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Wild lose Backstrom, game to Nashville

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Minnesota came out on the short end of tonight's contest against Ryan Suter's former team, from which he received boos from earlier in the day, 3-2 from Nashville.

The pain hardly stops there.

Starting goalie Niklas Backstrom was injured in the first period when Nashville winger Eric Nystrom went flying into Backstrom on a breakaway, an injury the Wild (in classic NHL form) are simply terming a "lower body injury."

Wild Defenseman Keith Ballard whiffed on a pass attempt at the Predators' blue line, and Nystrom scooped it up, with Ballard eventually hacking away at Nystrom enough for Nashville to be awarded a penalty shot. It also sent Nystrom into Backstrom's legs.

Backstrom skated off under his own power, and will be re-evaluated tomorrow.

Josh Harding came on in relief of Minnesota's starting goaltender, and faced the immediate task of stopping Nystrom on the penalty shot, which he could not.

That made it 3-1 Nashville, Minnesota's only goal at that point was this off the stick of Zach Parise.

Harding performed admirably in Backstrom's absence, allowing nothing aside from the penalty shot by him while saving 19 shots, but Minnesota came up short after getting one back in the second period.

Both of Minnesota's goals came off the power play, which was ranked fourth in the league entering the evening.

The Wild return to action at Xcel Energy Center Thursday against the Winnipeg Jets, a 7 p.m. puck-drop.

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