The Wild’s latest meltdown finally pushed head coach Bruce Boudreau over the edge.
Trailing Winnipeg 4-0 early in the second period Sunday in Winnipeg, the Wild stormed back with four straight goals to tie the game going into the third. All for not because they lost 5-4. After the game, Boudreau was asked if he was encouraged by the comeback.
“Well, you know, this isn’t a good day because I’m going to say something stupid,” answered Boudreau (listen to the audio via Pondcast). “So I don’t want to answer that question.’’
Seconds later, a reporter asked Boudreau if the comeback showed “resiliency.”
“Hey listen,” Boudreau snapped. “We stunk in the first. We’d better come back in the second. Holy crap, it’s not resiliency. You’re making us sound like we’re good. I’m done.’’
Boudreau walked away from his press conference less than 30 seconds into it.
According to Kent Youngblood, there was a players-only meeting after the game.
Players held closed-door meeting after game.
— Kent Youngblood (@BloodStrib) March 20, 2017
Two weeks ago the Wild were 42-15-6, holding a one point lead on Chicago for the Western Conference and Central Division lead. Today the Wild are 43-22-6, seven points behind the Blackhawks, who clinched a playoff spot on Sunday a powerful comeback win over Colorado.
Chicago scored three goals in 34 seconds en route to a five-goal third period. They are an incredible 17-3-0 since Feb. 1.
Minnesota is almost certainly going to finish second in the Central, which would give them home ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs against St. Louis or Nashville (the third place team in the division). If they’re good enough to advance to the second round, they’ll likely be in Chicago where they’ve lost eight consecutive playoff games.
The Wild’s 48 shots on goal Sunday was a franchise record on the road. What’s killing them are slow starts and soft goals allowed.
In his last five starts, Devan Dubnyk has allowed 16 goals with a save percentage of .862. He’s stopped just 100 of 116 shots.
That’s the problem and that needs to get fixed as soon as possible.