Wild erase 2-goal deficit to defeat Jets 3-2
WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) Darcy Kuemper thinks the Minnesota Wild are finally back on the right track.
Kuemper made 28 saves after missing a game with food poisoning and Marco Scandella scored the tiebreaking goal with 12 seconds left in the second period as the Minnesota Wild rallied from two down to beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 on Monday night.
Scandella's ninth of the season was Minnesota's third goal in the second period and helped the Wild snap a five-game winless skid.
''We've had quite a bit of bad luck with illness and injuries,'' Kuemper said. ''It's been a tough road. We're trending in the right direction. It was nice to get rewarded tonight. We really picked up our game in the second half and it showed with a big win.''
Kuemper made a couple of big saves late in the game to preserve the win.
''That's what we need from him,'' Wild head coach Mike Yeo said. ''If we get that kind of goaltending on a consistent basis, we're going to be a dangerous team.''
Ryan Carter and Justin Fontaine had the other goals for Minnesota (17-13-4). Sutter and Kyle Brodziak each had assists on the goals.
It was Winnipeg's (19-11-7) first loss in regulation in its past six games (4-1-1).
Michael Frolik and Mathieu Perreault both scored on the power play for the Jets.
Michael Hutchinson started his third straight game for Winnipeg and stopped 28 shots.
Winnipeg didn't get its first shot on goal until 7 1/2 minutes into the game. The Wild had seven at that point.
Frolik scored his eighth goal of the season unassisted at 16:00 with a shot that went off Kuemper and into a top corner.
''We feel comfortable to play with the lead, but after the second period we said we are one goal short. We want to feel comfortable in those situations, too, so we just want to go there and have a push,'' Frolik said.
''We got a couple chances there, but (the puck) didn't go in. We just have to kind of learn from it and forget this one and go for the next one.''
The Jets carried their third power play of the game into the second and Perreault scored his ninth of the season at the 20-second mark to make it 2-0.
Blake Wheeler sent a quick pass across the front of the net and Perreault shot the puck over Kuemper's left pad. Bryan Little also assisted on the goal, extending his point streak to four games with two goals and three assists.
Carter made it 2-1 with a close, high shot over Hutchinson at 4:12, while Fontaine evened the score at 16:31 when he went to the net on a breakaway and received a nice pass from Sutter.
''I'm real happy with how we played the game and the contributions from everybody at both ends of the rink,'' Yeo said. ''I think we did a lot of really good things. There's a small margin between winning and losing. It's one save at a crucial moment, one goal at a crucial time. We were able to bust through.''
NOTES: Minnesota goalie Niklas Backstrom is out with a stomach virus. ... Winnipeg forward Evander Kane is out until February with a lower-body injury. Kane took a shot by teammate Jay Harrison to his foot area during last Saturday's 4-3, overtime win over Minnesota. ... Winnipeg recalled forward Patrice Cormier from the AHL's St. John's IceCaps. ... The Jets are still without their injured top-four defensemen Toby Enstrom, Zach Bogosian, Jacob Trouba and Mark Stuart. ... Minnesota center Mikael Granlund broke his left wrist in last Saturday's loss to Winnipeg and will be out about four weeks. Defenseman Jonas Brodin didn't travel to Winnipeg after sustaining an upper-body injury in the same game.