Josh Harding to start Game 5

Updated: May 9, 2013, 8:42 PM ET
By Jesse Rogers |

CHICAGO -- The Minnesota Wild will start Josh Harding in goal in Thursday's critical Game 5 of their Western Conference quarterfinal series against the Chicago Blackhawks, coach Mike Yeo said.

Harding left Game 4 after 40 minutes of play after colliding with Hawks center Jonathan Toews in the second period. Rookie Darcy Kuemper will back up Harding after finishing Game 4 on Tuesday. He gave up two goals in the third period of the Hawks' 3-0 victory, giving Chicago a 3-1 series lead.

Regular starter Niklas Backstrom has been out since Game 1 when he injured himself during warm-ups. Backstrom became Kuemper's backup when Harding went down but isn't healthy enough to dress for Game 5.

Jesse Rogers | email

Chicago Cubs beat reporter
Jesse joined ESPN Chicago in September 2009 and covers the Chicago Cubs for and ESPN Radio 1000.