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The Sports Daily > Crease and Assist
2017 NHL Playoffs: Minnesota Wild vs. St. Louis Blues 4/16/2017 @ 3:00PM CST at Scottrade Center

Blues Lead Series 2-0

Minnesota Wild

1.00 Goals For Per Game (14th in the NHL Playoffs)

2.00 Goals Against Per Game (6th in the NHL Playoffs)

16.7% Power Play (7th in the NHL Playoffs)

100% Penalty Kill (1st in the NHL Playoffs)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #11 Zach Parise ~ 2G 0A = 2pts

2. #9 Mikko Koivu ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

3. #64 Mikael Granlund ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

4. #20 Ryan Suter ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

5. #12 Eric Staal ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #20 Ryan Suter ~ 6 PIM’s

2. #11 Zach Parise ~ 2 PIM’s

3. #3 Charlie Coyle ~ 2 PIM’s

Top Goaltenders:

1. #40 Devan Dubnyk (0-2)  1.78GAA  .917%SP

2. #35 Darcy Kuemper N/A

 

 

Vs.

 

 

St. Louis Blues

2.00 Goals For Per Game (11th in the NHL Playoffs)

1.00 Goals Against Per Game (2nd in the NHL Playoffs)

0% Power Play (16th in the NHL Playoffs)

83.3% Penalty Kill (11th in the NHL Playoffs)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #6 Joel Edmundson ~ 2G 0A = 2pts

2. #17 Jaden Schwartz ~ 1G 1A = 2pts

3. #17 Vladimir Sobotka ~ 1G 0A = 1pt

4. #56 Magnus Paajarvi ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

5. #28 Kyle Brodziak ~ 0G 1A = 1pt

Top 3 PIM’s:

1. #10 Scottie Upshall ~ 4 PIM’s

2. #27 Alex Pietrangelo ~ 2 PIM’s

3. #75 Ryan Reaves ~ 2 PIM’s

Top Goaltenders:

1. #34 Jake Allen (2-0)  .87GAA  .974%SP

2. #40 Carter Hutton N/A

Lines:

St. Louis Blues

Schwartz~Barbashev~Tarasenko

Sobotka~Lehtera~Steen

Paajarvi~Berglund~Perron

Upshall~Brodziak~Reaves

Bouwmeester~Pietrangelo

Edmundson~Parayko

Gunnarsson~Bortuzzo

Allen

Hutton

Minnesota Wild

Haula~Koivu~Granlund

Niederreiter~Staal~Parise

Zucker~Hanzal~Coyle

Stewart~Eriksson Ek~Pominville

Suter~Spurgeon

Scandella~Dumba

Brodin~Folin

Dubnyk

Kuemper

 

Happy Easter, to those of you celebrating the holiday. Many of you will be feasting on ham and scalloped potatoes along with digging into a chocolate bunny and some jelly beans. I have been in a long debate with my husband and the guys over at 3 In the Box over the nastiness of the black jelly beans. I absolutely hate anything that is licorice or anise flavored. I do not understand how anyone can stand that stuff. In response, the guys just shake their heads and then down a shot of Sambucca. Yuck. Due to craziness of our schedules and my mom’s schedule, we’re not having an Easter dinner. Our plan for dinner after this afternoon’s game might be more A Christmas Story than anything that feels like the traditional Easter meal. We’re considering seeing if our local Chinese restaurant is open today. I wouldn’t be shocked if they were, as most restaurants are open today as a lot of people eat out on Easter, just like they do on Mother’s Day. So far, my Easter has involved sleeping in, doing some laundry, and enjoying a glass of iced, Vietnamese-style coffee. If you have never had Vietnamese coffee, you are missing out. First, make yourself a batch of cold-brew coffee, pour some into a glass, add some sweetened condensed milk, stir, and add ice. You will not be sorry. The only draw back is that you have to plan ahead with cold-brew coffee, but it is well worth it. This is my kind of Easter. Low key with coffee.

With it being Easter and all, one of the symbols is the ubiquitous egg. I like eggs. Well let me be a bit more specific. I like eggs of the chicken variety. I like them scrambled, hard boiled, over easy, fried, and even poached. In fact, I have some egg salad in my fridge for lunch today. However, there’s one place where I don’t like eggs. It’s the idea of the goose egg and sports. Right now the Minnesota Wild have laid a big ol’ goose egg in this series. Now it’s not a true goose egg because they haven’t failed to score. They’ve just failed to score enough in order to win. So the proverbial goose egg that the Wild have laid has them down in the series 0-2. Strangely enough, the Wild aren’t the only higher seed in this situation. The Wild’s arch-nemesis, the Chicago Blackhawks, are also down 0-2 to the Nashville Predators. However, if there was a team that could fight back and win the series, Chicago would be the one. But if they fail to win the series, this would be the year that the Wild would fail to advance to the second round.

If the Wild fail to advance, it will be because of their own failures. If you haven’t figured out why they’re unable to score like they were earlier in the season, I wonder what you’re seeing when you watch the game. The Saint Louis Blues are winning for one very important reason. They have figured out, that if you keep the Minnesota Wild to the perimeter, you have a great chance of beating them. To do this, the Blues will threaten you with their bodies. When Wild skaters see that a potential hit is coming, they will either pass the puck or take a shot that has no hope of getting past Jake Allen. And if by some miracle the puck gets near the blue paint, one of two things will happen (beyond Allen blocking it). These two things are either there are no Wild players there (mostly because no one is brave enough to take the abuse in front of the goal) or if there is a brave soul out in front of Allen, the puck ends up in their skates and they either get a very weak shot on goal or they lose possession. There’s also a related fault that is causing problems for the Wild. Again, their failure to skate with the puck is causing them problems. Yes, you need to pass the puck frequently in hockey. However, they’re not using the correct passes. There have been too many of the east-west passes as opposed to the north-south variety. The passes are getting blocked, or worse, intercepted. It is beyond obvious, that the Blues have mapped out the Wild’s playbook.Keep Minnesota to the outside, and you have a great chance of beating them. Or really, forcing the Wild to beat themselves.

With the way things have gone the past two games, I don’t see much changing today. Until they step up and are willing to go into the dirtier areas of the ice, there’s no chance for them to turn this series around. I’d love to see Minnesota come out strong today, but I’m not holding out much hope.