Wild roller coaster keeps on moving
Image courtesy of Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY SportsPommer scored the first two goals of the night, one being quite the sniper shot and the other being in the right place at the right time in front of the net. With that 2-0 lead in the second, the Canucks got even before the period was up with a couple on the power play. Don’t worry about the Sedins; they had three of the four assists on those two goals.
Tie game going into the third period, which seemed like it would be an overtime game waiting to happen. It didn’t take long (1:09 and 2:08) for Vancouver to go up 4-2. That’s right. Four unanswered goals.
Then Zucker comes through just more than a minute later with his beautiful breakaway goal. Yes, he hit the net. Yes, it appeared he copied the page right out of the Mikko Koivu shootout book. The roller coaster continued. Later in the period with the Wild putting on the pressure, Erik Haula scored his fourth of the season to get the game tied up again. Holla, third line!
But once again the excitement was shortlived. A shot from the point was deflected past Darcy Kuemper for the winner. There were a few bounces and tips on both sides during the game. Not an excuse for anything.
Needless to say when a final score is 5-4, that’s not a great example of good defense or solid goaltending. Especially in the closing minutes, it looked like the Canucks were on some extended power play. Kuemper, obviously not in the nets every night, didn’t look sharp a few times throughout the night. He mishandled a puck that should have ended up in his glove and another time couldn’t freeze the puck leading to a goal.
Going by the ol’ on-paper scenario, the Wild had the edge with an 11-7-3 record compared to the Canucks near the bottom of the Pacific Division. But the Wild haven’t exactly done things the conventional way. Not like that should be any surprise.
This one was frustrating because the Wild were in decent shape up 2-0 and with a shot advantage, too. Then there’s the four goals. Then the high of tying it up, before the low of giving up the winner late in the game. But hey, the Wild didn’t give up an empty netter. So there’s that.
Add it to the list of weird results for the Wild. At least this one didn’t give two points to a division rival, even if a conference foe isn’t exactly great either. The Wild started November with a 2-1 loss to Buffalo, following that up with a 1-0 loss to Colorado. They also lost 3-2 to Philly, another 1-0 loss (Calgary) and another defeat at the hands of the Avs, 3-2.
This is also the same Wild team that is 2-0 against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins, outscoring them 10-4.
I’ve always been curious about how teams will lose the games they shouldn’t and win the ones they shouldn’t. It’s what keeps thing interesting, really. If teams always beat up on the lowly opponents they were supposed to, it wouldn’t be as much fun and frustrating to follow them.
So, we always just come back for more.
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