ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Loui Eriksson’s goal 1:30 into overtime gave Boston a 3-2 win over Minnesota on Wednesday night, only the second victory for the Bruins in eight games and the fourth loss for the Wild in the past six.
Carl Soderberg, who set up the winner with a cross-crease pass in front of Wild defenseman Marco Scandella, scored early for the Bruins along with Patrice Bergeron.
Jason Pominville tied the game in the third period, and Kyle Brodziak also had a goal for the Wild, but Niklas Backstrom was beaten in the net for the second straight night. He stopped 22 shots.
Niklas Svedberg made 35 saves for the Bruins in just his second start in 11 games. He relieved Tuukka Rask, who lost in a shootout on Tuesday at Nashville.
Pominville scored off his foot with 8:21 remaining in regulation. A failed clear of the rebound of Ryan Suter’s shot gave Suter the puck back for a pass that ping-ponged over to his teammate.
The Bruins activated center David Krejci, who had a team-high 69 points last season, off the injured list. The announcement during warmups drew a cheer from the smattering of Bruins fans in attendance.
Krejci had missed 17 of 19 games because of a lower-body injury. He skated on a line that was active around the net with Seth Griffith and Milan Lucic.
Soderberg scored early in the first period on his own rebound of an initial attempt blocked by Justin Fontaine, but the Wild answered 27 seconds later when Brodziak took possession in traffic near the boards and sent a shot over Svedberg’s right shoulder.
Bergeron gave the Bruins the lead back a little later, when he was just trying to send the puck at the net one stride past the blue line. It knuckled toward Backstrom and took a strange bounce to skip past the goalie’s blocker with 2:05 left in the first period.
The Wild found their rhythm in the second, outshooting the Bruins 20-5, but there was nothing to show for it. They had a 5-on-3 power play for 62 seconds after penalties on Bergeron and Kevan Miller but recorded only one shot. Zach Parise was tripped by Miller and still managed to keep a 2-on-1 alive, but Pominville didn’t connect cleanly on a one-timer.
Svedberg stayed strong, and had some help from the post when Mikael Granlund’s drive later in the second clanged away. Backstrom later made a toe save to stop Torey Krug’s breakaway.
Backstrom played through a stomach illness at Chicago on Tuesday, giving up four goals on 38 shots in the 5-3 loss. He replaced starter Darcy Kuemper, who came down with a similar sickness a few hours before faceoff.
With Kuemper still ailing, a less-than-full-strength Backstrom got the call again. He was backed up by John Curry, an emergency call-up from the Wild’s AHL affiliate. Josh Harding was recently sent to Iowa to get back in game shape after breaking his foot before the season, but he is unavailable because complications from multiple sclerosis have arisen.
The Wild have ruled out the mumps with Backstrom and Kuemper and defenseman Jared Spurgeon, who returned from a two-game absence.
NOTES: Soderberg scored for the first time in 16 games since Nov. 10. Bergeron’s goal was his first in 12 games since Nov. 18. … Backstrom fell to 5-0-2 in seven starts against the Bruins. … The Wild dropped to 12-2-2 against the Bruins. … Eriksson has 29 points in 31 career games against the Wild.
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