Hockey Today - Nov. 18

Hockey Today - Nov. 18

Sunday's key NHL matchup notes
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Detroit at Columbus

The Red Wings hope to avoid losing four straight games in regulation for the first time in nearly nine years when they face the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday night at Nationwide Arena.

Colorado at Minnesota

Minnesota beat the Avalanche 3-2 at home on Oct. 21, but has lost the last two meetings - both on the road. Colorado beat the Wild 4-2 last Sunday behind two goals from Paul Stastny and 25 saves from Peter Budaj.

Calgary at Vancouver

Vancouver is 7-0-1 within its division while 2-8-0 against all other teams. The only NHL club yet to lose in regulation to a division opponent, the Canucks' only blemish in those contests is a 1-0 shootout defeat Wednesday to Edmonton.

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Re: Hockey Today - Nov. 18

Koivu will miss about 1 week
November 17, 2007

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -Minnesota Wild center Mikko Koivu will miss about a week with a cracked bone in his left leg, the result of a vicious, stick-swinging hit by Vancouver's Mattias Ohlund.

Koivu was injured in the third period Friday night after getting whistled for an elbowing penalty. Ohlund responded by swinging his stick and slashing Koivu on the left leg, an action that could earn Ohlund a suspension from the NHL, which has been cracking down on hits deemed unnecessary or dirty.

The Wild were furious at the attack on Koivu, who has been arguably the team's best player so far this season with stars Marian Gaborik and Pavol Demitra struggling with groin injuries. Koivu leads the team with 11 assists and 16 points and has shown signs of evolving into a dominant center.

Wild enforcer Derek Boogaard said he wasn't ``going to stand for it,'' and looked forward to a rematch against the Canucks in St. Paul on Wednesday night.

``It was a two-handed baseball swing. Obviously a slash like that, you expect to see at least a five-game suspension,'' Boogaard said.

Losing Koivu is a big blow for the center-starved Wild, who already are without Wes Walz. The gritty veteran was granted a leave of absence from the team for unspecified reasons and is thought to be contemplating retirement.

That leaves them with three healthy centers - Eric Belanger, James Sheppard and Dominic Moore.

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