The Minnesota Wild gave up a lot to acquire Jason Pominville at the trade deadline, and on Sunday the veteran winger showed them why he might be worth the price. The Wild were able to snap a three-game losing streak and hold on to the sixth spot in the Western Conference standings as they defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0. Pominville scored his first goal as a member of the Wild and also added an assist. Goaltender Niklas Backstrom recorded his 20th win and second shutout of the season, as he turned aside all 24 shots he faced. Rookie Charlie Coyle scored the other goal for the Wild, his sixth of the season.
Pominville assisted on Ryan Suter’s second-period power play goal, then added a goal of his own in the third period. While it was his first goal with the Wild, it was his 11th of the season and gives him 27 points in 39 games. The Wild sent prospects Matt Hackett and Johan Larsson as well as two draft picks to the Buffalo Sabres in order to get Pominville, and hope he will be a big part of their return to the playoffs. With Pominville in the fold, a recent injury to Dany Heatley won’t hit the team quite as hard as it would have a few weeks ago. Heatley will likely miss the rest of the regular season and will need surgery to repair a dislocated shoulder.
The Wild now face the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night, as they try and improve their position heading into the playoffs.