For the second time in as many games, the Minnesota Wild have won in a shootout, beating the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 on Sunday night.
“Our history the last couple years against them, it leaves a bad taste in your mouth,” Charlie Coyle told the Star Tribune. “It’s not hard to get up for these games. You always want to take down the best.”
Minnesota got out to an early lead, with Erik Haula scoring 50 seconds into the second period and Nino Niederreiter making it 2-0 six minutes later.
But Andrew Shaw and Richard Panik scored within five minutes of Niederreiter’s goal, tying the game up in the second period. Minnesota out-shot Chicago 16-7 in the third, but could not find the back of the net.
In overtime the Wild blew a 4-on-3 power play, which could be costly because Minnesota is three regulation/overtime wins behind the Colorado Avalanche — the first tiebreaker if the two teams finish with the same amount of points.
Zach Parise missed a wide-open net with the man advantage, but Devan Dubnyk kept Minnesota in the game with a poke check to thwart a Panik breakaway late in the overtime period.
“Going through (overtime), your goalie has to be on top of his game,” Haula told the Pioneer Press.
Coyle scored the lone goal in the shootout, as Dubnyk fended off Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Artemi Panarin to seal the win for Minnesota. The Wild have now won six games in a row against the Blackhawks dating back to last season.
“They’re the Stanley Cup champions, so you better be ready or you’re going to end up walking away with no points,” Torchetti told the Star Tribune. “You’ve got to be disciplined and focused for a 60-minute game. We were, and we’ve had back to-back nights of it.”[Star Tribune, Pioneer Press]