The Minnesota Wild dominated the Calgary Flames Saturday night…for the first few minutes of the game. Then their fire extinguishers ran out.
A 0-0 game into the third period, the Flames quickly overcame the Wild with Lance Bouma scoring his first NHL goal just 2:02 into the period.
However, the big story of the night occurred a few minutes later at 8:33 when perennial Wild-killer Jarome Iginla scored his 500th career goal on a double deflection ending with the puck shooting off the skate of Mikko Koivu past Niklas Backstrom and into the Wild net. From there, a careless boarding penalty by Devin Setoguchi led to the 17th goal of the season by Curtis Glencross and the Flames pulled ahead by 3.
Dany Heatley tried to reignite the Wild with a goal on a delayed penalty shortly thereafter, but after Mikka Kiprusoff almost had to answer for robbery charges against Kyle Brodziak and Setoguchi, the Wild’s energy deflated for the last time of the evening and 3-1 was where it remained at the final horn.
In his post-game presser, Wild head coach Mike Yeo referred to his team as a “fragile group” right now. It was obvious that the confidence of just 5 weeks ago was sorely lacking, with no consistency to the forecheck yet again and a defense that was…to say it kindly…out of sync.
Watch later today for an in-depth analysis of where things went wrong for the Wild, and a shorter discussion of where they went right. I know I promised a discussion of the realignment, but since things have gone a bit sideways lately, I’ve been putting it off. I’ll get into my thoughts on the recent delay as well. Suffice it to say, Don Fehr is not on my Christmas card list.