Despite leading by three goals and dominating for two periods, the Wild allowed five third-period goals dropping a "gimmie" at the Garden. Minnesota is still looking to score on the man advantage, as its now 0-24. They had TWO five minute majors last night. Andrew Brunette was brought in to awake the sleeping giant of our power play, well Bruno, ITS NOT (BLEEPING) WORKING. Not trying to call for Bruno's head here by any means, it's just confusing that a team that has been so damn good on 5v5 but can not close on the man advantage. Last night reminded of the first two games against the #WhyNotUS crew last year. The Wild had it in that bag and somehow just gave up in the final 15 minutes.
The Wild were pushed around last night, cheap shots were obviously thrown, but this is something that may be a concern moving forward. The Wild really dont have many players that just throw their weight or fists around. Matt Cooke to a degree but he's a changed player now guises. (winky face) The Wild are much deeper team now and that can clearly be demonstrated by Jason Zucker's team leading five goals while playing exclusively on the 4th line. This means the Wild are going to get pushed around a lot. With the recent depth of scoring and the loss of Clayton Stoner, someone is going to have step up and throw the weight right back.
At one point last night, Jonas Brodin, Zach Parise amd Erik Haula all left the game because of injury. Both Brodin & Parise returned but Haula did not. We probalby wont see Haula tonight which means Kyle Brodziak will dress for the first time in five games.
Thomas Vanek remains the subject of criticism, as he's remained goal-less this season. The Noogie did a great piece on him today and you should check it out. Vanek is one of the streakiest scorers in the game and a little beans may be all what he needs. In 55 career games Vanek has 62 points, including 30 goals and its his most points versus any NHL team. Niklas Backstrom has got to be getting the start tonight since its back-back games and the way Kuemper finished last night. Doesn't hurt either that he is 4-0-1 with a 0.98 GAA, a .969 SV% and two shutouts in five starts against the Bruins. In fact, Minnesota loves them some beans! Since the Wilds birth, they own a career record of 11-2-1 against the Bruins. Beans are the magical fruit, so lets put last night behind us and get back in the win column! Check back at 5:45 for the gamethread.