For one stunning evening, the Minnesota Wild loved all of the luck in opposition to top-of-the-line groups within the league after they trounced the Colorado Avalanche 8-3 on Wednesday. They hoped to take that momentum into Friday’s matchup with a St. Louis Blues workforce coming off their first win after a seven-game shedding streak. The Wild have been scorching shooters with robust goaltending, and the Blues needed to be feeling determined to keep away from falling additional behind within the playoff race.
Seems, this freaky Friday was reverse day.
The Blues owned the motion in all elements of the sport from the drop of the puck, scoring early and sometimes in a 7-1 shellacking of the Wild.
If the Wild sport play was to attempt to ease Kahkonen again into the motion early after a few tough begins, the mission was a failure. The rookie goaltender was hung utterly out to dry simply over a minute in, as Robert Thomas discovered Zach Sanford on a 2-on-1, leaving the Blues ahead with as open internet as you could find and Kahkonen with no probability. Sanford buried it, and the Blues have been up 1-0 early.
5 minutes later, the Blues struck once more when Vladamir Tarasenko fought off just a few checks and located Jaden Schwartz on their own. Schwartz wristed a puck over Kahkonen’s shoulder for a two-goal lead.
On the following shift, the Wild gave followers a second to imagine that they may flip issues round when Zach Parise scored his first objective in 14 video games, cleansing up a Carson Soucy rebound. The Wild have been on the board and perhaps, simply perhaps, again within the sport.
Nevertheless it was to not be. Kahkonen’s wheels got here utterly off the wagon, and the usually stout Wild protection did their rookie goaltender zero favors, permitting the Blues all types of high-danger probabilities and odd-man rushes. The possession numbers and shot totals weren’t lopsided, however anybody watching the sport is aware of that the Blues merely regarded like the higher workforce.
Little further evaluation is required. The highlights inform the story.
The Blues regained their two-goal lead with 4:37 left within the first, and by no means regarded again.
3:07 left within the first, Blues 4-1.
Issues didn’t get any higher within the second interval. Solely a minute in, the Blues saved the objectives coming.
Down 4, the Wild earned the primary energy play of the sport, but it surely was the Blues that capitalized. Victor Rask had an terrible turnover on the offensive blueline, and Ryan O’Reilly was off to the races. 6-1 Blues.
St. Louis made it 7-1 on a delayed penalty due to Justin Faulk off a go from Robert Thomas.
The third interval was simply as futile, because the Wild had no pictures by the primary 10 minutes. With 9 minutes and 43 merciful ticks till the top of the sport, Jake Walman scored St. Louis’ eighth objective, tying the Wild’s franchise file for many objectives allowed in a single sport.
Within the waning minutes of the sport, the Blues etched their title within the Wild’s historical past books, scoring a Wild-worst ninth objective allowed.
Russo’s tweet says all of it.
8 goal-margin is probably the most lopsided loss in Wild historical past
9 objectives in opposition to is probably the most in a Wild sport
9 objectives allowed by Kahkonen probably the most in Wild sport
— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) April 10, 2021
On an evening the place Parise truly had considered one of his stronger video games of a disappointing season, all the remainder of the workforce forgot to indicate up. The Wild higher have an actual quick reminiscence, as they’ll be in St. Louis on Saturday to finish the back-to-back, after which host the Blues at Xcel on Monday.
Pictures, Pictures, Pictures
The shot whole by two intervals wasn’t as lopsided as you’d count on in a then 7-1 sport at 29-22 in favor of the Blues, however the third interval solely exacerbated what was already a dominant efficiency. Regardless of having fun with an influence play within the early a part of the third, the Wild didn’t handle their first shot till properly after the 10-minute mark, and solely added three extra to their whole on the evening within the remaining body. Ultimately, the Wild have been as soon as once more outshot badly, 38-25, and have been out high-danger chanced 9-4.
Is the Wild energy play lastly for actual?
I stated within the preview that “I’d accept one thing apart from ‘laughed at,’ when in search of a time period to explain the Wild energy play. And boy, you couldn’t assist however chuckle as the person benefit, together with each different facet of the Wild’s sport, got here crashing again to Earth. Minnesota managed just one shot over two energy performs, and allowed St. Louis to attain shorthanded, a feat that the Wild had allowed no different workforce to attain in 2021.
Talking of file feats…
Is it time for KAAPS LOCK to return?
Yeah, no. And contemplating the record-worst consequence tonight (and the way coach Dean Evason dealt with his rookie goaltender), don’t count on to see him again between the pipes in a bit.
Now, as talked about earlier than, the Wild defenders did little to assist their netminder, as they spent a lot of the sport both chasing round or staring blankly on the Blues forwards, Kahkonen had fairly just a few objectives (particularly later within the sport) the place the imaginative and prescient, the angles or the puck-handling skill simply wasn’t there.
And I get that Evason would need Talbot contemporary for sport two tomorrow evening, however leaving your rookie goalie out to dry to the tune of 9 objectives in opposition to would possibly do far more long run hurt than tiring out your primary within the third interval of a blowout.