Saturday, October 24, 2009

Game #9: Blues 3, Wild 1

By Wild Road Tripper

Minnesota Wild forward Andrew Brunette said it best following last night's 3-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues at Scottrade Center:

"Every game it seems we're down a goal in the first five minutes. It makes it tough psychologically."

No kidding, Bruno.

In a game where not only did the Wild give up the first goal for the seventh time this season, but lost Kim Johnsson in the process, thanks to a crushing check by Minnesota-native David Backes in the first period, the Wild again failed to answer the call for the entire game. They did rebound and played markedly better as the evening went on, but by the end it was once again too little, too late.

Leader: David Perron. Head and shoulders (and occasionally, elbows, but we ain't sayin') above everyone else.

Lagger: Nick Schultz. Once again, his lack of experience with aggressive forechecking showed as the Blues game winner was stolen from him.

Stud: Backes. Pieces of Johnsson's equipment were reportedly seen around Scott AFB this morning.

Dud: James Sheppard. Does his fan mail come addressed as 'occupant' for the way he is playing right now?

OK, assembled multitude, it's your turn:

Chicken Little: Do I really need to say anything? The record speaks volumes. 2 and 7...

Pollyanna: At least they kept it kinda close!

Bottom Line: Most fans blew this one off before the season started. St Louis is a good, young, hard-skating team. Too bad the Wild blew it off, also, after that disasterous first period.

If you're going: Another 'green evening' with the third jerseys.

Next: vs. Carolina, tonight (Saturday, Oct. 24), 7:00 PM Central (8:00 PM Eastern). Xcel Energy Center. (TV: FSNorth, FSCarolinas; XM Ch. 241)


KiPA - Kevin in PA said...

This might just be a coincidence, but Backes is the guy who hit Gonchar on the play that broke Gonchar's wrist.

WRT - Wild Road Tripper said...

Kevin: David Backes is not a dirty player. He's just big and solid, and he's learning to use his body more, especially in the opponent's zone. He will be a classic power forward if JD and the Blues can keep him in St. Louis.

KiPA - Kevin in PA said...

Whether he's dirty or not is debatable (he did have 165 PIMs last year, and several games where he picked up at least 10 PIMs), but I agree, the hit on Gonchar wasn't dirty. The Pens coaching staff said the same. He just finished his check. I didn't see the hit on Johnsson. It was just weird that in two straight games, a check by Backes results in a serious injury to a defenseman.