Game Recap: Minnesota Wild vs. Calgary Flames | 01/02/2024

Credit: Sergei Belski-USA Today SPorts

The Minnesota Wild lost to the Calgary Flames at home 3-1 during Tuesday’s game. The Wild battled hard, but their depleted lineup was not able to get the offensive push that they needed to beat the Flames.

Quick Recap

Final Score: 3-1 Flames

PIMS: 12 minutes combined, despite plenty of physicality and scrums

Shots on goal: 33-29 Flames

Notable Moments: Pat Maroon’s Silky Mitts, Depleted Lineup Pushes Hard

Vibes Report: 6/10. The injuries brought it down, but there were plenty of silly moments to bring it back up a little. For more on the vibes along with videos, scroll down to the end of the article.

The biggest story of this game was the interesting-looking lineup that the Wild had to put on the ice. The injuries keep piling up for the Wild and unfortunately, it’s some of the most impactful players who are out of the lineup. Defenseman Jonas Brodin and forward Mats Zuccarello were already out of the lineup. Then forwards Kirill Kaprizov and Vinni Lettieri along with goalie Filip Gustavsson were injured during the weekend series against the Winnipeg Jets. Forward Marcus Foligno was a game-time decision, but he too sat out with an injury last night.

This led to a strange lineup that included five players who normally play for the Iowa Wild AHL team. Nic Petan, Jake Lucchini, and Sammy Walker were all part of the forward group. They are the three leading scorers for the Iowa Wild this year. Dakota Mermis, who has become a regular sight in the NHL lineup, is technically the captain of the Iowa Wild. And Zane McIntyre is currently playing backup for Marc-Andre Fleury.

Despite the odd-looking lineup, the Wild managed to put good pressure on the Flames, especially during the second and third periods. There were plenty of hits both ways (19 for each team) and the Flames were forced to block a significant 24 shots on goal.

Calgary put the first point on the board almost halfway through the first period during a four-on-four with both Nazem Kadri and Matt Boldy in the box. Then, with less than a minute left in the first, Jonathan Huberdeau put the Flames up 2-0. This was made worse with the realization that captain Jared Spurgeon, who was playing in only his third game since returning from injury, had not played the last few shifts of the period.

Despite the deflating 2-0 score as the WIld came out for the second period, they were able to come out strong. Spurgeon was back on the bench, letting fans sigh in relief. Pat Maroon was the player who finally got the Wild on the board with a beautiful passing sequence from Marco Rossi and Petan. 

During the second period, the Wild were visibly putting more pucks at least in the direction of the net. The Wild had to kill their first penalty at the end of the second and they looked amazing doing it. Joel Eriksson Ek won two very important faceoffs that led to immediate clears. Fleury was also in top form during the penalty kill.

The third period brought two power-play chances for the Wild. Despite the absences, the power play was clicking well. Unfortunately, they still couldn’t get it past goalie Jacob Markstrom. The Wild outshot the Flames 17-10 during the third in a desperate bid to tie up the score. Head Coach John Hynes pulled Fleury out of the goal toward the end of the third, but the Flames ended up getting an empty net goal to finish the game 3-1.

Vibes Breakdown

This game had some fun moments that helped level out the worry about the numerous team injuries. At one point, Ek was in his usual place (sharing the blue paint with the opposing goalie) when the play started heading in the other direction. Somehow, he ended up tangled with the goalie and in his haste, pulled Markstrom several feet down the ice before getting his stick back.

Then, Kadri took a run at Connor Dewar, probably assuming he could easily smash Dewar into the boards. Instead, Dewar showed the Flames why they call him Big Dew by being only minimally affected while Kadri took a windmilling fall.

But the best of all was Brandon Duhaime‘s desperate dive to make sure he wasn’t offsides. Falling with a Flames player just inside the blue line, the puck exited. But before Duhaime could get up, the puck started to make it’s way back into the Wild’s offensive zone. So Duhaime did what he had to do: take a flying leap over the Flames player and back into the neutral zone.

For Minnesota Wild news, vibes, and more, make sure to listen to the latest episode of Her Wild Side Hockey Podcast. Updated multiple times weekly, there is something for everyone.

Hockey, Hockey, Everywhere! That's Why I've Been So Busy! Her Wild Side Hockey Podcast

In this episode, Mikki talks about the abundance of amazing hockey between the NHL Playoffs and the IIHF Men's World Championships. She also touches on a few fun facts and rambles a bit too much after too many days between podcast episodes. Links:Her Wild Side Merch Shop!Ticketmaster Affiliate LinkSocial Media:TwitterInstagramFacebookFor more from us, visit Inside The RinkHow to support us and our sponsors:Columbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR   
  1. Hockey, Hockey, Everywhere! That's Why I've Been So Busy!
  2. It's The Playoffs, Baby!
  3. Hockey Culture is Disgusting and Needs to Change
  4. A Post-Mortem for the MN Wild Season
  5. Trading Gustavsson Would Be the Dumbest Idea Ever

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

NHL Playoff Preview: Edmonton Oilers vs. Dallas Stars | Round 3, Game 1 | 05/23/2024

I often see a commercial on the Hockey Night In Canada broadcast for Truly Hard Seltzer drinks. In it, two women are at a bar watching a Playoff game. There is a close-up shot of one of the women wearing an Oilers jersey and screaming for joy. On Monday night, when Game 7 was over, […]

Read More

PHOTOS: Grand Rapids Griffins vs. Milwaukee Admirals – 05/20/2024

MILWAUKEE, Wisc.– On Monday night at UM-Panther Arena, the Milwaukee Admirals faced off against the Grand Rapids Griffins in Game 2 of the Central Division Finals of the Calder Cup Playoffs—Milwaukee with hopes of tying up the series, having lost in Game 1. The Admirals took a 2-0 lead in the first period, scoring one […]

Read More
Christian Humphreys, USNTDP (Rena Laverty / USA Hockey’s NTDP)

2024 NHL Draft Prospect Profile: Christian Humphreys

Christian Humphreys has shown consistent performance as a two-way forward. Standing at 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, he is a promising prospect who has the potential to exceed expectations and become a steal in the draft.

Read More