Wild hope to continue surge in Toronto

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Minnesota Wild hope to aid their playoff quest with another victory when they visit the lowly Toronto Maple Leafs for Monday's tilt at Air Canada Centre.

The Wild picked up their third win in four games Saturday, beating the visiting St. Louis Blues, 6-3. The victory pushed Minnesota to 20-5-1 over its last 26 games, as Mike Yeo's club continued a terrific second half of the season.

Thanks in part to the play of goaltender Devan Dubnyk, the Wild find themselves occupying the first of two wild card spots in the Western Conference. They are one point ahead of Winnipeg for that distinction and five clear of the Los Angeles Kings. Both the Jets and Kings play on the road Monday, with L.A. visiting New Jersey and Winnipeg taking on Edmonton.

Dubnyk made his 30th straight start in net Saturday and helped anchor the win against St. Louis. He made 26 saves and improved to 22-6-1 with a 1.76 goals against average after being acquired from Arizona in January.

Although the Wild also have a road test tomorrow against the New York Islanders, Dubnyk could start both tilts of the two-game trip.

The Wild received goals from six different players on Saturday. They scored twice in the opening period and led the Blues 4-0 by the early stages of the second stanza. It was Minnesota's second win over St. Louis in a week, as the Wild also posted a 3-1 road victory over the Blues on the previous Saturday.

Justin Fontaine recorded a goal and two assists for the Wild. Jonas Brodin added a goal and a helper, while Thomas Vanek scored to extended his point streak to seven games. Vanek has five goals and three assists during the run.

Charlie Coyle and Ryan Suter each had a pair of helpers in the victory.

"We're playing well and it's a big win for us against these guys," said Wild forward Zach Parise, who tallied a goal as well. "They're always a tough opponent."

Minnesota was coming off Thursday's 3-2 home loss against Washington. The Wild haven't dropped back-to-back games since Jan. 19-20.

The Wild have won eight straight on the road and own 20-14-2 away record this season.

The Maple Leafs enter Monday having lost five straight -- all in regulation -- and the club does not seem poised to play a spoiler role down the stretch. However, Toronto did manage to score three times in Saturday's 5-3 loss at Ottawa after scoring only once in each of its previous three games.

Toronto rallied from down 3-1 in the second period to tie the game, but Kyle Turris made it a 4-3 for the Senators with 52 seconds left in the middle stanza. Turris later added an empty-net tally in the final minute of regulation.

Joakim Lindstrom, Tim Erixon and Leo Komarov all lit the lamp for the Maple Leafs. James Reimer allowed three goals on 18 shots, while Jonathan Bernier stopped 21-of-22 shots in relief.

"It's obviously nice to put one in, but it doesn't really matter now. We wanted a win there," said Erixon.

Toronto is playing the first of four straight on home ice tonight. The Leafs are 19-15-1 at Air Canada Centre this season compared to a dreadful 8-25-5 mark on the road.

Minnesota has won its last two meetings with the Maple Leafs and posted a 3-1 home win over Toronto on Jan. 2. However, the Wild have lost in six of their seven all-time trips to the ACC.