Wild believe they have ‘more to give’ after season-opening loss

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Somehow, the Minnesota Wild were only down a goal after one period. Somehow, because they were outshot 14-2 in the opening 20 minutes of last night’s game in St. Louis, an eventual 3-2 Blues victory.

It was the Wild’s first game of the season, while the Blues had opened the night before with an impressive 5-2 win in Chicago.

Minnesota’s new coach, Bruce Boudreau, wondered if that was a factor.

“I was thinking [Wednesday] night was such an advantage for them to already have played a fast-paced game knowing what it is, and this is not an excuse, but we were a step behind it seemed all night long,” Boudreau said, per the Star Tribune.

Minnesota did get back into the contest, outshooting the Blues, 19-17, over the final two periods. But overall, the coach and players were left unsatisfied with their first effort of 2016-17.

Boudreau said he hoped it was “based upon first-game jitters,” as opposed to a sign of things to come. The Wild have their home opener on Saturday against the Jets, one of the Central Division teams they could be battling for a playoff spot.

“Probably we all agree we have a lot more to give,” said goalie Deven Dubnyk.

Related: With an aging core, the Wild could be Boudreau’s biggest challenge yet