The 8-1 defeat -- the worst in team history -- stretched a winless run to six games. "Emotionally deflated," the coach called his team.
The only positive for the Wild during what many players and coach Todd Richards called an "embarrassing" performance was there were enough cheering Montreal Canadiens fans to drown out the booing Wild fans.
If not for that, the Wild would have really been taken to the woodshed by its bloodthirsty fans, who probably wanted to slip on one of the thousands of Habs jerseys if only to hide.
The 8-1 pounding that took place inside Xcel Energy Center on Sunday reeked of what Richards called an "emotionally deflated" team that's facing the reality that a postseason berth has become fantasy.
"When you get to this point where there's so much on the line, the lows are very low," Richards said. "The highs aren't high at all, but the lows are low."
Montreal administered the Wild, winless in six (0-5-1), its most lopsided whipping in franchise history. The eight goals allowed set a home record and tied a team record.
Canadiens rookie P.K. Subban became the first defenseman to record a hat trick against the Wild. Only Mikko Koivu's penalty shot, third-period goal kept the Wild from its worst shutout loss in franchise history.
Chuck Kobasew and Nate Prosser were the only Wild players who didn't have a minus rating. Matt Cullen, John Madden and Cal Clutterbuck were minus-4. Clayton Stoner was on the ice for four goals and was minus-3, along with Brent Burns and Nick Schultz. Greg Zanon also was on the ice for three goals.
"For the fans that we have here, it's embarrassing the way we finished the game and it's embarrassing how we played in front of our two goalies," Koivu said.
Jose Theodore was the poor sap who started. The former Canadien was pulled after giving up five goals on 19 shots, the first coming 31 seconds in on Ryan White's first NHL goal on the first of a career-high three assists from former Wild first-round draft pick Benoit Pouliot.
Then it snowballed fast. The scores of Habs fans in town to see Montreal's rare Minnesota visit were having a ball, chanting, "Go, Habs, Go!" and doing their signature "Ole! Ole, Ole!" chant to their heart's content.
Wild fans wanted to crawl under their seats.
"No excuses, we weren't professionals out there," Madden said. "We didn't have our legs, we didn't have our mind, we didn't have emotion. We didn't bring it on any level."
By the middle of the second period, frustrated General Manager Chuck Fletcher held his chin up by his right hand. Angered owner Craig Leipold sat in his suite with his arms folded.
Richards doesn't believe his team -- which is 2-7-2 since management made no major moves at the trade deadline -- has given up.
"It was our flat-out execution all game," he said. "Our execution was probably the worst I've seen in just about two years now."
Zanon aggressively stepped up on Montreal's first goal. Clutterbuck coughed up the puck on the second. On Subban's first goal 51 seconds into the second period, the puck deflected in off Zanon's skate, but the Wild seemed mesmerized by Subban as he walked to the net.
On the fourth goal, Burns, who had another shaky game, stepped up to create a 2-on-0, but the Wild had four forwards on the ice because Richards mistakenly threw out a forward instead of a defenseman after a power play expired.
"I don't think we can point fingers at this guy, that guy," Richards said. "I need to be better as a coach, the players need to be better as players."
The season is spiraling uncontrollably. Toronto comes to town Tuesday.
"I trust the group, I trust the leaders," Richards said. "They're embarrassed by this tonight. They're going to come back, and we'll be ready to go on Tuesday."
|San Diego||0||1st Qtr 4:37|
|Minnesota||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Baltimore||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Detroit||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Cleveland||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Atlanta||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Green Bay||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|Kansas City||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|New England||12/21/14 12:00 PM|
|NY Giants||12/21/14 3:05 PM|
|Buffalo||12/21/14 3:25 PM|
|Indianapolis||12/21/14 3:25 PM|
|Seattle||12/21/14 7:30 PM|
|Denver||12/22/14 7:30 PM|
|Portland||94||4th Qtr 9:04|
|Utah||76||4th Qtr 7:24|
|Atlanta||45||2nd Qtr 4:47|
|San Antonio||15||1st Qtr 4:11|
|Tampa Bay||0||3rd Prd 19:20|
|Florida||1||2nd Prd :51|
|NY Rangers||0||3rd Prd|
|St. Louis||9:30 PM|
|Mount St Marys||45||FINAL|
|Stephen F Austin||94|
|St Josephs (IN)||54||FINAL|
|Coll of Charleston||68|
|Miss Valley St||60|
|Sam Houston St||61|
|Bluffton||53||2nd Half 0:43|
|NJIT||83||2nd Half 0:38|
|Central Conn St||74|
|Hofstra||71||2nd Half 0:54|
|Boston Univ||55||2nd Half 7:45|
|Iona||62||2nd Half 4:08|
|Texas A&M||56||2nd Half 3:10|
|Morgan State||68||2nd Half 0:25|
|East Carolina||52||2nd Half 1:43|
|Richmond||64||2nd Half 0:50|
|La Salle||58||2nd Half 1:50|
|Incarnate Word||62||2nd Half 5:34|
|CS-Bakersfield||48||2nd Half 6:02|
|Iowa||32||2nd Half 11:33|
|Milwaukee||35||2nd Half 13:23|
|Long Beach State||29||1st Half 2:27|
|TX-San Antonio||26||2nd Half|
|SE Missouri St||10||1st Half 11:48|
|New Mexico||8:00 PM|
|New Mexico St|
|Utah Valley U||8:00 PM|
|Jacksonville St||8:00 PM|
|St Edwards||8:00 PM|
|NC State||8:30 PM|
|TX A&M-CC||9:00 PM|
|Cal Poly||9:00 PM|
|Fresno State||9:00 PM|
|Montana State||9:00 PM|
|Ball State||9:00 PM|
|San Diego St|
|South Dakota St||9:05 PM|
|Western Mich||17||4th Qtr 6:05|
|South Alabama||8:15 PM|
|BYU||12/22/14 1:00 PM|
|Marshall||12/23/14 5:00 PM|
|Navy||12/23/14 8:30 PM|
|San Diego St|
|Central Mich||12/24/14 11:00 AM|
|Fresno State||12/24/14 7:00 PM|
|Illinois||12/26/14 12:00 PM|
|Rutgers||12/26/14 3:30 PM|
|NC State||12/26/14 7:00 PM|
|Cincinnati||12/27/14 12:00 PM|
|Duke||12/27/14 1:10 PM|
|(15) Arizona State|
|Miami-Florida||12/27/14 3:00 PM|
|Boston College||12/27/14 3:30 PM|
|(25) Nebraska||12/27/14 7:00 PM|
|East Tenn St||56||FINAL|
|(1) South Carolina||80|
|St Thomas Aquinas||45||FINAL|
|(22) West Virginia||69|
|(18) Michigan State||65||FINAL|
|San Jose St||62||FINAL|
|San Diego State||54|
|Stephen F Austin||72|
|New Mexico St||57|
|(16) Oregon State||73||FINAL|
|Troy||74||2nd Half 0:01|
|Saint Louis||43||2nd Half 12:29|
|Utah Valley U||35|
|Pacific||17||1st Half 3:52|
|Long Beach St||18|
|Old Dominion||36||1st Half 1:09|
|Austin Peay||9:00 PM|
|Lewis-Clark State||9:00 PM|
|(21) Miss State||9:30 PM|