someone else (perhaps John Curry?).
Either way, there’s little doubt which team will be more desperate tonight, yet that doesn’t mean that we can expect the Penguins to roll over for the Wild. It should be a fascinating scene to take in on NBCSN, so be sure to tune in.
For all we know, we may just witness the end of Yeo’s days with the Wild.