Wild win 5-4 in OT tonite, in dramatic fashion. The game was really a mixed bag. I don't remember a game where the Wild scored such pretty goals. Frustratingly, the Wild gave up 2 2-goal leads, and were forced into the OT by a charging Nashville squad. Looked like we were destined for a shootout, but Demo and Gabby pulled off a pretty 2 on 1 to win it.
All 5 goals were skill goals. Here's a quick recap...
- Pterri Nummelin with a breakaway all alone from the blueline thanks to a pretty pass from Eric Belanger. Nummelin scored on one of his patented shootout moves.
- Mark Parrish on a beautiful give-and-go from Marian Gaborik.
- Pierre-Marc Bouchard with the move of the year. On the power play, PMB skated into the zone and all 4 Preds closed in on him. He stickhandles the puck between 2 of them and goes in on Preds G Chris Mason all alone. He beats him with a top-shelf backhander. Then his price tag went up to sign him this summer.
- Marian Gaborik, with a delayed penalty being called on Nashville, came on the ice as the extra attacker. PMB was down low and found Gabby streaking in. Gabby put a little deke on Mason and buried it.
- With about 10 seconds left in overtime, Pavol Demitra picked up the puck at center ice and started in against 1 Preds defender. Marian Gaborik came out of nowhere, streaking in for a 2 on 1. Demo lifted a pretty saucer pass over the Preds D, and Gabby one-timed it past Mason for the win, with only 4.4 seconds left.
Check out the highlights here.
- At least Eric Belanger factored in the scoring. He made the long pass to Nummelin for the Wild's 1st goal. Hopefully it's a sign he's ready to actually score a goal again.
- If you saw Michael Russo on the Wild Live after the game on FSN, how come he looks so much different from his picture on his Star Tribune blog?
- The Wild seemed to get a little nonchalant after they were up 3-1 and 4-2. That led to untimely penatlies, which led to a tie game and overtime.
- Shoddy officiating tonite. Two of the Preds goals could have been waived off, and there were a few penalties I would have called that were not called.
- Backstrom could have been better. When's Harding going to play again?
The Fight to Hang the 1st Banner
The stars aligned tonite in the NW division. Wild get 2 pts, Colorado lost 2-1 to Chicago and Calgary lost 4-2 to Anaheim. With 23 games left for all 4 teams that matter in the NW, the Wild are now up 6 points on Vancouver and Calgary, and 7 on Colorado.
Next on the Docket - Canucks @ Wild - Tues 2-19-08
Another big Northwest division matchup Tuesday nite. They just keep coming. The Wild are rolling right now, and the Canucks aren't. Let's hope that continues. Wild 2 Canucks 1