Both of the afternoon games yesterday followed a similar pattern. We had two 1 vs. 8 matchups with the lower seed vastly outplaying the higher ranked team and both games going to overtime. The difference between the two games is unlike the Islanders, the Wild actually got rewarded for their efforts and were able to finish off the Blackhawks in overtime to stay alive in the series. After looking outmatched in Game Two, the one silver lining I could come up with for the Wild is that the next two games would be at home and could possibly come out stronger then and this is exactly what happened as Minnesota played their best game of the series and got a well-deserved OT win.
Not going to sugarcoat this, the Wild have been a bad team at even strength so I was a little surprise to see them outshoot the Hawks 31-24 at evens today and was even more surprised that they limited Chicago's high-powered offense to only 11 total scoring chances today. Minnesota doesn't have the best depth or a lot of offense, but they had a good game-plan for limiting Chicago's offense today. They were able to shut them down in the neutral zone, played physical against their top forwards and kept most of their shots to the outside. I'm not sure how much of it had to do with the Blackhawks not playing up to their ability (they looked flat for about 50 minutes) but the Wild were the better team yesterday and now have some hope in this series.no comments