The Pens are coming off of a game where they had to fight to earn a point. They've been inconsistent so far this year, but it's still early.
The Wild started the season 6-0-1. They've since lost three in a row on the road. They're returning home, where they are perfect on the year (4-0). Their hot start has been a result of defense and goal tending, with much of the credit going to Niklas Backstrom.
Backstrom missed Sunday's game with a tweaked groin. No word yet on his availability for the Pens game.
This will likely be two different games, depending on whether or not Backstrom is in goal. If he is, the Pens will be hard-pressed to win. If not, they may have some better offensive opportunities.
The offensively challenged Wild will have an even harder time scoring, since they're likely to be missing both Gaborik and Demitra.
Wild blog - check out Mike Russo's blog on the Star Tribune website.
Let's Go Pens!