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 Wild vs. Sharks 1/22/11 Official GDT

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Join date : 2009-09-25

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PostSubject: Wild vs. Sharks 1/22/11 Official GDT   Wild vs. Sharks 1/22/11  Official GDT I_icon_minitimeSun Jan 23, 2011 2:49 am

Wild vs. Sharks post-game and much more

Too little too late as Wild as 3-game winning streak is snapped in 4-3 road loss to San Jose

Written by Derek Felska | 22 January 2011

Last night, I finally had a little time to watch my DVD of the Minnesota Wild which has two of the biggest games of the franchises history. I had never really watched those games since I saw them when they originally aired back in 2000 and 2003 respectively. The first game featured a 6-0 stomping of Dallas during its inaugural season in their first game against the Wild played in Minnesota and the 2nd game was Game 7 of the 2003 Western Conference Quarterfinals which ended in an improbable victory for the upstart Wild over Patrick Roy and the Colorado Avalanche. A few things stood out to me as I watched those games. The level of obstruction in terms of hooking, holding and water skiing all over the ice was absolutely atrocious back then, and the Wild showed outstanding resiliency and perseverance in those respective games. Against Dallas, the Wild gave the Stars who were Stanley Cup runner up the season before 6 power plays and did not allow a goal. Meanwhile against Colorado, the Avalanche had one of the most potent lineups in the league featuring Roy, Joe Sakic, Rob Blake and Peter Forsberg. The Wild and most notably goaltender Manny Fernandez who stood on his head in both games bent but didn't break defensively and took advantage of their few scoring chances. There is sort of a sense of irony as news comes around stating that Forsberg practiced with the Avalanche this morning. Big goals in big games, solid play on special teams, and a full-team effort allowed the Wild to beat the odds to win those games. Those same traits will be needed tonight against the San Jose Sharks who like the Wild have 53 points in the standings and are doing whatever they can to battle their way into the Western Conference playoff picture.

The Wild have been more focused away from the Xcel Energy Center and hopefully they can have another solid road game this evening. The Sharks have been far more vulnerable defensively this season and neither of its Finnish-born goaltenders have been able to give them the stability between the pipes that they had with Evgeni Nabokov. Speaking of the former Sharks' long-time goaltender and all time leader in wins for the franchise the goaltender has returned from the Kontinental Hockey League where he was placed on waivers as some thought he was going to end up with the Detroit Red Wings. Yet as teams were worse than the Red Wings were having the opportunity to pluck Nabokov off waivers, the New York Islanders decided to claim the Russian goalie. TSN and later the NHL then reported that Nabokov was going to refuse to report to Long Island, which will likely mean the team will suspend him and then move him at their leisure. We shall see how the rest of this Long Island goaltender drama plays out. Will Minnesota be able to keep its momentum rolling tonight in the Shark tank? Or will they cause the Sharks to have a feeding frenzy? (click on the link for the rest of the article)

Ouch, but I liked the resiliency the Wild showed in this game. There is a complete post-game, a Houston Aeros update which includes a bit of a story about Gordie Howe with it, a Wild prospect report that focuses on Dylan McKinlay and Brett Bulmer. In addition there is a small suggestion about signing a few free undrafted free agents that participated in the team's Prospect Camp this summer. Enjoy...
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