ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Thomas Vanek and Mikko Koivu scored early in a three-goal third period and the Minnesota Wild pulled away to beat the Calgary Flames 4-2 on Friday night.
Matt Dumba and Zach Parise also scored for Minnesota, which pulled within a point of Chicago for third place in the Central Division and moved a point ahead of Winnipeg for the top wild-card spot. The Wild have won four in row and six of seven.
Devan Dubnyk stopped 23 shots. He made his 33rd consecutive start since joining Minnesota and 34th overall, tying Antti Niemi for the most consecutive starts in the NHL since 2010-11.
Josh Jooris and Markus Granlund scored for Calgary, 2-3-2 in its past seven. Making his fifth straight start, Karri Ramo stopped 31 shots before being pulled in the third period.
With the game tied at 1 in the third period, Justin Fontaine circled behind the Calgary net and lost the puck briefly. He quickly gathered it in the left circle and backhanded a pass across to Vanek alone at the edge of the crease. His second whack knocked the puck in at 3:36 for his seventh goal in 10 games.
Less than 4 minutes later, Koivu and Stewart perfectly executed a 2-on-1 entering the offensive zone with Stewart’s centering pass to Koivu was tipped into the Calgary net.
Parise scored unassisted on a breakaway nearly 5 minutes later for his 30th goal of the season to make it 4-1. Granlund scored on a tip with 4:43 to play for the Flames.
Calgary entered the game with an NHL-best plus-36 goal differential in the third period.
The Flames are a point behind Los Angeles in the Pacific Division and three points behind Winnipeg for the second wild-card playoff spot. Calgary has played one more game than the Kings.
Los Angeles — whose gear was in the building Friday — plays in Minnesota Saturday night. The Wild are then off until Thursday against the New York Rangers as part of a five-game homestand.
This was the first of five straight on the road for Calgary. The Flames are in Nashville Sunday to be followed by games in Dallas, St. Louis and Edmonton.
Jooris gave the Flames a 1-0 lead early in the first, scoring off a scramble in front, but Dumba tied the game less than 5 minutes later.
Dumba took a cross-ice pass from Granlund in the left circle and shot from low in the left circle. Ramo mostly stopped the initial shot, but the puck trickled behind him allowing Dumba to charge in and push the disc across the line.
Minnesota had the better scoring chances in the second, but Ramo stopped all 15 shots, including a mask save of a Chris Stewart shot and a quick glove to thwart a tip by Erik Haula.
NOTES: Calgary C Paul Byron returned after missing 16 games with a lower-body injury. He had an assist. … Minnesota activated C Ryan Carter off injured reserve. He took part in warmups but did not play. Carter missed 22 games with an upper-body injury. … There were just three penalties in the game, two on Minnesota.
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