Yeah even strength scoring is always their problem. Definitely underrated. Columbus played last night so hopefully they're legs will be gone. However they did lose pretty good so they may be pissed off.
Tidbits...things to watch for tonight based off of the previous game.
- The appearance and disappearance of the forecheck. Notice how the Wild were in control of the game in the 1st and 3rd periods because of the forecheck, and how Edmonton got back into the game when we couldn't establish it in the 2nd.
- The continued improved play of the D as a whole; based off Rick Wilson's system of reads.
- Will special teams success carry over...more emphasis on not taking penalties, while trying to draw them for a red hot PP?
- Cal Clutterbuck's presence in the offensive zone; he looks to have a conscious effort to be more involved.
- Brent Burns vs. Rick Nash
- Finally...where does Guillaume Latendresse end up? With Cullen and Havlat, or Brodziak and Staubitz?
again and again and again...don't try to turn clutterbuck into an offensive weapon. just let him be that wrecking ball that separates the puck from the carrier and gets the occasional shot on net instead of throwing him out there for the cycling game with our playmakers.
Here are some things the Wild Media Guide thought you might like to know:
1. Minnesota currently holds a four game home win streak versus Columbus and owns an impressive 11-1-1 mark in its last 13 home meetings against the Blue Jackets.
2. In three starts against Columbus last season Niklas Backstrom posted a stellar .941 SV% and 1.68 GAA.
3. The Wild currently leads the NHL in both power play goals (7) and power play percentage (43.8%).
4. The Wild has scored first in 3 straight games for first time since Mar. 12-16, 2010.
5. The Wild has scored seven of its eight goals on the power play. Last season over first three games, six of eight came with a man advantage.
6. On Thursday the Wild went 4-6 on the power play. It was the Wild’s seventh game all-time with four or more PPG game at home. The most recent occurrence was Feb. 14, 2010 vs. VAN.
7. With his third period tally on Thursday Matt Cullen became the first Minnesota native to score in a Wild home opener since Darby Hendrickson recorded the first ever Wild goal at Xcel Energy Center.
8. In the Wild’s home opener on Thursday, Mikko Koivu recorded his 15th career 3-point game. His last came Mar. 14, 2010 vs. STL.
9. Since the lockout, the Wild is 24-5-1 in October home games, including a 19-3-1 mark the last five seasons.
10. Lou Nanne will be signing copies of his new book “A Passion to Win” at tonight’s game. Since 2007-2008 when Nanne’s previous book, “Minnesota North Stars: History and Memories with Lou Nanne” was first released, Nanne boasts an impressive Wild record of 8-2-3 when hosting book signings at Xcel Energy Center.
I like clutterbuck but he shouldn't be on the second line. Richards puts him there because he had a hat trick against a terrible Finnish team. He has done nothing on that line against nhl caliber teams. Bring back Guillaume! Hoping for a Havlat breakout tonight. Wooo. Score some points Marty sheesh.
Sorry I'm from outta town. Its on FSN for me . Going to miss out on all the fun tonight, have to record the game as I have a big Giants party to attend. Look forward to reading all the posts though. Go Wild!
I should be here and posting for the most part. Depends on how much a pain in the.... the little one plans on being tonight. I've got my fingers crossed for him to fall asleep early tonight. Doubt I'll be that lucky, though.