Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Wild outplayed from start to finish as Blackhawks take 2-0 series lead

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild game coverage Updated: May 4, 2013 - 12:16 AM
Other than a late push in the second period, the Wild was on its heels from start to finish tonight as the Chicago Blackhawks convincingly took a 5-2 victory in Game 2 of the Western Conference quarterfinals.
 
Teams that go up 2-0 in a best-of-seven series have gone on to win the series 86.7 percent (280-43) of the time in NHL history. The Blackhawks are 19-2 up 2-0 all-time.
 
Just no contest. It’s why the Game 1 loss was so big. The Wild put itself in position to steal one from the Blackhawks. It couldn’t get it done and the Blackhawks became the Blackhawks tonight.
 
They are bigger, faster and deeper than the Wild. If you turn pucks over or can’t make a pass or fail to capitalize, they’ll come at you in waves and eventually make you pay.
 
“There was clearly another level to their game tonight and I’d say that there’s at least another level to ours that was unfortunately in the wrong direction,” coach Mike Yeo said.
 
Michael Frolik and Patrick Sharp each scored twice. The first Sharp goal was the killer because it came after Devin Setoguchi trimmed the deficit to 2-1 with 2:03 left in the second period.
 
Read the gamer for all the details, but the Wild was outshot 48-28 – the 48 shots being the most Minnesota has ever given up in a playoff game – and Mikko Koivu and Zach Parise were not only shut out again, they were each minus-3.
 
Koivu had a terrible game. Two shots, three minors, the turnover that led to Frolik’s shorthanded goal when the Wild had a chance to tie at the start of the second, a shot blocked that ruined a power play, passes off the mark by several feet.
 
“I am going to have a tough time sitting up here saying that we’re real happy with anyone,” Yeo said when asked about Koivu’s play. “This is a team effort tonight, and unfortunately it wasn’t a very good one.”
 
Jim Souhan wrote about Koivu’s game, I believe.
 
The Wild again generated no sustained pressure in the offensive zone. They left Josh Harding (43 saves) out to dry. And the Blackhawks continually attacked because of turnovers, no puck support, etc.
 
“We weren’t playing with the pace that we needed to play,” Yeo said. “A large number of the things that we were doing helped them build the speed into their game. They were better tonight from Game 1 and we were worse.”
 
On what the Wild does now, besides casting this aside and relying on home-ice at the X, Yeo said, “We’re going to have to make a couple adjustments for sure. We’ll look at this and figure out what is it a matter of that we’re doing poorly and what is it a matter of what we need to do differently.
 
“I already have some pretty strong feelings on both.”
 
This was a mismatch from the outset. The Wild blew its opportunity to take Game 1. We’ll see where this goes from here, but it’s hard to see how the Wild will figure out a way to compete with the best team in the league in a real short series from here on out.
 
Early flight. Talk to you after Saturday’s practice/availability.

