Today has been one of those weird days. Actually, not just today, it's been several weird days. Normally, I work my customer service job from home. I love it, and even better it saves me a lot of money on gas. Yet, starting last week, the computer my employer provides decided it was going to go on the fritz. I was told that a new computer would be in my home call center after 11am on Friday, so I went in to work my shift. Guess what, no computer. So then I had to work Saturday's shift and today's shift in the call center as opposed from the comfort of home. Then there's been the weather here in the Upper Midwest. Instead of feeling like spring has sprung, many of us have felt like winter was still upon us. I have some friends in Australia and New Zealand, and they're having their own weather oddities, in that instead of feeling like fall was starting, it still felt like summer had them in its grip. My weird days continued into this afternoon. Because I knew I wasn't going to be home when the game started, I set the DVR to record the game. On my on-screen guide, I would join the game in progress. By the time I got settled, there were just about five minutes left in the first, and I could not see the game. For a while, I thought I was going to be writing a rant against Fox Sports North for subjecting Wild fans to Twins baseball and Timberwolves basketball. I couldn't understand why those game would effect my viewing pleasure, nor could I understnad that other fans I know could watch the game. Seems that I had a completely ditzy moment. Instead of my on-screen guide set to "All Channels" it was set to "My Channels." The Wild game I saw on the guide was for the HD feed. I was thinking that there was no standard definition feed because it wasn't listed like the other games on tonight. Once I realized it said "My Feed" I clicked a button on the remote, and low and behold, there was the Wild game. So I missed the first period for absolutely no reason. So because of that, I'm afraid you're not going to get anything about the first period. I just hope you got to watch it when I did not.
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1st Period Thoughts: I'd have thoughts if I had been able to watch it. So you will just have to imagine my thoughts for the night.
2nd Period Thoughts: You really begin to wonder how things are going to go, when just a minute and a half into the period Jason Zucker takes a lazy penalty. It was truly the laziest of lazy penalties, and for a speedy player like Zucker, it's unforgiveable. Thankfully, his teammates were able to kill his mistake. When lazy penalties happen, you have to worry that the entire team is feeling too comfortable with the lead in a one-goal game. Thankfully for the Wild players, coaches, and fans, they demonstrated that they can play much better than they had. The hard work continued to pay off, when Jason Pominville was able to tap in a goal, that would make things 2-0 for Minnesota. And for an interesting factoid, tonight's goal by Pominville means he has now scored a goal against every team in the league (well except Buffalo for obvious reasons), as Calgary was the last team he needed to score on. They would need to continue to push themselves and keep the pressure on Calgary. The Wild would end the period on the power play and would start the period on the power play, as Mark Giordano drew blood when his stick ended up in Charlie Coyle's face. From what I've gathered from what I read about the first period, the second period was clearly a vast improvement. However, there's still 20 mintues left, and that could be the Wild's downfall.
3rd Period Thoughts: The Wild would start the period with the power play, including time leftover from the first of the minor of the double minor. Unfortunately, they were unable to score a goal in the remaining time of the first power play. They were able to put pressure and get some scoring chances as well as the important shots on goal during the man advantage. Just when you think that Minnesota just might be able to continue to play as they did during the second, Calgary was able to get their first goal of the night from Jiri Hudler. I'll admit, I had the feeling that here comes the downfall of tonight's success so far. Just when you think they're going to give up, a goal comes from the unlikely source of Pierre-Marc Bouchard. Goals like that need to happen more often to this team. And then, when you think, "it would be really nice if they would continue to score goals" you get a second goal from Pominville. Once again, Minnesota would be challenged to respond, as Ben Hanowski scored his first NHL goal to pull Calgary back to within two goals. Minnesota would need to refrain from sloppy or lazy play. While it wasn't a goal, Torrey Mitchell showed his wheels by beating out not just one, but two Calgary skaters on an icing call. Minnesota was then able to keep the puck moving and get some scoring chances. There are times when I simply do not understand the Wild. With just about 40 or so seconds left, Zach Parise had the opportunity to just clear the puck out of the Minnesota zone, instead he tried to pass the puck to Pominville to help him get a hat trick, since the Calgary net was open. Instead of Pominville getting the puck, the Flames intercepted the puck that eventually became a Sven Baertschi goal. The Wild would end up winning 4-3, but one could argue that this game should have never been this close. Yet at the same time, you can say you saw a Flames team that refuses to simply give up this season.
~ Wild lineup tonight is as follows: Matt Cullen, Mikko Koivu, Devin Setoguchi, Zach Parise, Jason Zucker, Torrey Mitchell, Kyle Brodziak, Cal Clutterbuck, Mike Rupp, Jason Pominville, Charlie Coyle, Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Clayton Stoner, Brett Clark, Ryan Suter, Jonas Brodin, Jared Spurgeon, and Todd Gilbert. Darcy Kuemper backed up Niklas Backstrom.
~ The 3 Stars of the Game were: 1st Star, Jason Pominville; 2nd Star, Ben Hanowski; 3rd Star, Matt Cullen.
~ Attendance was 19,289 at ScotiaBank Saddledome.
Wild Prospect Report:
F - Adam Gilmour (Muskegon, USHL) ~ The Lumberjacks are priming themselves for the post season and Wild fans are going to get an idea of what they can expect from the Massachusetts-native when the games become more important. Muskegon got involved in a track meet as the Lumberjacks fell 6-5 at the hands of the Green Bay Gamblers. Gilmour had an assist with 2 shots on goal and was a +1. The 6'3", 187lbs has 19 goals, 47 points in 64 games.