Wild dominates again to even series with Avs

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 25, 2014 - 12:27 PM

That’s why Wild coach Mike Yeo threw Game 3’s hero onto the ice with a minute left Thursday night with the Wild frantically trying to kill off a 6-on-4 Colorado Avalanche power play.

Granlund, who already had assisted on a goal, drawn three penalties and won 67 percent of his faceoffs in Game 4, capped everything by throwing his body into three Erik Johnson bullets. The last of Granlund’s gutsy blocked shots came with four seconds left and helped the Wild pull off a 2-1 victory to send the Western Conference quarterfinals back to Denver knotted at two games apiece.

“You try to do all you can for the win,” said Granlund, who blocked one of the three shots without his stick. “Every guy in this locker room would do that. It’s all about desperation.”

In dominant fashion, the Wild responded to the Avalanche winning Games 1 and 2 at home by pulling off a home sweep of its own.

“It’s kind of like tennis to hold your serve here,” said center Erik Haula, a key reason the Wild went 4-for-4 on the penalty kill and held young star Nathan MacKinnon to no shots. “We were able to do that, and now hopefully we get a chance to break theirs.”

With the series suddenly a best-of-three with Game 5 and potentially Game 7 in Denver, Zach Parise said, “One way or another, if we want to win this series, we’ve got to win a road game.”

For the second consecutive game at an electric Xcel Energy Center, the Wild tilted the ice for nearly 60 minutes Semyon Varlamov’s way. For the second consecutive game, Varlamov — and Varlamov alone — prevented the Avalanche from being routed.

In the third period, Wild fans, the 19,396 who had been ‘‘oohing’’ and “ahhing’’ all game, tried to help the Wild by chanting, “Sieve, Sieve, Sieve,” at Varlamov.

One night after firing 46 shots at Varlamov in a 1-0 overtime victory, the Wild outshot the Avalanche 32-12. The 12 shots against set a Wild playoff record.

“You don’t see that too often,” forward Jason Pominville said. “It was a complete team effort. Guys were paying a price.”

Nobody bigger than Granlund, who exhilarated fans three nights earlier with his scintillating overtime winner. After Haula, Mikko Koivu, Ryan Suter and Jared Spurgeon killed off the first minute of Jonas Brodin’s minor, Granlund, Parise, Marco Scandella and Nate Prosser came out for the final minute.

At one point Granlund, who refused to flee shooting lanes, lost his stick.

“You just want to throw him one,” said Suter, who stressfully watched from the bench. “That was impressive. That spoke to the way he played all game, the way all our guys played all night.”

When that final horn blared, the euphoric fans erupted.

“We’ve had some exciting games since I’ve been here in this building, but I’ve never heard anything like that tonight,” Yeo said of the crowd.

In the two games in Minnesota, the Wild outshot the Avalanche 78-34. When Ryan O’Reilly scored Colorado’s lone goal with 6:35 left in the second, it was the Avs’ seventh shot of the game. They didn’t get another for the next 14 minutes.

The Wild got goals from Spurgeon and Charlie Coyle, and Darcy Kuemper had to make only 11  saves for his second consecutive victory.

The first period looked like a 20-minute power play. Just like Monday’s Game 3, the Wild was first to every puck, won every battle and forced turnover after turnover. Monday, the Wild took a franchise-record 22 shots in the opening 20 minutes. This time, the first-period shot count was 14-3.

The big difference this time is the Wild’s persistent pressure earned a 1-0 lead 3:47 in — rather than 65:08 in — on Spurgeon’s first career playoff goal. Coyle’s third goal of the series was his first career playoff power-play goal and winning goal.

“We did what we wanted to do,” Parise said. “After two pretty disappointing games in Denver, you want to come back and protect your own home ice. Now we’ve got to win on the road.”





 

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Cincinnati - LP: J. Broxton 1 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: T. Watson 2
Minnesota - LP: T. May 1 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: M. Gonzalez 9
NY Yankees - WP: C. Capuano 6 FINAL
Toronto - LP: M. Buehrle 3
Philadelphia - LP: J. Diekman 1 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: J. deGrom 4
Boston - WP: A. Ranaudo 8 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: C. Archer 4
Miami - LP: C. Hatcher 2 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: D. Carpenter 5
Cleveland 4 Bottom 8th Inning
Kansas City 0
Detroit 7 Bottom 9th Inning
Chicago WSox 1
Texas - WP: S. Baker 13 FINAL
Houston - LP: B. Oberholtzer 6
Chicago Cubs - WP: N. Ramirez 7 FINAL
St. Louis - LP: P. Neshek 2
Colorado 0 Top 7th Inning
Arizona 1
Oakland 0 Bottom 5th Inning
LA Angels 0
Los Angeles 1 Top 5th Inning
San Diego 2
Washington 5 Top 5th Inning
Seattle 2
Milwaukee 1 Bottom 3rd Inning
San Francisco 5
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
(21) Texas A&M 52 FINAL
(9) So Carolina 28
Wake Forest 10 FINAL
ULM 17
Boise State 13 FINAL
(18) Ole Miss 35
Tulane 31 FINAL
Tulsa 38
Rutgers 41 FINAL
Washington St 38
Weber State 14 FINAL
(19) Arizona State 45
Temple 37 FINAL
Vanderbilt 7
BYU 35 FINAL
Connecticut 10
(6) Jacksonville St 7 FINAL
(8) Michigan State 45
Bowling Green 31 FINAL
Western Ky 59
TX-San Antonio 24 3rd Qtr 1:15
Houston 0
Colorado State 21 4th Qtr 13:10
Colorado 17
UNLV 3 2nd Qtr 12:22
Arizona 14
Penn State 8/30/14 7:30 AM
UCF
Troy 8/30/14 11:00 AM
UAB
(7) UCLA 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Virginia
Western Mich 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
(5) Ohio State 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Navy
Appalachian St 8/30/14 11:00 AM
Michigan
Ga Southern 8/30/14 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 8/30/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
West Virginia 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 8/30/14 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Marshall 8/30/14 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
UC Davis 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 8/30/14 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 8/30/14 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 8/30/14 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 8/30/14 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 8/30/14 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 8/30/14 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 8/30/14 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 8/30/14 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 8/30/14 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 8/30/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 8/30/14 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8/30/14 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 8/30/14 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 8/30/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Houston 3 2nd Half 1:00
Sporting Kansas City 1
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Minnesota 47 4th Qtr 10:00
Phoenix 67
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 local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close