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Game 65 Preview: Avalanche @ Wild

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After the excitement and hype of the Stadium Series and Trade Deadline, the Avalanche (32-28-4) look ahead to the stretch run, starting with a critical matchup with the Minnesota Wild (28-25-10) Tuesday night in St. Paul.

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

While the exciting weekend ended in disappointment for the Avalanche when they fell to the Red Wings off a fluky last minute goal in the Stadium Series game, they were given some new excitement Monday when general manager Joe Sakic worked some magic to improve the team for the stretch run. The biggest two trades involved the Avalanche acquiring a top-six forward in Mikkel Boedker and a depth defenseman in Eric Gelinas. Boedker, an unrestricted free agent at the years end could prove to be a risky addition for the Avalanche, as the 26-year-old winger is set to make big money on the open market this summer. But the speedy young winger will serve as a much needed improvement over the aging Alex Tanguay alongside 20-year-old superstar Nathan MacKinnon as the Avs look to continue their playoff push.

The Avs will need to start that push against the Minnesota Wild Tuesday night. After getting out of their free fall down the standings, the Wild have used their games in hand over the Avalanche to claw within striking distance. A Wild win in regulation tonight, and the northern rivals will leapfrog over the Avalanche and into the second wildcard spot. While the weekend may have given the Avs a chance to have one last hoorah with their old rivals, they will have to fend off their new ones in order to maintain their playoff position.

LINES

Landeskog-Mackinnon-Boedker

Grigorenko-Duchene-Iginla

Matthias-Soderberg-Comeau

McLeod-Mitchell-Skille

Beauchemin-Johnson

Holden-Barrie

Gelinas-Bigras

Varlamov

Pickard

Scratches: Bodnarchuk, Redmond, Martinsen

NOTES

- Boedker and Gelinas will wear numbers 89 and 44 respectively.

- The Wild are 5-3 in their last eight games after losing 12 of the previous 13 before that.

- The Wild also made a few trades Monday, including acquiring former Avalanche winger, David Jones from the Calgary Flames. This is the second year in a row that Wild have acquired a former Avalanche, having acquired Chris Stewart last season at the deadline.

- The Avs also parted ways with Marc-Andre Cliche on Monday, sending him to the New York Islanders in exchange for Taylor Beck.

GAME INFO

Game time: 6pm MT

TV: ALT