Falk, Prosser In Against Columbus; Wild Signs Haula

The Wild looks to celebrate National Beer Day by snapping a three-game skid, tonight against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Like tapping a fresh keg, the team looks to reset in its final contest of a three-game road trip.

Minnesota will go with netminder Niklas Backstrom. He’ll try to rebound after being pulled in the club’s last outing against the Los Angeles Kings. All-time following games being pulled, Backstrom is 20-2-4, posting a 1.91 goals against average and .935 save percentage. Since March 26, 2008, he is 16-0-2 with a 1.69 goals against average and a .943 save percentage in those contests.

The Wild will shake up its blue line, inserting Nate Prosser and Justin Falk into the lineup. The duo will skate together and replace Tom Gilbert and Brett Clark. Prosser talked to WildTV after the morning skate about playing a physical game and strategy against Columbus.

Wild Head Coach Mike Yeo spoke with the media after today’s skate about what team needs to be successful in tonight’s contest.

“This is the time of year that winners want to play hockey games,” Yeo said.

He’s excited for tonight’s game and wants to see how the team responds. The Wild bench boss expects the team to be focused right from the opening puck drop. After a day off for travel Friday and a practice day Saturday, Yeo believes the team will come out with more energy tonight.

WildTV also caught up with forward Mike Rupp, who talked about the team refocusing in the last couple of days. He agreed that the team wants to take care of the little things.

Earlier today, the Wild inked University of Minnesota standout, Erik Haula, to an entry-level contract.

“It’s time to take the next step in my hockey career,” Haula told the PONDcast. The 22-year-old is on his way to Houston and will join the Aeros, the Wild’s American Hockey League affiliate.

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