The Wild rolled out new line combinations for Game 6 against the Stars.
Kirill Kaprizov and Mats Zuccarello were split up, and so were Matt Boldy and Marcus Johansson.
Zuccarello and Johansson switched spots, with Zuccarello joining Boldy and Frederick Gaudreau and Johansson teaming up with Kaprizov and Ryan Hartman. Neither Hartman nor Zuccarello practiced Thursday, staying off the ice for maintenance, but they suited up Friday night at Xcel Energy Center.
Their five points apiece were tied for the most on the Wild through Game 5, and Zuccarello became only the third player in franchise history to open the playoffs on a four-game point streak.
But their line with Kaprizov hadn't had their usual spark, with Kaprizov carrying a four-game pointless skid into Game 6; that was the longest drought of his NHL career.
Johansson and Boldy also weren't clicking like before.
They were a formidable duo in the regular season after Johansson was brought in before the trade deadline from Washington, but they hadn't combined on a goal since Game 3. Actually, the entire Wild offense sputtered since then to fall behind 3-2 in the best-of-seven series.
After whiffing on breakaways and odd-man rushes in a 3-2 win for Dallas in Game 4, the Wild were blanked 4-0 during Game 5; Lakeville's Jake Oettinger's 27 saves sealed the first shutout of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Elsewhere up front, Marcus Foligno rejoined Gus Nyquist and Sam Steel after Foligno was ejected 2 minutes, 14 seconds into Game 5 for kneeing the Stars' Radek Faksa. The Wild kept the Brandon Duhaime, Connor Dewar and Ryan Reaves trio intact.
Oskar Sundqvist, who scored in his lone appearance in the series in Game 2, remained scratched.
Still, the Wild weren't at full strength.
Except for the first shift in Game 3, they haven't had all their players available; that's how long Joel Eriksson Ek returned from a lower-body injury that sidelined him for the last week of the regular season and the start of the playoffs.
Eriksson Ek has been out since skating that single, 19-second shift.
The Wild jumbled their top-two lines, but they didn't tweak their defensive pairs and they also kept Filip Gustavsson in net.
This was Gustavsson's fourth straight start, a season high; he was idle was for Game 2 when Marc-Andre Fleury was in the crease. Other than that, Fleury backed up Gustavsson, which is a change from the role the veteran netminder had for most of the playoffs last season.
A year ago, Fleury started all but one game vs. St. Louis.
"I've seen both our goalies support each other all year," coach Dean Evason said. "It's been a wonderful relationship, competitive relationship, that they compete hard for the net. They've done that all year. They're doing it now. But whichever choice we make, the other one supports the other one completely and that's been a nice positive situation for us all year."
The Stars' Joe Pavelski traveled to Minnesota and skated ahead of Game 6 but did not play Friday night.
Pavelski has been in concussion protocol and sidelined since Game 1 when he hit his head on the ice after a shoulder-to-shoulder check from Matt Dumba.