No, I don't understand this team either. They put up 30 shots and three goals when for the last week they have looked like a pee wee team offensively. Sure, the defensive game left something to be desired, giving up 45 shots, but Josh Harding was fabulous tonight, keeping all but Thomas Vanek at bay, but not many teams in the NHL can do that.
Nice to see the veteran leadership show up in a big way tonight. A goal for Andrew Brunette, in typical Bruno fashion, on a tip-in. And Owen Nolan showed Steve Montador what happens when he messes with the Irish God of War. Not only did Nolan give Montador a healthy beatdown, but he embarrassed the Buffalo d-man, tearing his name plate right off his sweater, showing Montador that he just doesn't belong in the same league.
Ok, so, it doesn't really matter at this point, but it's good to see the Wild look solid and get a nice win against really good team in the Buffalo Sabres. Again, makes you wonder how good the Wild would be if they were in the East.
Please visit Die By The Blade for the enemy perspective.
Hockey Wilderness Three:
- Josh Harding (43 saves, 1 A)
- Thomas Vanek (2 G)
- Guillaume Latendresse (1 G)
Five Questions to Answer:
- Will anyone else get a little misty watching Thomas Vanek and remember the days when the Gophers were awesome? From our dear friend schleske: "to answer question # 1, I flipped to see the gopher’s score.. and then saw vanek score. Siiigh."
- Can the Wild get to Patrick Lalime? Would the Wild have won if Ryan Miller were in net? Who cares?
- Will Guillaume Latendresse be able to go full-speed tonight, or will he show signs of the injury last night? Nice goal on only 13:52 TOI. He took advantage of his time. I love, love, love watching this kid play, and it was nice to see him score again. I can't wait to see him locked up for a nice long-term contract (please Fletch?)
- Did the Wild even get tired enough last night to have an effect tonight? I don't know if they were tired or not, but they certainly stemmed the tide of an impressive offensive onslaught by Buffalo.
- Should the Wild just go ahead and put Niklas Backstrom to pasture for the rest of the season? I really think they should. No need to risk anything at all with Nik.