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Wilderness Walk: Paradoxical Feelings

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The Wild outgun the Blues but lose in overtime, recaps of the other playoff games from last night, and a JEE sighting.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-St. Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Wild fell to the St. Louis Blues during overtime in Game 1 of their playoff series despite controlling play for the vast majority of the game and shelling Jake Allen with 52 shots on goal. Last I saw, the Wild held a 15-5 advantage in scoring chances too. Devan Dubnyk played well, posting a .923 save percentage and neither goal was really on him. For a detailed summary of the game, take a look at Joe Bouley’s write up.

For me, I am simultaneously encouraged and discouraged by last night’s game. First, the obvious negative is that the Wild lost the first game of the series, even with the home advantage. That sucks. Jake Allen, despite serving up juicy rebounds like a short order fry cook, made several really nice saves and his good positioning ensured that even the pucks he couldn’t track didn’t go in. The Blues’ defensemen often used their size well to clear out rebound in the crease and limit dangerous second and third attempts. On the positive side of things, the Wild were absolutely the better team on the ice. They got more than twice the number of shots than the Blues. They didn’t let the frustration of Allen stonewalling them tear down their composure. Apart from a couple slip ups (that the Blues unfortunately capitalized on) they played like the early season version of themselves. If they maintain a shot advantage like that, it’s hard to see how the Blues can possibly steal three more games.

So let’s all take a moment to be disappointed that the Wild lost, marvel at the paradoxes inherent to sports, and get excited for the next game. I trust that Bruce Boudreau, Zach Parise, and company have something good in store for us in Game 2.


Wild News

Wild fall to Blues 2-1 on Edmunson goal in double overtime
After being forced to wait for what felt like an eternity for Game 1 of their first-round playoff series to start, the Wild had to wait nearly 60 minutes to break through. In the end, it wasn't enough.

By that much: Wild puts 52 shots on net, can't convert in Game 1 OT loss - StarTribune.com
In the second-longest game in franchise history, the Wild put a team record 52 shots on St. Louis goalie Jake Allen but only got one goal. Zach Parise's dramatics forced overtime but the Blues prevailed.

Brian Murphy: Relax, Wild fans; it's way too early for fatalism
The MN Wild fell victim to the Blues in Game 1 on Wednesday, but there was too much to like about their game to believe this will be over quickly.

Blues, 'have to be better,' Mike Yeo says after beating Wild in Game 1
Blues coach Mike Yeo toed a line between celebration from a Game 1 overtime win and disappointment from being outshot 52-26 by the MN Wild.


Recaps

Edmundson scores overtime winner as Blues top Wild in Game 1 - Sportsnet.ca
Joel Edmundson scored the overtime winner as the St. Louis Blues defeated the Minnesota Wild, 2-1, in Game 1 of their first-round series.

Lundqvist makes 31 saves as Rangers shut out Canadiens in Game 1 - Sportsnet.ca
Henrik Lundqvist made 31 saves and Tanner Glass scored in the first period as the New York Rangers shut out the Montreal Canadiens 2-0 on Wednesday night in Game 1 of their first round playoff series.

Melker Karlsson scores OT winner as Sharks top Oilers in Game 1 - Sportsnet.ca
Melker Karlsson scored the overtime winner as the San Jose Sharks edged the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Wednesday night in Game 1 of their first round Western Conference playoff series.

Penguins begin Cup defence with Game 1 win over Blue Jackets - Sportsnet.ca
The Pittsburgh Penguins overcame the loss of goaltender Matt Murray in pre-game warm ups to defeat the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1 in Game 1.

Costly giveaways come back to haunt Senators in Game 1 loss to Bruins - Sportsnet.ca
The Senators had plenty of opportunities to bury the Bruins in Game 1 but couldn't capitalize on their opportunities.


Off the Trail

Five post-deadline additions who could contribute in the post-season | The Hockey News
The trade deadline isn't the last chance for post-season bound teams to add to their lineup, and these five late-season additions could end up paying dividends in the playoffs.

Not Too Long a Weight; Isles Pick Doug
The Islanders named Doug Weight their new head coach; but there are still many questions to be answered.

So you want to win the Stanley Cup? Here's how | The Hockey News
The Penguins, Blackhawks and Kings have won seven of the past eight Cups. What’s their championship formula?

If your team didn’t make the playoffs, cheer for these veterans instead | The Hockey News
If you're a fan of one of the 14 teams who missed the post-season, you might be looking for a new rooting interest for the next two months. Why not cheer for a veteran who has a chance at his first Stanley Cup?