Minnesota Wild: Wild Lose Day 2 in Traverse City

BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Dmitry Sokolov poses for a portrait after being selected 196th overall by the Minnesota Wild during the 2016 NHL Draft at First Niagara Center on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)
BUFFALO, NY - JUNE 25: Dmitry Sokolov poses for a portrait after being selected 196th overall by the Minnesota Wild during the 2016 NHL Draft at First Niagara Center on June 25, 2016 in Buffalo, New York. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Day 2 in Traverse City did not go as well as Day 1. The Minnesota Wild fell to the New York Rangers by the same 4-2 score from the night before. We’re following the tournament as best we can to give you the quick takeaways from each game.

This game was unfortunately not streamed in any way I could find in my region, so these takeaways are based off of what I could find for scoreboard tracking and Twitter comments from Minnesota Wild fans during the game.

The Minnesota Wild were completely outmatched early in this game, losing the speed and skill matchup to the Rangers prospects. Early penalty trouble cost them any momentum, and the Rangers never really let up until they had a 3-0 lead.

Gerry Fitzgerald and Jordan Greenway took some time to get going in this game, but when they did they continued their impressive start to this tournament. Dmitri Sokolov followed up his impressive first game with another powerplay goal.

Gerry Fitzgerald

Fitzgerald has been an impressive revelation in this tournament. He has me excited to see if this play is only a result of playing beside Greenway, or if this can translate to a wonderful rookie season with the Iowa Wild.

He recorded his third point of the tournament on a wonderful assist to setup Greenway with the Wild’s second goal. He then came oh-so-close to tying the game late in the third period on a one-timer. The former child movie star is inching himself toward a possible pro-hockey career.

Jordan Greenway

Greenway is still the best Wild player on the ice. There’s not even a question about it. He scored his first goal of the tournament midway through the 3rd period on the feed from Fitzgerald, and could have had one earlier in the 2nd period if not for a strong save from the Rangers goalie.

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Greenway is doing all he can to carry this team through the tournament, but obviously he cannot do it all alone. If the rest of the team cannot get going, it will be interesting to see how successful the Iowa Wild can be without him this fall.

Dmitri Sokolov

I was impressed with the puck movement of Sokolov in Game 1, but in Game 2 his biggest contribution came in the form of the team’s first goal. Late in the second period, Sokolov got the puck on a feed from Mason Shaw and snuck the puck in on a wraparound.

He’s establishing himself as someone who could turn into a power play specialist. His even strength game leaves something to be desired, and depending where coach Tim Army places the most value it could end up costing him power play time if his even strength play doesn’t improve.

Additional Notes

2017 4th round pick Mason Shaw recorded his first point of the tournament on the setup to Sokolov. He is 1 year removed from a torn ACL, and looks to be getting himself comfortable with the speed of the game with more time on the ice.

Connor Dewar had a breakaway chance turned away in the 3rd that would have been the tying goal. He isn’t standing out among the rest of the team, but has been doing enough with the puck on his stick to be noticed when he has it. Appeared to bounce back fine from the big hit he took on Day 1.

Dereck Baribeau got the start in net, and was outmatched early. He allowed 3 goals on 15 shots in the first half of the game, but did manage to turn it around and keep the team in the game during the late comeback attempt.

New York Rangers goalie prospect Jeremy Brodeur is the son of the legendary Martin Brodeur, and played his high school hockey at Shattuck-St.Mary’s in Minnesota. He was not challenged much early, but did a great job holding the lead when the Wild came on late. I give him top honours among the Rangers prospects in the game.

The Minnesota Wild made some lineup changes in this game. With Baribeau as the starter, Kaapo Kahkonen sat out and camp invitee Matthew Greenfield was the backup. I would expect Greenfield would get the start in game 3.

Twin brother forwards Drake Pilon and Darian Pilon, along with defensemen Josh Thrower and 2017 pick Jacob Golden all sat out. Invites Mathieu Foget and Sam Bitten filled in at forward, while Tate Olson and Marc-Olivier Duquette took the defense spots.

Next. 3 Wild Rookies Primed for Breakout Seasons. dark

With the loss, the Wild and Rangers are now each 1-1 in the tournament. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Dallas Stars Saturday to make a 4 way tie in the Ted Lindsay division. If the Wild and Red Wings each win on Day 3, your Minnesota Wild will be in the 1st Place game on Tuesday.

For more info, visit NHL.com’s coverage of the Traverse City Tournament. Thanks to Twitter user @CreaseandAssist for the live game coverage.