This is shaping up to be an epic series.
I consider myself a relatively savvy hockey consumer, and yet I have to admit I've been on the edge of my seat in each of these games. That old, familiar clenching of the gut. Imagine what it's like down on the benches?
Anyway, the script is familiar to those of you who have been following this series. Solid action back and forth, Avs score first, both goalies playing well, Wild mount a 3rd period, OT ensues.
There were a couple wrinkles in this one, such as Rolston's shorty that temporarily gave the Wild the lead in the 3rd. Then Voros (who was maybe a tad overzealous on a few occasions last night) knocked Brunette into Backstrom and Sakic (who else?) tied it for Colorado. Frankly I was surprised that Voros saw ice again in the game, and I suspect he might not have had it been a regular season game.
The Wild is using a holistic, comprehensive, team approach to pissing off Forsberg, and it seems to be working. I mean, anytime Sean Hill gets Foppa in the box it's a win for the Wild.
The other major story line is Gaborik's continued absence from the score sheet. But, while he didn't register an assist or a goal last night, he WAS a factor - particularly in overtime when he was buzzing. To the extent that draws attention from the Avs, one can certainly make the case that he is contributing to the overall effort...though it would obviously be nicer if he contributed on the score sheet as well.
So, the empty, used banana bags lie discarded in a heap on the dressing room floor, and these two teams - so evenly matched - prepare to rush once more unto the breach, dear friends, this evening.
CHICKEN LITTLE SAYS: Gotta put one away in regulation and save some energy!
POLLYANNA SAYS: Playoffs? Overtime?? Not much better in sports.
BOTTOM LINE: The Wild put themselves in a great position here. Now they just have to take advantage of it.
STUD: Mikko is just incredible. He's doing everything, at both ends of the rink, and doing it with aplomb.
DUD: Hard to point to one, but I would like to see more from SRV in general.