Zuccarello scores twice as Wild top Arizona 5-2

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·3 min read
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ST. PAUL, Minn. — Mats Zuccarello scored twice and Nick Bonino had a goal and two assists on Wednesday to lead the Minnesota Wild past the Arizona Coyotes 5-2.

It was the Wild’s first game since the death on Sunday of 20-year-old Daunte Wright, a Black man fatally shot by police during a traffic stop.

And the Wild’s originally scheduled game on Monday against St. Louis was postponed until next month. And Wednesday’s game was also moved to 1 p.m. local time.

Both of Zuccarello’s goals came on Minnesota’s resurgent power play, which converted all three of its opportunities in the game. The Wild have 12 power-play goals in their past seven games.

Zach Parise and Jared Spurgeon also scored and Cam Talbot made 28 saves for Minnesota, which beat Arizona for the fifth time in six games this season and solidified its hold on third place in the West Division.

Jakob Chychrun and Phil Kessel scored for the Coyotes, who wrapped up a nine-game road grip with their fifth straight loss. Antti Raanta, who had been out since March 22 because of an injury, stopped 17 of 22 shots.

The Wild scored the only goal of the first period when Zuccarello netted his seventh of the season at 16:31. After a nifty give-and-go with Matt Dumba to enter the zone, Marcus Johansson fired a pass across the slot to Zuccarello, who slipped a shot between Raanta and the near post.

Arizona tied it on the power play early in the second period as Chychrun scored his 13th goal of the season on a blistering wrist shot that beat Talbot over his shoulder.

Minnesota regained the lead five minutes later when Parise banged home a rebound of Bonino’s shot. It was just the fifth goal of the season for Parise, who averaged 24 goals a year in his first eight seasons with the Wild but has struggled with injuries this year.

The Wild took a 3-1 lead late in the second with their second power-play goal in as many chances. Kirill Kaprizov’s pass from behind the net hit a skate and deflected across the crease to Bonino, who tapped it into the open net.

Zuccarello made it 3-for-3 with the man advantage for the Wild when he took a drop pass from Johansson and lifted a shot over Raanta’s shoulder.

Just over a minute later, Spurgeon made it 5-1 with a deft deflection of Parise’s centring pass.

Kessel one-timed Dryden Hunt’s pass from behind the net for his 16th of the season, cutting the Arizona deficit to 5-2 midway through the third.

UP NEXT

Coyotes: Host the Blues on Saturday afternoon. The teams are locked in a tight battle for the fourth and final playoff spot in the West.

Wild: Host San Jose for a pair of games Friday and Saturday.

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More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Patrick Donnelly, The Associated Press