Talent shines through as Wild overwhelms Calgary

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 6, 2013 - 12:36 AM

The Wild’s top line dominated, and even tough guy Zenon Konopka scored.

 

Xcel Energy Center has been plenty loud this season. That’s what a stretch of seven victories in eight home games will do.

But the arena’s snowy roof nearly caved twice during the Wild’s 5-1 thumping of the Calgary Flames on Tuesday night, once when part-time fighter/part-time winemaker Zenon Konopka was rewarded with his first goal in almost two calendar years and once when Zach Parise finished off one of the prettiest scoring plays in recent Wild memory.

Parise’s tic-tac-toe goal off Mikko Koivu’s “world-class pass” and Ryan Suter’s initial setup not only caused Parise’s mouth to go agape during a classic “did that just happen?” celebration, it put a stamp on a three-goal third period and 3-1 homestand for the Wild.

“The goals that they scored, you could have taped Patrick Roy, [Ed] Belfour and [Martin] Brodeur together, and we wouldn’t have won that game,” Flames coach Bob Hartley said. “They were so much better than us, they deserved the two points.”

Hours after coach Mike Yeo said he wanted more goals from Parise and Koivu, the first-liners delivered. Parise scored twice on five shots and added an assist. Koivu scored once on three shots, had two assists and won 11 of 15 faceoffs.

Justin Fontaine scored his fifth goal, Suter assisted on two goals and Josh Harding continued his remarkable run in net.

Harding, the NHL’s leader in goals-against average (1.10) and save percentage (.951), made 24 saves to improve to 8-2-1. He has given up 12 goals in 12 games, allowing one goal or none in 10. He again needed to be good early after a second consecutive slow start by his teammates.

“Sometimes you’re not quite there, but [good goaltending] allows you to find your game,” Yeo said. “He’s done that for us.”

Charlie Coyle returned after missing 12 of the past 13 games because of a knee injury. He assisted on Koivu’s tying goal after forcing a neutral-zone turnover.

“He’s good at being an out when we’re scrambling in the corners,” Parise said.

“Plays with speed, plays so smart, makes room for us out there. He makes a big difference in our lineup.”

Koivu said Coyle was so good “after missing all those games, what can he be in a month?”

It was a big goal for Koivu, who recorded his first multipoint game this season. He had scored once in 15 prior games, and this tally came less four minutes after Jiri Hudler gave Calgary a 1-0 lead.

“It feels good to get that confidence a little higher individually and help the team to win,” Koivu said. “That’s our job to create and score goals.”

Parise scored his fifth power-play goal in the second period before the Wild broke the game open in the third.

After Fontaine scored through Matt Cooke’s screen, Torrey Mitchell sent Konopka in for his first goal since Dec. 16, 2011, ending an 81-game drought. It was Konopka’s first point in 53 games with Minnesota. Linemate Dany Heatley picked up the puck for Konopka, and Yeo said “there were a lot of smiles” on the fired-up bench.

“Hopefully, they come in bunches now. I’m not going to bet my life on it,” Konopka deadpanned.

  • related content

  • Photo gallery: Wild 5, Calgary 1

    Tuesday November 5, 2013

    The Wild played the Calgary Flames at Xcel Tuesday night.

  • Wild notes: Pominville back in mix for U.S. Olympic team

    Wednesday November 6, 2013

    Jason Pominville’s scorching stretch has gotten the attention of USA Hockey.

  • Wild-Calgary game recap

    Tuesday November 5, 2013

    Game recapStar Tribune’s three stars1. Zach Parise, Wild: Leads the team with 14 points after two goals, one assist, five...

  • Postgame: Konopka sticks up for Heatley and more notes

    Tuesday November 5, 2013

    Zach Parise and Mikko Koivu each had three points and Josh Harding made 24 saves as the Wild routed Calgary

  • Minnesota Wild's Zach Parise, left, is thwarted in his attempt to scor...

