The Wild Beat
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The Wild started the same group for overtime Saturday as it did Friday when the Wild quickly picked up a 4-3 victory over the Ducks.

And although the team secured the same outcome, another 4-3 win against Anaheim at Xcel Energy Center, a new crew delivered.

Victor Rask turned a Matt Dumba stretch pass into a game-winning shot, unleashing the puck behind Ducks goalie Ryan Miller 2 minutes, 46 seconds into overtime for Rask's second goal in as many games.

"He makes plays," coach Dean Evason said of Rask, who reached the 10-goal mark with the tally. "There's lots of ice out there. He's such an intelligent player. He's one of those guys that is one step ahead. He's always thinking one step ahead."

The previous night, captain Jared Spurgeon and center Joel Eriksson Ek set up Kirill Kaprizov for the clincher. That trio was back on the ice again Saturday in overtime, but this time the game didn't end in the Wild's favor until Rask took the ice. He scored late into his shift with Dumba and winger Mats Zuccarello.

And while Rask usually anchors his line defensively at 5-on-5, his goal was yet another reminder of how effective he can be at the other end of the rink.

After scoring just five goals last season to go along with eight assists, Rask has been much more productive in 2021. Aside from his 10 goals, he also has 13 assists. His 23 points are the most since he had 31 with Carolina in 2017-18.

"We do feel very good about his game period," Evason said. "We have from the start. We made a commitment as an organization in the summer when we sat down as a management team we had to give a guy like him a shot. We talked about it. He needs to get an opportunity to play. He was given the opportunity. But more importantly he's taken it and run with it."

The Wild finished the regular season 21-5-2 at home for a .786 points percentage that is tops in franchise history – besting 2006-07 (.768), 2017-18 (.756), 2013-14 (.695) and 2016-17 (.683).

"Obviously, we have a great record at home," winger Nick Bonino said. "So, we took care of business this weekend, gave ourselves a chance at home ice in the playoffs, and then see where the chips fall with Colorado's games moving forward. But we'll just try to handle what we can and see if we have home ice. That's something we'd really like."

Before leaving the ice after the game, the Wild shook hands with Miller, who was playing his final NHL game. Miller announced last month he'd be retiring after the season, and the Ducks' schedule ended Saturday.

"The game is such a wonderful game and for guys like that, for Miller, to play as many games as he did and how many years and with the standard of his play has been absolutely phenomenal," Evason said. "We have a great respect for that."

The Wild will close out its regular season in St. Louis, playing the Blues Wednesday and Thursday before the playoffs begin.

"We could start Saturday next week," Bonino said. "We'll recharge for two days, get a good skate in and play two heavy games against a good team and kind of get back to that playoff mode and go from there."