ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Kirill Kaprizov had a goal and three assists for the Minnesota Wild, who used a four-goal third period to spoil Dallas defenseman Ryan Suter’s return with a 7-2 victory over the Stars on Thursday night.
Mats Zuccarello and Alex Goligoski each had a goal and two assists, and Victor Rask had a goal and an assist for Minnesota. Rem Pitlick, Ryan Hartman and Frederick Gaudreau also scored as the Wild had at least one point from 11 of their 12 forwards in their season-high goal total.
Jacob Peterson and Jamie Benn scored in the third period, but the Stars fell apart down the stretch and pulled goalie Anton Khudobin after Zuccarello and Rask scored 45 seconds apart to push Minnesota’s lead to five. Jake Oettinger relieved Khudobin, the former Wild prospect, for some mop-up duty in his home state.
Cam Talbot was working on his first shutout of the season when Peterson cut the lead to 3-1 with an extra-effort goal at 3:50 of the third period after his first shot attempt was blocked.
The Stars went on the power play a minute later, but 25 seconds after it expired Goligoski grabbed the momentum back for Minnesota with his slap shot against the team he spent more than a third of his 14-year career with. Talbot, who has started 13 of Minnesota’s 16 games, stopped 36 shots.
After an uneven start to the season, the Stars looked like they had some momentum going into this game, too, with consecutive 5-2 victories over Philadelphia and Detroit. They never quite matched Minnesota’s attack, though, and fell behind 2-0 in the first period.
Kaprizov got the second one for the Wild, his fourth of the season on a one-timer off a slick pass from Zuccarello. They’ve been linemates all season until this game, when they were broken up, but a post-power-play scramble left them on the ice at the same time.
Hartman added his team-leading eighth goal with 1:01 left in the second period.
Just as they did for Zach Parise when the veteran left wing returned to Minnesota 11 days ago with the New York Islanders, the Wild played a highlight video of Suter’s time with the team during the first TV timeout of the first period. Suter waved and smiled to the fans he grew so fond of over nine seasons in Minnesota. The Wild bought out his and Parise’s contracts this summer.
The Stars start a three-game homestand by hosting St. Louis on Saturday.
The Wild begin a three-game trip at Florida on Saturday.