I didn't get the game on until there were only 4 minutes left in regulation, so I can't comment on any of the (apparently abundant) action leading up to that point.
The Grease hammered out a 5-4 shootout victory when Ales Hemsky - who had apparently used up all the other moves in his arsenal in undressing the Wild for two goals in regulation - scored by losing control of the puck.
From what I did see, both teams were playing for OT by the 16 minute mark of the third. The Wild had a couple dandy chances in OT, but Roli the goalie and his left post had something to say about them.
In the shootout...sheesh...the Wild are just not a good shootout team. Nummelin is money. I say that if we're comfortable dressing Boogey but only playing him 1 minute a game, then why not do the same with Nummelin just to have him around in case we go to a shootout. Mikko - who is also usually money (must be a Finnish thing) - maybe thought Roli knew all his best moves so he changed it up, and that rarely works. And Belanger has apparently been watching a Gaby's Greatest Shootout Goals video because he just skated in and missed the net high.
On the other end, Harding - who was 1-0 in the shootout theretofore, I believe - got deked enough that he couldn't get his long left leg back to stop the first one, learned his lesson and made the same save on the second one, and then allowed the stinker by Hemsky.
While I'd prefer we just get back to winning games in regulation, I wonder if there might not be some shootout practice in the near future.
Sheppard got his first NHL goal.
For a game recap, check out Mike Russo's work here.
The Wild did resign Brent Burns to a 4-year, $14.2M contract that will keep him with the team through 2011-2012. The cap hit looks like $3.55M annually which, if Burns continues to progress on the same trajectory he's been on since the start of last season, will be cheap sooner rather than later.
CHICKEN LITTLE SAYS: Sounds like a better overall effort, but where's the killer instinct?
POLLYANNA SAYS: 7-1-2 through the first 10 games is a very good start. Lets say 100 points gets you into the playoffs this season. The Wild secured 16% of those points in only 12.2% of the season.
BOTTOM LINE: One more point.
STUD: I'm really in no position to say.
DUD: Ditto stud.
But remember JL hates the shootout so there may be no practicing it. Hards look on his face after that goal tricked in has priceless. He was ashamed and torqued. Hards really does have the longest legs I think I have seen on a goalie. He seems to be able to have his skates touching both posts nicely and comfortably when he is in a butterfly. He is definitely better than Backs it at the shootout though. He at least stopped 1.
Good point. Lets just keep winning games in regulation then!
It's kind of sad that one goalie is better in the shootout than the other because he stopped one.
I'm not really that worried about it.
Has Backs stopped any in the shootouts he has been in? Hards has done fairly well in the past for the few he has been in. That was the one area Fernandez was fantastic at. We just really need to keep put them away in regulation or OT if nothing else.
"And Belanger has apparently been watching a Gaby's Greatest Shootout Goals video because he just skated in and missed the net high."
Ahahaha. It'd be a lot funnier if it weren't probably true.
You're right, it must be a Finnish thing, do they have shootouts in Finland's leagues maybe?
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