Wild fails to hit the 100-point mark

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 14, 2014 - 7:37 AM

With the playoffs around the corner, it was clear the Wild was in severe do-not-get-hurt mode during Sunday’s 7-3 regular-season finale drubbing by the Nashville Predators.

Players visibly bailed out of shooting lanes and dodged checks. For the Wild’s sake, the team better also hope that Ilya Bryzgalov was getting his first and only nightmarish game out of the way before the playoffs.

After the Wild built a 3-1 lead, Bryzgalov gave up three goals on three shots in a two-minute span and four total during a stunningly poor second-period display.

He was pulled after two periods, having allowed five goals on 21 shots.

“We were brutal in front of him,” coach Mike Yeo said. “It’s got to be a team effort. Bryz has done a fantastic job since he’s been here, and his teammates have done a fantastic job in front of him to give him that opportunity. That’s the mentality we have to have.”

The Wild gave up six unanswered goals and failed to hit what would have been the second 100-point season in franchise history. Former Badger Craig Smith overshadowed Jason Pominville’s second three-point night in three games with two goals and two assists.

Bryzgalov, who is 7-1-3 as the Wild’s starter with a 2.00 goals-against average and .916 save percentage, wasn’t seeing pucks well, slipped and fell out of the net before one goal and just looked checked out with the rest of his teammates. Bryzgalov has played 38 playoff games and won a Stanley Cup as Anaheim’s backup in 2007 but has also gained a reputation for playoff flops in Phoenix and Philadelphia from 2010-12. So even though Sunday’s game and performance meant squat in the standings, it was disconcerting to witness.

“I’m not worried about it,” Yeo said.

Wild players admitted afterward it was a hard game to play with the playoffs beginning Thursday at Colorado.

“You always have in the back of your mind, you don’t want to get hurt, you don’t want to take one off the ankle,” Pominville said. “Sometimes it leads to those results. It wasn’t pretty, it’s not the way we wanted to end it, but those things happen when you’re in and other teams are out.”

Erik Haula scored a goal and had an assist for his first career two-point game. The rookie finished the season with seven points in seven games since taking Mikael Granlund’s second-line center spot after he was injured March 31 in Los Angeles.

Yeo said Sunday morning that Granlund had another “good day” on the ice and the hope is Granlund will be ready by Game 1. Yeo made clear Sunday night he would return to his normal spot.

“He deserves it. He’s had a great season,” Haula said. “Whatever the role, I’m OK with it.”


Kyle Brodziak’s consecutive-games-played streak ended at 231 games Sunday when he missed his first game since Feb. 25, 2011, because of a lower-body injury.

“It’s silly to play him,” Yeo said. “He certainly could have played, but we just want to make sure we’re giving him every opportunity to make sure he’s 100 percent heading into Thursday.”

With Brodziak out, winger Nino Niederreiter moved to center for the first time in his NHL career. Since Dany Heatley also couldn’t play after leaving Sunday’s pregame skate with “lower-body discomfort,” the Wild went with seven defensemen and Jon Blum skated some shifts as a forward.

• Defenseman Clayton Stoner (knee) returned after missing 10 games.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Detroit 6:00 PM
Portland 6:00 PM
Sacramento 6:30 PM
Boston 7:00 PM
Dallas 7:00 PM
Denver 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Brooklyn 7:00 PM
Oklahoma City 7:00 PM
New York
Charlotte 7:30 PM
San Antonio
LA Clippers 8:00 PM
Washington 9:30 PM
Toronto 6:30 PM
New Jersey
Pittsburgh 7:00 PM
Chicago 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Temple 6:00 PM
Winthrop 6:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Lafayette 6:00 PM
Northeastern 6:00 PM
Wake Forest 6:00 PM
Florida State
Rhode Island 6:00 PM
Delaware 6:00 PM
James Madison
South Carolina 6:00 PM
New Hampshire 6:00 PM
Seton Hall 6:00 PM
Binghamton 6:00 PM
American Univ 6:00 PM
Elon 6:00 PM
Wright State 6:00 PM
Minnesota 6:00 PM
Penn State
Duquesne 6:00 PM
SMU 6:00 PM
South Florida
Hartford 6:00 PM
Stony Brook
Albany 6:00 PM
Hofstra 6:00 PM
William & Mary
UNC-Asheville 6:00 PM
Radford 6:30 PM
Char Southern
Holy Cross 0 Postponed
Loyola-Maryland 0
Duke 6:30 PM
Notre Dame
Texas Tech 6:30 PM
Oregon State 7:00 PM
Arizona State
Morehead State 7:00 PM
Austin Peay
Drake 7:00 PM
Lehigh 7:00 PM
Rice 7:00 PM
Missouri State 7:00 PM
Illinois State
Loyola-Chicago 7:00 PM
Wichita State
Nebraska Omaha 7:00 PM
South Dakota St
Northern Iowa 7:05 PM
Southern Ill
Louisville 8:00 PM
Boston College
St Johns 8:00 PM
East Carolina 8:00 PM
Georgia Tech 8:00 PM
Miss State 8:00 PM
Ole Miss
Clemson 8:00 PM
NC State
Indiana 8:00 PM
Kansas 8:00 PM
Oregon 9:00 PM
Air Force 9:00 PM
San Jose St
Stanford 10:00 PM
Rider 56 FINAL
Siena 49
Dayton 76 FINAL
Richmond 62
Eastern Kentucky 53 FINAL
Jacksonville St 73
Saint Josephs 0 Postponed
Saint Louis 0
UMBC 6:00 PM
Akron 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 6:00 PM
Memphis 6:00 PM
East Carolina 6:00 PM
(2) Connecticut
Murray State 6:00 PM
Eastern Illinois
Kent State 6:00 PM
Central Michigan
UT Martin 6:00 PM
Tennessee St
Eastern Michigan 6:00 PM
Western Mich
Bucknell 6:00 PM
Indiana 6:00 PM
Michigan State
Colgate 6:00 PM
Fordham 6:00 PM
Duquesne 6:00 PM
St Bonaventure
George Mason 6:00 PM
VA Commonwealth
Detroit 6:00 PM
Youngstown St
Army 0 Postponed
Boston U 0
Loyola-Maryland 0 Postponed
Holy Cross 0
SMU 7:00 PM
Oklahoma St 7:00 PM
Kansas State
West Virginia 7:00 PM
Texas Tech
Denver 7:00 PM
South Dakota
Northwestern St 7:00 PM
Central Arkansas
Austin Peay 7:00 PM
Kansas 7:00 PM
Iowa State
Bowling Green 7:00 PM
Northern Ill
Penn State 7:00 PM
San Jose St 8:00 PM
Air Force
Boise State 8:00 PM
Colorado State
Utah State 8:00 PM
San Diego State 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Nevada 9:00 PM
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: What chance does the Wild have of making the playoffs?

Weekly Question