Following Monday’s 2-1 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes, the Minnesota Wild held a player-only meeting, according to the Star Tribune.
The details didn’t leave the room, but the message isn’t hard to guess at. The Wild need to do better on the road and, for that matter, they need someone other than the big three of forwards Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu, and Dany Heatley to step up.
Having Mikael Granlund and Devin Setoguchi practice on the fourth line didn’t help. The duo has now combined for just one goal through nine contests, but singling them out might be unfair. Beyond the big three, the Wild have netted a total of eight goals in 2013.
Parise scored his sixth goal of the season and 200th of his career, but it wasn’t enough and the Wild are now 0-3-1 on the road this season. If that doesn’t seem troubling given the small sample size, keep in mind that if you extend it back to the 2011-12 campaign, then Minnesota has earned a mere two regulation time wins in its past 31 road contest.
“We have some very positive pieces here, but we need to get some results,” 36-year-old forward Matt Cullen said. “And that was not good enough. A game that we could have won. We have a better [game] here and we’ve got to find it.”
The Wild will return to Minnesota for a pair of home games before they play in Calgary on Feb. 11.
This hasn’t been the best night for St. Louis sports fans.
Obviously, the MLB’s Cardinals getting bounced from the playoffs is a bigger deal, but the Blues face bad news, too.
While they’re currently leading the Calgary Flames by a score of 4-3, they’ll need to hang on without Kevin Shattenkirk, whose night is over thanks to a lower-body injury.
There’s no word yet on how severe the issue might be.
Naturally, the Blues must hope that it’s minor, as Shattenkirk is one of the NHL’s truly underrated assets on the blueline.
Stephanie (@MyRegularFace) tracked down a moment when the injury may have happened:
It’s not all rosy for the Flames, either, as Lance Bouma suffered an injury as well.
In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.
For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.
Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.
Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.
They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.
Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.