Friday, March 6, 2009

Game #63: Wild 4, Sharks 3 (OT)

(Revised and Updated)

The best comeback of the season is the game nobody saw, as the Minnesota Wild stunned the Western Conference-leading San Jose Sharks by a 4-3 OT count late Thursday night at HP Pavilion in San Jose.

After Joe Pavelski scored his second of the evening for the Sharks, who were 26-3-3 at home prior to the game, MAB and PMB scored 1:28 apart late in the second period to bring the Wild back off the deck and in it at 3-2 going into a third period which couldn't have turned out better, as Marek Zidlicky's clearing shot from his own side of the center red line bounced twice and went under the glove and past San Jose backup goalie Brian Boucher, tying the score at 3-all, and sending panicky Sharks' fans scrambling for their PDA's.

Late in the OT, Brent Burns' centering pass from near the corner to Mikko Koivu connected, and all the Captain had to do was slap it in for the game-winner, only 14 seconds away from the shootout. The Wild now are one point out of eighth place in the West with 67 points, and two games left in their marathon six-game road trip.

(We found the multitude Friday headed for the Garlic Capitol of the World, nearby Gilroy, en route to Southern California for this weekend's games...)

Chicken Little: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Don't celebrate just yet. That's only one game of their last five they've won. And there's still two to go on this road trip. Garlic fries, anyone?

Pollyanna: The Wild spotted the best team in the West a 3-goal lead and came all the way back to win. Only the second time in team history that feat has occurred (Other time: Nov. 16, 2006, at Nashville; Wild won in shootout, 7-6. WRT was there). The boys finally took the wake-up call and ran with it. Keep it going! (No thanks to the garlic fries, CL. How 'bout some garlic ice cream?)

Stud: Koivu is the easy (and obvious) choice, but on a night like this when keeping a forecheck was the key to victory, the 'Stud' title goes to Colton Gillies, as he really stepped up his game after Owen Nolan did his best volcano imitation on the Wild bench. (Talk about it's not easy being green, Owen. Eeewwww.) Gillies pulled double-shifts during most of the last two periods after Nolan started blowing beets.

Dud: Was there one after the mid-way point of the game? I don't think so. Everyone stepped up.

Next: At Los Angeles, Saturday, Mar. 7, 3:00 PM Central (1:00 PM Pacific) Time, STAPLES Center (TV: FSN (includes FSWisconsin), FSPrime Ticket; XM Ch. 207)


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