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The Sports Daily > Crease and Assist
Game #46: Minnesota Wild vs. Colorado Avalanche 1/11/2014 @ 7:00PM CST at Xcel Energy Center

Minnesota Wild (24-17-5)  53pts  4th in the Central

2.30 Goals For (27th)

2.41 Goals Against (8th)

19.9% Power Play (9th)

79.2% Penalty Kill (25th)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #29 Jason Pominville ~ 18G 13A = 31pts

2. #20 Ryan Suter ~ 5G 24A = 29pts

3. #22 Nino Niederreiter ~ 9G 15A = 24pts

4. #24 Matt Cooke ~ 5G 13A = 18pts

5. #64 Mikael Granlund ~ 3G 15A = 18pts

Top 3 PIM's:

1. #4 Clayton Stoner ~ 39 PIM's

2. #2 Keith Ballard ~ 31 PIM's

3. #39 Nate Prosser ~ 28 PIM's

Top Goaltenders:

1. #37 Josh Harding (18-7-3)  1.65GAA  .933%SP  3SO

2. #32 Niklas Backstrom (5-9-2)  3.02GAA  .902%SP

3. #35 Darcy Kuemper (1-1-0)  3.39GAA  .875%SP

 

 

Vs.

 

 

Colorado Avalanche (27-12-5)  59pts  3rd in the Central

2.86 Goals For (9th)

2.50 Goals Against (12th)

19.5% Power Play (11th)

80.4% Penalty Kill (18th)

Top 5 Scorers:

1. #9 Matt Duchene ~ 16G 22A = 38pts

2. #92 Gabriel Landeskog ~ 12G 22A = 34pts

3. #26 Paul Stastny ~ 13G 20A = 33pts

4. #29 Nathan MacKinnon ~ 15G 14A = 29pts

5. #90 Ryan O'Reilly ~ 14G 14A = 28pts

Top 3 PIM's:

1. #55 Cody McLeod ~ 80 PIM's

2. #58 Patrick Bordeleau ~ 50 PIM's

3. #9 Steve Downie ~ 36 PIM's

Top Goaltenders:

1. #1 Semyon Varlamov (20-8-5)  2.36GAA  .926%SP  1SO

2. #35 Jean-Sebastien Giguere (7-4-0)  2.65GAA  .911%SP  2SO

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Jared Spurgeon

 

As a kid, I loved to read dictionaries and encyclopedias.  I know, I know, that probably seems a bit nerdy to you.  However in the days before the internet was in every home, that was how one learned new information.  I'm also just old enough, that using the internet to write a research paper in college wasn't the thing to do.  That set of World Book encylopedias was or internet.  The information and colored pictures took you around the world.  The dictionary helped us learn new words.  But not only that, it could teach you the origin of the word, and some dictionaries also acted as a thesaurus.  But in these days of the internet at our fingertips, I've looked up the meaning of today's word to describe the Minnesota Wild and their situation.

From Merriam-Webster online:

prec·i·pice

noun ˈpre-s(ə-)pəs

: a very steep side of a mountain or cliff

: a point where danger, trouble, or difficulty begins

Today, that one word best describes the Wild's current position.  They are currently perched on the precipice, that dangerous edge, where one bad move will send them over the edge of the cliff.  Sure, many of us are feeling great about these four wins in a row, and they've been four wins against teams that will most likely have a place in the playoffs.  However, we have to keep these four wins in perspective.  These four wins came after six straight losses, losses against teams that the Wild should have beaten.  Right now, the Wild are clinging to the edge of the cliff by the grit and determination of young players along with a hope and prayer for our goaltending.  It's a precarious position at best.  And in all situations labled as precarious, it only takes one fales move and it sends you all over the edge.

As I'm reading the online version of the Minneapolis Star Tribune this morning, I came across an interesting bit of perspective.  After the morning skate in Phoenix, Wild head coach Mike Yeo ran into Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett.  The two coaches have a long history together, as Yeo played for Tippett when the latter was coaching the Houston Aeros.  They were complementing each other on their previous wins, the Wild's shootout win in Los Angeles and the Coyotes 6-0 win against Calgary.  Tippett definitely put the entire season for every team into perspective.  Tippett said to his former player, “You’re never as bad as you think you are, and you’re never as good as you think you are.”  That's never been more true for the Minnesota Wild.  And it further demonstrates that they're officially at the precipice.  This month could be a tough one for Minnesota, and it could be the month that determines whether or not they're really ready for a legitimate post-season run.  Minnesota definitely needs to keep on with their winning ways heading into next month's Olympic break.  No, they're not going to win them all (I'd be beyond shocked if they did), but they definitely need most of them.

Heading into tonight, I just hope that the team has checked and double checked their equipment and themselves.  The precipice is a dangerous place to be.  However, when one overcomes the precipice and reaches the summit, that is a feeling that cannot be surpassed. 

 

 

Jack Jablonski & Jenna Privette