The lasting effect of Sunday’s loss was evident in Monday’s practice. Yeo said it was “understandably not joyous and chipper.”
He said the shame of that defeat was that there were a lot of positive things to grab onto for a team lacking confidence, such as the four goals and 25 scoring chances the Wild generated. But “some new problems have crept in,” he said.
The Wild has allowed 24 goals during the five-game losing streak, and much of Monday’s practice surrounded defensive-zone coverage.
“All good teams go through these things, but they react the right way and they get better because of it,” Yeo said.
The Wild’s confidence has been so shattered, it’s almost waiting for bad things to happen.
“The further a losing streak goes, the harder it gets because the power of your mind is stronger than anything else in this game,” veteran Matt Cooke said. “Unless you’ve been taught to strengthen your mind in bad situations, then it festers.
“You have to guard against sitting on the fence waiting for someone to push you backward as opposed to leaning forward and making sure you don’t fall. We, as a group, need to be mentally tough. There’s no other option but to go out and have our best game of the year [Tuesday] night against St. Louis.”