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Wild postgame: Third line, Bryzgalov's save and an amazing crowd

Posted by: Michael Rand under Wild coaching Updated: May 10, 2014 - 12:17 AM

Yu Darvish flirted with a perfect game tonight before it tumbled away in controversy.

Where are we going with this? The Wild's third line ... that third line had a perfect game in Minnesota's 4-2 victory, as far as we're concerned.

The energy, physical play, speed and ability to turn all of it into great offense or defense ... crazy good. Erik Haula. Justin Fontaine ... and Matt Cooke. If there was any doubt about his importance ... now there is no doubt.

They were part of a near-perfect third period, too. We kept waiting for the high-flying Blackhawks to have a real surge. It never really materialized. That was as impressive as any goal.

Momentum, though, could have turned for good in the other direction at several points, and both are directly tied to goalie Ilya Bryzgalov. He left in a softie from a bad angle late in the first period, a goal that seemed to suck the life out of the building and the Wild. But Minnesota came back strong, eventually retaking leads of 2-1 and 3-2.

At that 3-2 mark, Minnesota had a non-goal reviewed and ruled still no goal. Not long after, Chicago had a breakaway. Giving up that many leads is tough -- just ask Colorado from Game 7. But Bryzgalov stayed true and hugged the post with an extended pad, thwarting the Blackhawks and preserving the precious lead. It was never tied again, of course.

Bryz is the ultimate streaky goalie. You never quite know what you're going to get, but you can get game-saving plays like that.

The win makes the Wild 5-0 at home in the playoffs. Coach Mike Yeo opened his postgame remarks by lauding the crowd, and he wasn't just blowing smoke. From the constant serenades of Corey Crawford to the roars of the third period, fans were relentless.  

We're stunned this series is 2-2 after the way the first two games went. We're even more stunned that we're starting to believe what Yeo said postgame: "We're not here to just try to make a series of it."

The Wild is here to win. And Minnesota just might.

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New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 37 2nd Qtr 3:57
New Orleans 43
Minnesota 30 2nd Qtr 4:16
Oklahoma City 42
Orlando 42 2nd Qtr 4:49
Memphis 55
Boston 8:00 PM
Utah
Denver 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Army 59 2nd Half 2:15
American Univ 63
Wright State 56 2nd Half 2:53
Detroit 47
Syracuse 75 2nd Half 1:24
North Carolina 84
Cleveland State 56 2nd Half 0:17
Oakland 59
Delaware State 53 2nd Half 0:33
NC Central 51
High Point 63 FINAL
Presbyterian 54
Howard 25 2nd Half 20:00
Bethune-Cookman 27
Coppin State 39 2nd Half
NC A&T 39
Nicholls 41 2nd Half 9:12
Northwestern St 64
Hampton 31 2nd Half 12:53
SC State 41
Gardner-Webb 30 2nd Half
Campbell 37
MD-Eastern Shore 18 1st Half 7:55
Florida A&M 14
Stephen F Austin 36 2nd Half
Lamar 21
Central Arkansas 33 2nd Half
New Orleans 50
Norfolk State 31 2nd Half
Savannah State 21
TX A&M-CC 31 2nd Half
SE Louisiana 32
Sam Houston St 42 1st Half 1:42
Abilene Christian 25
McNeese State 46 2nd Half
Incarnate Word 34
Milwaukee 16 2nd Half
Valparaiso 39
Alcorn State 7:30 PM
Alabama A&M
Southern U 7:30 PM
Alabama State
Prairie View 8:00 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Texas 8:00 PM
Iowa State
Texas Southern 8:00 PM
Miss Valley St
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Angelo State 55 FINAL
Abilene Christian 70
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 58 FINAL
Alabama A&M 55
Southern U 53 FINAL
Alabama State 49
Texas Southern 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 52
Robert Morris 68 FINAL
Mount St Marys 44
East Tenn St 72 FINAL
Mercer 70
Wofford 56 FINAL
Furman 58
Morehead St 64 FINAL
Tenn Tech 54
Illinois 57 FINAL
Michigan 70
(12) Texas A&M 51 2nd Half 4:52
(1) South Carolina 71
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 8:00 PM
Auburn
(15) Nebraska 8:00 PM
(20) Iowa
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