Two days after breaking Marian Gaborik's franchise record for points by a rookie, Wild sensation Kirill Kaprizov delivered a dagger late in the third period to help Minnesota (29-13-3) take down the Arizona Coyotes 3-1 in Phoenix.
Kaprizov was pushed off the puck on a breakaway but regained control behind the Coyote net and wrapped around for another highlight-reel goal. The tally was his 19th goal of the season, passing Gaborik for the most goals by a rookie in team history.
"It's undeniable that he's taken this team and moved it to the next level with his play," Minnesota forward Nico Sturm said, via NHL.com. "He fights off guys on the boards, he's so strong. That's just really impressive what he's done this year."
Kaprizov's goal put the Wild up 3-1 with 1;40 left in the third period. Minnesota took a 2-1 lead four minutes and 20 seconds into the third on a goal by Marcus Foligno. Kevin Fiala also scored for the Wild.
While Kaprizov gets the glory, it was goaltender Cam Talbot who stood tall for 60 minutes as Arizona peppered him with 40 shots on goal. Talbot stopped 39 to improve to 5-0-1 in his past six starts and 12-2-2 in his past 16.
Minnesota enters play Thursday in third place in the West Division with 61 points. Colorado has two games in hand and is three points ahead of the Wild in second place, while the Vegas Golden Knights, who clinched a playoff spot Wednesday night, lead the division with 68 points.
"It's the best time of the year, this is where you have to start building for the playoffs and ramping up your game and making sure that you're tightening up the little areas that you can tighten up before the playoffs," Talbot said.
Up next: Wild at Kings, Friday at 9 p.m.