Two numbers you need to know .762 and .899. That’s Devan Dubnyk’s save percentage versus the Jets in Sunday’s 5-4 loss after making 16 saves on just 21 shots faced. The second number is Dubnyk’s save percentage in his last 10 games. Those numbers aren’t going to get it done against the Blackhawks, against the Sharks, or the Jets or the Avalanche. For as great as Dubnyk was over much of the season, it hasn’t been pretty the last ten games. And it was downright ugly against the Jets.
The Jets scored on their first shot on goal. Andrew Copp got the goal. That was followed up two shots later when Adam Lowry scored through Dubnyk’s five hole. Winnipeg added another tally when Ben Chiarot scored his second goal of the season as the Jets were all about spoiling Eric Staal’s 1,000th game of his decorated career. The Wild were crap in the first period. It just was not a period requisite of a team that had led the Western Conference since January up until mid March.
Things got worse in the second period before they got better. Dustin Byfuglien scored on a back-hander from the right circle. Then Minnesota found their legs and started stringing a a number of good shifts together. Charlie Coyle would finally break through Connor Hellebuyck with a shot over the blocker. Zach Parise made a great play along the end boards on Mark Stuart to force a turnover. He gathered the puck and fed Coyle for the tally. It was followed up with a Mikael Granlund power play goal. The power play didn’t look good to start as they struggled with a Jets penalty kill that pressured the puck carrier. But the one time the Jets laid off, Mikko Koivu was given time to find the stick of Granlund in the blue paint to cut the lead to two.
Minnesota outshot the Jets 21-5 and out-attempted them by a mile with a 31-9 margin at 5-on-5. Chris Stewart, who fought Chris Thorburn in the first period, was able to slide one through the whickets of Hellebuyck to but the deficit to one. Not to be outdone, Stewart scores again by wrapping the puck around and sneaking the puck under the right pad with 12.6 seconds left in the period. Minnesota came all the way back from a 4-0 deficit to tie the game at four.
You’d think that the Wild would have all the momentum after scoring four unanswered with a full 20 minutes to play and snap a four game losing streak dead in its tracks. But the Jets and Josh Morrissey thought otherwise. At 12:47 of the third, Dubnyk couldn’t find a Morrissey shot from the point that found its way through a screen out front for the go-ahead goal.
Minnesota threw everything at Michael Hutchinson in the final three minutes. Byfuglien caught the puck and threw the puck down the ice like he was playing floor hockey. you can’t do that and it gave the Wild a late power play. With Dubnyk pulled, it was a 6-on-4 advantage. Coyle missed an open net, Matt Dumba got robbed point-blank by an out-stretched pad. Minnesota couldn’t get the equalizer and dropped its fifth game row.
Bruce Boudreau was not happy. He was beat red in the post-game presser and answered just one question before storming off.
Boudreau: "Listen, we stunk in the 1st, we better come back in the 2nd. Resilient? You make us sound like we're good- I'm done."#hockeyguy— KFAN1003 (@KFAN1003) March 20, 2017
Sums up the feelings of just about everyone following this team.
UPDATE: Here is the full video of the Boudreau press conference