St. Paul, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Thomas Vanek's two first-period goals helped the Minnesota Wild earn a 6-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday.
Vanek scored both goals within the first 8 1/2 minutes of the game, and he added an assist later to help Minnesota extend its point streak to 10 games (8-0-2). The Wild also got goals from Jordan Schroeder, Nate Prosser, Erik Haula and Zach Parise.
Devan Dubnyk made 24 saves in the win.
"Overall I thought the first 20 was good, then got a little sloppy," Vanek said.
Carolina lost for the second straight game after falling in an early 3-0 hole. Anton Khudobin allowed five goals on 23 shots.
Andrej Nestrasil, Jeff Skinner and Elias Lindholm tallied goals for the Hurricanes.
"It was a very bizarre game," said Carolina head coach Bill Peters. "It was as bad as we've played in a long time."
Barely a minute into the game, the Wild went up 1-0 thanks to Vanek and a defensive breakdown. The Hurricanes failed to pick up Vanek on the weakside, and he had a wide open net to shoot at after Mikael Granlund's pass.
Vanek added to the lead later in the period. He again found a soft spot in the defense, took the pass from Justin Fontaine and slid the puck into the net off Khudobin's pad.
The Wild led 3-0 after Schroeder's goal with 4 1/2 to go in the first period. He skated around the defense to create a shooting lane and whipped the puck by Khudobin.
Carolina got on the board in the closing seconds of the period. Jay McClement's backhand shot was saved by Dubnyk, but Nestrasil had an empty net to tap the rebound in.
It did not take long for the Wild to respond in the second period with Prosser's goal. Vanek found him jumping into the play with a cross-ice pass, and Prosser's centering pass was redirected off Justin Faulk's stick into the net.
The Hurricanes made it a one-goal game with a pair of scores separated by 1 1/2 minutes. Skinner scored first on a one-timer set up by a Minnesota turnover, and Lindholm followed with a deflection on Faulk's shot from the point.
Haula added an insurance goal for the Wild early in the third period. Faulk got his stick on Kyle Brodziak's pass, but Haula was still able to knock the puck into the net.
With two minutes left, Parise scored on an empty net.
Minnesota has won five home games in a row ... The Wild penalty kill is 25- for-25 since the All-Star break ... Minnesota has won 10 straight games in which it scores first ... Dubnyk won his 10th game in 13 starts since being acquired from Arizona ... The season series concludes on March 6 at Carolina.