The Minnesota Wild and Vancouver Canucks are tied in a 1-1 series of the Stanley Cup Qualifiers. The Wild won Game 1 and the Canucks won Game 2. The game was played at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta. Here’s a recap of both games between the Wild and Canucks.
Game 1: Minnesota controlled most of this period sustaining offensive pressure in the Canuck’s zone. The Wild also scored an early power-play goal 2:50 into the period from forward Kevin Fiala. The Canucks, however, had momentum shift their way as well for about five minutes in the period before gaining it again the last five minutes of the period. Both goaltenders from both teams made outstanding saves despite Canucks goaltender Jacob Markstrom letting one goal in.
Minnesota went into the second period with a 1-0 lead.
Game 2: This was a tale of two games for Vancouver. Just like Game 1, there was an early goal but not from Minnesota. This time, the Canucks scored the game’s first goal from forward Tanner Pearson. Pearson scored in the first 24 seconds of the game. From that point on, the Canucks took control of this period up until the 2:44 mark of the period. Wild forward Luke Kunin tied the game scoring a shorthanded goal. Even though the Canucks were in control of this period, they only outshot the Wild 10-9.
Vancouver went into the second period with a 1-0 lead.
Game 1: Vancouver came out of the intermission looking to tie the game early in the period. Canucks defenseman Quinn Hughes came close to tying the game but Wild goaltender Alex Stalock saved both shots. The Wild took advantage of those saves by starting to gain momentum towards the midpoint of the period. And, it paid off. Minnesota went on a power play and converted on it. Wild forward Jared Spurgeon scored the team’s and game’s second goal on the power play. The Canucks tried to answer back by making a late push but to no avail.
Minnesota went into the third period with a 2-0 lead.
Game 2: And, just like last period, the Canucks got another early goal. This time from Canucks forward J.T. Miller. Miller scored just three minutes into the period. The Wild were able to gain some momentum but Canucks forward Brock Boeser scored about halfway through the period. However, the Wild was able to pick up some momentum back in their favor but they couldn’t do anything with it. Vancouver started to make a late push to try to extend their lead to three but Stalock kept things tight around the net.
Vancouver went into the third period with a 3-1 lead.
Game 1: It was all Minnesota this period though Vancouver had some decent scoring chances. What kept the Canucks in the game was Markstrom not allowing any goals besides the empty netter from Spurgeon. The Wild outshot the Canucks 11-4 during this period even though the Wild was being outshot 10-8 by the Canucks.
Minnesota won the game 3-0 and took the series lead 1-0.
Game 2: Minnesota got caught up with lots of penalties before the halfway mark of the period. Vancouver was able to convert on one of their three power plays this period from the stick of captain Bo Horvat. But, Horvat’s goal didn’t faze the Wild as they were on a mission to score another goal as soon as possible. Though the Canucks were the more dominant at this point, the Wild dominated the 10 minutes or so of the game. They outshot the Canucks 16-8 scoring on two of their shots. Fiala scored both Wild goals this period within the final 2:30 of the game. Unfortunately, Minnesota didn’t have enough to have a miracle shot to force the game to overtime.
Vancouver held on and won the game 4-3. They also tied the series 1-1.
What wasn’t told in these recaps is how physical this game was especially after a play was stopped. Both teams got into scrambles at various times during the game. With how this series is being played out so far, Game 3 should be an interesting game.
Three Stars of the Game
Third Star: Kevin Fiala (1 goal)
Second Star: Jared Spurgeon (2 goals, 1 assist)
First Star: Alex Stalock (28 saves)
Third Star: Kevin Fiala (2 goals)
Second Star: Bo Horvat (1 goal, 1 assist)
First Star: J.T. Miller (1 goal, 1 assist)
Game 3 of the Wild-Canucks series is on Aug. 6 at 2:30 pm EST.