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Wild 4, Flames 3

The SportsXchange

CALGARY, Alberta -- Acquiring Jason Pominville at the trade deadline was supposed to give the Minnesota Wild a much-needed offensive push to earn a playoff spot.

Pominville continues to deliver his side of the bargain.

He scored twice Monday, including the eventual game-winner, to lead the Wild to a 4-3 victory over the Calgary Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome.

Pominville, traded by the Buffalo Sabres along with a fourth-round draft choice in exchange for young goalie Matt Hackett, prospect forward Johan Larsson, a first-round draft choice and second-round pick, now has collected four goals and six points in six games for the Wild since the deal.

More important, he was a catalyst in a victory that snapped Minnesota's three-game winless skid.

Having dropped six of the last seven games, the Wild were on the verge of possibly falling out of a playoff spot, but they took an early lead when Mikko Koivu scored just over two minutes into the game.

Pominville's first of the night midway through the second period doubled the edge.

The Flames, who are one lost point or a single point earned by the Detroit Red Wings from being officially eliminated, briefly made a game of it when Jiri Hudler scored early in the third period.

However, Pierre-Marc Bouchard scored 11 seconds later, and Pominville added his second of the game shortly after to seal the deal.

With the win, the Wild moved up to sixth spot in the West.

Ben Hanowski made his NHL debut a success by scoring later in the third period for the Flames, who are in the mix for the league's worst record.

Another Flames rookie, Sven Baertschi, scored with 39 seconds remaining to make it a frantic finish.

NOTES: Hanowski was one of the two prospects, along with a first-round draft choice, acquired by the Flames from Pittsburgh in the trade that sent Jarome Iginla to the Penguins. Hanowski, whose fourth season at St. Cloud State University came to an end in the semifinal of the NCAA Frozen Four, signed with the team over the weekend and stepped into the lineup. The fact his first NHL game came against the Wild wasn't lost on the Minnesota product. "Growing up, this is what you always dreamed of, playing in the NHL," he said. "(Facing the Wild) adds the cherry on top. It'll be fun to be out there. Playing Minnesota just makes it that much sweeter than it would have been anyway." ... With the addition of Hanowski, the Flames -- who were the oldest team in the NHL earlier in the season -- now have six players age 24 and under on the roster. By comparison, the Wild have seven players age 24 and under. ... The Wild received a big lift with the return to the lineup of C Matt Cullen, who missed a half-dozen outings. ... Flames forward Michael Cammalleri played the 600th game of his NHL career. ... With his second-period goal, Wild forward Jason Pominville has finally scored against every NHL team.

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League type:
Free Yahoo League
League size:
10 players
Draft time:
Aug 30 9:00 am
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