Wild 4, Kings 3 (SO)

Jess Myers, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Matt Cullen scored in a shootout, lifting the Minnesota Wild to a 4-3 come-from-behind win Saturday over the Los Angeles Kings.
Mike Richards had the only shootout goal for the Kings, who saw a 3-1 lead slip away. Parise, Cullen and Charlie Coyle had regulation goals for the Wild, who have won eight of their last nine. Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter and Justin Williams had goals for the Kings in regulation.
Los Angeles struck first, taking advantage of the game's first power play. Dustin Brown corralled a loose puck in front of the Minnesota net and snapped a rising wrist shot past Backstrom for the Kings' captain's 14th goal of the season. Minnesota answered not long afterward, when Matt Cullen's long-range rocket eluded Kings goalie Jonathan Quick.
The Wild started the second period on a power play but could not convert. By contrast, the Kings power play improved to 2-for-2 early in the second when Jeff Carter got his team-best 19th goal of the season, shooting from the top of the right circle while Jarret Stoll screened Backstrom.
Justin Williams doubled the Los Angeles lead midway through the game, blocking a slap shot by Minnesota defenseman Clayton Stoner at the blue line, then going coast to coast on a breakaway and beating Backstom with a low shot.
But the Wild weren't going away, and pulled back within a goal before the middle period was over. Rookie Charlie Coyle couldn't cleanly handle a set-up pass from Mikko Koivu in front of the Kings net, but Coyle was able to keep the puck in front of him and from his knees swatted it past a diving Quick. It was Coyle's fourth career goal.
Minnesota's power play finally clicked well enough to forge a 3-3 tie, when Koivu fed Zach Parise at the left of the net, and Parise lifted a high shot over a sprawling Quick. It was the 15th goal of the season for Parise, and his sixth power play goal. He leads the Wild in both categories.
Quick finished with 25 saves for the Kings, who play in Dallas on Sunday night. For the Wild, Backstrom had 28 saves. They host St. Louis on Monday.
NOTES: Defenseman Brett Clark, signed by the Wild as a free agent on March 13, finally made his debut in a Minnesota uniform on Saturday. Clark, 36, played the previous two seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning, and was skating for Oklahoma City in the AHL when the Wild acquired him. He was paired with Tom Gilbert on the blue line. ... Wild tough guy Zenon Konopka's sister Cynthia sang the "Star Spangled Banner" prior to the game. ... Kings right wing Dustin Penner was a healthy scratch for the third consecutive game. Penner has two goals in 24 games and has been the subject of some trade rumors. ... While the Wild were losing 5-3 in Dallas on Friday night, the Kings were already in Minnesota, having arrived in the early hours of Friday morning, after a 4-2 Thursday night win in St. Louis. ... Cullen's first-period goal for Minnesota was his third in the past four games.

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