  • Flames defenseman Kris Russell shoved Wild center Zenon Konopka into goalie Reto Berra. Later, Konopka scored his first goal in 82 games.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Tampa 6 FINAL
Philadelphia 2
LA Clippers 96 FINAL
Chicago 86
Cleveland 103 FINAL
Houston 105
Golden State 106 FINAL
Boston 101
Philadelphia 74 FINAL
Indiana 94
Portland 110 FINAL
Sacramento 99
Charlotte 98 FINAL
Orlando 83
Oklahoma City 108 FINAL
LA Lakers 101
New Orleans 99 FINAL
Denver 92
Los Angeles 2 FINAL
Winnipeg 5
Tampa Bay 3 FINAL
Florida 4
Columbus 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 5
Toronto 0 FINAL
Washington 4
Anaheim 3 FINAL
Dallas 1
St. Louis 5 FINAL(SO)
Vancouver 6
SMU 73 FINAL
Connecticut 81
Quinnipiac 65 FINAL
Manhattan 69
Fairfield 56 FINAL
Niagara 57
Marist 49 FINAL
Rider 59
Iona 60 FINAL
Saint Peters 68
Oregon State 56 FINAL
California 73
South Florida 55 FINAL
Houston 72
Marquette 66 FINAL
Providence 77
Michigan State 61 FINAL
Wisconsin 68
Siena 57 FINAL
Monmouth 63
Pittsburgh 66 FINAL
Wake Forest 69
Oregon 73 FINAL
Stanford 70
Purdue 61 FINAL
Ohio State 65
Arizona State 81 FINAL
Colorado 87
Washington St 67 FINAL
UCLA 72
Georgetown 66 FINAL
Providence 81
Binghamton 50 FINAL
UMBC 73
Elon 65 FINAL
Hofstra 58
Virginia Tech 47 FINAL
Boston College 49
(8) Louisville 59 FINAL
Virginia 75
Texas 69 FINAL
West Virginia 76
Creighton 53 FINAL
Villanova 61
Seton Hall 85 FINAL
Butler 76
UNC-Wilmington 76 FINAL
Coll of Charleston 65
(5) Maryland 69 FINAL
(25) Northwestern 48
Saint Josephs 67 FINAL
La Salle 55
Louisiana Tech 53 FINAL
TX-San Antonio 60
Rhode Island 70 FINAL
Massachusetts 78
Richmond 55 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 49
Davidson 46 FINAL
Fordham 54
St Bonaventure 43 FINAL
Duquesne 51
George Mason 45 FINAL
(22) George Washington 80
Indiana 60 FINAL
(20) Rutgers 71
(12) Texas A&M 63 FINAL
LSU 80
Ole Miss 47 FINAL
(11) Miss State 55
Clemson 56 FINAL
Pittsburgh 61
Maine 47 FINAL
New Hampshire 61
Vermont 48 FINAL
Albany 76
Quinnipiac 87 FINAL
Monmouth 48
Saint Peters 47 FINAL
Siena 64
(4) Notre Dame 67 FINAL
NC State 60
Wisconsin 62 FINAL
Penn State 56
Stony Brook 49 FINAL
Hartford 56
Northeastern 47 FINAL
William & Mary 62
St Johns 61 FINAL
Xavier 74
James Madison 74 FINAL
Delaware 71
Towson 45 FINAL
Drexel 50
Illinois State 50 FINAL
Bradley 60
Southern Ill 74 FINAL
Loyola-Chicago 70
Northern Iowa 54 FINAL
Wichita State 66
Minnesota 76 FINAL
(17) Iowa 92
(15) North Carolina 80 FINAL
(16) Duke 81
Alabama 73 FINAL
Auburn 80
(9) Florida State 69 FINAL
Miami-Florida 55
Arkansas 41 FINAL
Missouri 57
Georgia 52 FINAL
Florida 45
Dayton 95 FINAL
Saint Louis 68
Drake 57 FINAL
Missouri State 86
Colorado 46 FINAL
(10) Arizona State 59
(19) Stanford 55 FINAL
Oregon 62
Marquette 82 FINAL
DePaul 99
Southern Miss 66 FINAL
Texas-El Paso 60
Vanderbilt 49 FINAL
(6) Tennessee 79
(2) South Carolina 56 FINAL
(13) Kentucky 67
Utah 41 FINAL
Arizona 64
Ohio State 78 FINAL
Nebraska 60
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which is your favorite 'return' by a Minnesota athlete?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close