January 19, 2013
ST. PAUL, Minn. • Dany Heatley had two power-play goals on assists from new teammate Zach Parise, and the offense-enhanced Wild surged into their much-anticipated season with a 4-2 victory Saturday over the Avalanche.
Mikael Granlund also scored for the Wild in his first NHL appearance, Pierre-Marc Bouchard had a late goal in his first game in more than a year and Niklas Backstrom made 25 saves.
John Mitchell scored early in his debut for the Avalanche and Cody McLeod cut the lead to one with 14:51 remaining, but they were done in during a penalty-ridden second period that had goalie Semyon Varmalov on his heels.
Varmalov made several tricky saves, denying Matt Cullen, Parise and Heatley. But the Wild stayed patient, passing the puck until picking their shooting spots.