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New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Milwaukee 13 1st Qtr 7:09
Orlando 7
New York 13 1st Qtr 6:41
Indiana 8
Denver 7:00 PM
Memphis
Chicago 9:30 PM
LA Lakers
Montreal 0 1st Prd 12:31
NY Rangers 0
Winnipeg 0 1st Prd 13:36
Philadelphia 0
Boston 0 1st Prd 15:26
NY Islanders 0
Arizona 6:30 PM
Toronto
Dallas 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Detroit 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Columbus 6:30 PM
Florida
Nashville 7:00 PM
St. Louis
Minnesota 8:00 PM
Calgary
Buffalo 8:30 PM
Edmonton
Anaheim 9:00 PM
San Jose
DePaul 72 FINAL
Providence 83
Michigan State 52 2nd Half 16:31
Rutgers 36
Boston Univ 9 1st Half 15:40
Army 3
Fla Atlantic 9 1st Half 14:59
Charlotte 7
Youngstown St 4 1st Half 14:31
Detroit 10
East Tenn St 10 1st Half 14:09
Furman 11
Saint Louis 9 1st Half 11:43
George Mason 6
USC Upstate 0 1st Half 20:00
Jacksonville 0
High Point 9 1st Half 14:53
Liberty 2
Central Conn St 13 1st Half 9:28
Long Island 13
Western Ky 4 1st Half 14:46
Louisiana Tech 11
Dayton 12 1st Half 11:57
Massachusetts 17
Chattanooga 7 1st Half 11:30
Mercer 22
Wofford 2 1st Half 15:06
UNC Greensboro 12
Maryland 5 1st Half 12:12
Ohio State 7
FIU 8 1st Half 14:55
Old Dominion 5
Fair-Dickinson 6 1st Half 14:10
Robert Morris 15
Mount St Marys 14 1st Half 12:30
St Francis-NY 7
Bryant 12 1st Half 12:47
St Francis-PA 16
Northern Ky 6 1st Half 13:14
Stetson 12
Coll of Charleston 5 1st Half 14:36
Towson 4
Western Carolina 11 1st Half 14:21
Va Military 2
Sacred Heart 9 1st Half 14:13
Wagner 8
Lipscomb 13 1st Half 11:33
Fla Gulf Coast 20
Kennesaw St 6 1st Half 11:40
North Florida 23
Appalachian St 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
Holy Cross 6:30 PM
Loyola-Maryland
Eastern Ill 6:30 PM
UT Martin
Jacksonville St 7:00 PM
Belmont
Connecticut 7:00 PM
Cincinnati
Rider 7:00 PM
Saint Peters
SIU Edwardsville 7:00 PM
SE Missouri St
Marshall 7:00 PM
Southern Miss
Tenn Tech 7:00 PM
Tennessee St
Middle Tennessee 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Ill-Chicago 7:00 PM
Milwaukee
Weber State 7:00 PM
North Dakota
Denver 7:00 PM
North Dakota St
IUPU-Ft Wayne 7:00 PM
South Dakota
Louisiana 7:05 PM
South Alabama
Georgia State 7:15 PM
Texas-Arlington
Ark-Little Rock 7:30 PM
Arkansas State
ULM 7:30 PM
Troy
Portland 8:00 PM
Gonzaga
Kentucky 8:00 PM
Missouri
Eastern Ky 8:00 PM
Murray State
UAB 8:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Idaho State 8:00 PM
Northern Colorado
UMKC 8:00 PM
Grand Canyon
Chicago State 8:05 PM
Utah Valley U
Colorado 8:30 PM
USC
Cal Poly 9:00 PM
UC Irvine
Hawaii 9:00 PM
CS-Northridge
Pepperdine 9:00 PM
Pacific
Santa Clara 9:00 PM
San Diego
Utah 9:00 PM
UCLA
UC Santa Barbara 9:00 PM
UC Davis
Montana 9:05 PM
Portland State
Montana State 9:05 PM
Sacramento St
Long Beach State 9:30 PM
Cal State Fullerton
Loyola Marymount 9:30 PM
St Marys-CA
San Francisco 10:00 PM
BYU
California 10:00 PM
Washington St
Louisiana 47 FINAL
South Alabama 57
Saint Josephs 51 FINAL
Saint Louis 52
Appalachian St 77 FINAL
Georgia Southern 74
Niagara 58 FINAL
Saint Peters 65
Old Dominion 45 2nd Half 10:24
FIU 37
Southern Miss 45 2nd Half 11:54
Marshall 38
Georgia State 19 2nd Half 16:02
TX-Arlington 37
Ark-Little Rock 45 2nd Half 12:27
Arkansas State 47
ULM 14 2nd Half
Troy 47
Pittsburgh 20 2nd Half
(17) Duke 36
(6) Tennessee 12 1st Half 11:58
(10) Kentucky 10
(24) Oklahoma 13 1st Half 12:07
(14) Texas 14
Nebraska Omaha 5 1st Half 13:03
IUPU-Ft Wayne 14
UC-Riverside 8 1st Half 14:19
CS-Northridge 8
Army 13 1st Half 12:08
Boston U 5
New Orleans 6 1st Half 12:32
Nicholls 6
Charlotte 9 1st Half 16:00
Florida Atlantic 8
Towson 10 1st Half 11:33
Delaware 11
Hofstra 10 1st Half 15:29
Northeastern 6
New Hampshire 6 1st Half 14:31
Maine 18
Albany 16 1st Half 12:50
Vermont 5
Hartford 17 1st Half 11:01
Stony Brook 11
UNC-Wilmington 17 1st Half
William & Mary 7
Clemson 7 1st Half 12:26
Wake Forest 15
Alabama 8 1st Half 12:09
(1) South Carolina 18
(23) Syracuse 5 1st Half 15:22
(8) Louisville 5
Missouri 14 1st Half 12:44
Florida 8
Iona 13 1st Half 11:38
Fairfield 13
Manhattan 8 1st Half
Marist 20
NC State 15 1st Half 11:13
Virginia 12
(4) Notre Dame 8 1st Half 14:00
Virginia Tech 3
(22) Rutgers 13 1st Half 12:45
Purdue 3
(5) Maryland 15 1st Half 15:13
Michigan 8
Milwaukee 12 1st Half 10:12
Cleveland State 11
Wright State 20 1st Half 12:30
Oakland 12
Jacksonville 1 1st Half 17:42
USC Upstate 4
North Florida 2 1st Half 10:14
Kennesaw St 9
Stetson 5 1st Half 16:09
Northern Ky 0
Loyola-Maryland 2 1st Half 14:13
Holy Cross 7
Lamar 6:30 PM
Sam Houston St
Fla Gulf Coast 6:30 PM
Lipscomb
Vanderbilt 7:00 PM
(18) Miss State
IUPUI 7:00 PM
Western Ill
Abilene Christian 7:00 PM
Houston Baptist
Incarnate Word 7:00 PM
TX A&M-CC
McNeese State 7:00 PM
SE Louisiana
Oral Roberts 7:00 PM
South Dakota St
Louisiana Tech 7:00 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 7:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
UAB
Auburn 7:00 PM
Arkansas
Grand Canyon 7:00 PM
UMKC
Illinois 7:00 PM
(15) Nebraska
(20) Iowa 7:00 PM
Northwestern
Utah Valley U 7:05 PM
Chicago State
Green Bay 7:05 PM
Valparaiso
Ole Miss 8:00 PM
LSU
Portland State 8:00 PM
Montana
Sacramento St 8:00 PM
Montana State
North Dakota 8:00 PM
Weber State
Ohio State 8:00 PM
Wisconsin
Northern Colorado 8:00 PM
Idaho State
BYU 9:00 PM
San Francisco
St Marys-CA 9:00 PM
Loyola Marymount
Pacific 9:00 PM
Pepperdine
Cal-Irvine 9:00 PM
UC Santa Barbara
San Diego 9:00 PM
Santa Clara
UC Davis 9:00 PM
Cal Poly
Long Beach St 10:59 PM
Hawaii
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