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Continued: Scoggins: Bryzgalov got sharper after breakaway save

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: May 10, 2014 - 5:45 AM

That story angle took a hiatus after Bryzgalov pitched a shutout in a 4-0 victory in Game 3. It didn’t come up again after Game 4.

“There were a lot of questions, and we believed in Bryz,” Yeo said. “We knew what he was capable of, but the questions start to grow in numbers and the attention toward that continues to grow.”

The criticism of Bryzgalov had reached a point that he became the focus of every failure when, in reality, some of the goals he allowed in the first two games were directly related to defensive breakdowns. But Bryzgalov’s shaky moments make him an easy target and create a level of anxiety.

However, it’s a little unrealistic, and unfair, to expect Bryzgalov to be something he’s not — a savior. He arrived at the trade deadline as a worst-case-scenario option.

Privately, the Wild officials probably are crossing their fingers that Bryzgalov can hold up or, even better, recapture the way he played late in the regular season. This situation was not the team’s plan, but it’s become its reality.

The Wild has to ride with Bryz and hope he continues to play the way he did the final two periods Friday.

“What I like about Bryz right now is he’s just part of the team,” Yeo said. “He’s doing everything he can for his teammates. All he does is praise his teammates. For us, that makes us want to play harder for him.”

 

Chip Scoggins chip.scoggins@startribune.com

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