On the heels of Wednesday's 4-2 loss at Toronto, the Wild did not have a morning skate Thursday to preserve energy for tonight’s game at Montreal. Coach Bruce Boudreau hopes that can help his team end a three-game losing streak, which will be a tough task for many reasons.
Montreal has improved noticeably since a 6-3 loss to the Wild at Xcel Energy Center on Nov. 2. The Canadiens are on a three-game win streak and are riding a fantastic season debut by goaltender Charlie Lindgren of Lakeville. The former St. Cloud State goalie is playing in place of the injured Carey Price and is 2-0, including a shutout at Chicago on Sunday.
Lindgren, 23, was signed by Montreal as an undrafted free agent in 2016 and is 5-0 in his NHL career. A 6-0 career start would equal that of Canadiens legend Ken Dryden.
When it was mentioned to Boudreau that playing his hometown NHL team is likely to be a “special night’’ for Lindgren, he joked, “I hope it’s not a special night for him. He’s had three good wins. Let’s just leave it at that.’’
Lindgren’s start, though, has not been lost on Boudreau. “He’s a good young goalie,’’ the coach said. “I’ve heard a lot of good things about him, not just this week, but before this week. I heard he had a real good (training) camp, too.
“We’ve seen this story happen many times, almost once a year. A young goalie comes out and the main guy gets hurt, and he steals the spotlight for a long time. Now it’s his turn. But hopefully we can break the bubble a little bit.’’
Speaking of goalies, the Wild will have one of its own back in the fold for Saturday’s road-trip finale at Philadelphia. Alex Stalock went home Wednesday to be with his wife, Felicia, for the birth of their daughter, Selena, who was born Wednesday. He will rejoin the team in Philly.