Niklas Backstrom made 28 saves and three different players scored goals as the Minnesota Wild beat the Colorado Avalanche in Denver 3-2 last night, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. The win gives the Wild first place in the Northwest Division heading into the All-Star break. Pavol Demitra, Brian Rolston and Todd Fedoruk scored for Minnesota. In other NHL action:
- After retiring Brian Leetch's No. 2 jersey, the New York Rangers beat the Atlanta Thrashers 2-1 on a shootout goal by Brendan Shanahan.
- Pascal Leclaire pitched his eighth shutout of the season with 30 saves as the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Chicago Blackhawks, 1-0.