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Moulson has 2 goals, assist vs. Islanders

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 18, 2014 at 10:11 pm •  Published: March 18, 2014
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UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) — It was as if Matt Moulson never left the New York Islanders.

He was scoring goals, hearing cheers and chants of his name at Nassau Coliseum, and waving his stick to the crowd after being chosen as the game's No. 1 star. And none of the fans decked out in orange and blue seemed to mind a bit that he was doing major damage against the home team while wearing a Minnesota Wild sweater.

In his first game as an Islanders opponent since being dealt, Moulson scored two goals and had three points in the Wild's 6-0 rout of New York on Tuesday night.

"I was pretty nervous. I don't think I slept a minute during pregame nap," Moulson said. "I was here for a long time. This team had a big place in my heart when I was here. The fans give great support. It was pretty emotional."

Ilya Bryzgalov made 16 of his 36 saves in the first period when the Wild took a 2-0 lead. Minnesota made the most of 22 shots on a night coach Mike Yeo switched up his lines.

"It some ways, you feel a little bit bad. You don't want to sit there and run up the score. That's not the intention there," Yeo said. "(Moulson) is a guy that is obviously very, very well respected here. You see what the crowd is doing in a game like that. I thought that was very classy."

Frustration was also noticeable in the crowd that is fed up with general manager Garth Snow, who not only traded Moulson, but this month also dealt Thomas Vanek — the key player acquired when Moulson was sent to Buffalo.

Moulson, like Vanek an impending free agent, was traded by Buffalo to Minnesota this month. He scored the first of the Wild's two goals in the opening period and their third in the final frame.

"Anytime a trade happens or something when you switch teams, you have something to prove," Moulson said. "I had a lot of family and friends here so I made sure I didn't embarrass them."

Wild forward Zach Parise will have a similar experience Thursday when the former Devils star plays in New Jersey for the first time since leaving as a free agent.

"It's a little different situation. He got traded and I didn't," Parise said with a laugh. "I don't know how it's going to be when I get there."

Jared Spurgeon, a sixth-round pick of the Islanders in the 2008 draft, made it 2-0.

Mikael Granlund pushed the lead to 3-0 in the second, defenseman Clayton Stoner scored his first goal of the season on a breakaway in the third, and Justin Fontaine was credited with a goal after a video review to make it 5-0. Mikko Koivu had three assists to move past Marian Gaborik for the most points in Wild history with 438.

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