It was pretty obvious early on that the Ducks were going to beat the Wild Wednesday night.
The Wild came out strong the first five minutes, but Jean-Sebastien Giguere was his usual unstoppable self.
The Wild are in a tough place. They weren’t able to beat them with their patient, defense-centric system in the first two games, so coach Jacques Lemaire decided to explore some other systems that have been popular in the NHL over the years. He put some muscle into the line-up. He played his forwards down low at the expense of lots of odd man rushes. He basically undid his own carefully crafted if horribly boring system to try and break Giguere.
But Giguere might be unbreakable.
Like I said, I knew Anaheim would win but I wanted to see if Giguere would get another shut-out. The series is all about Giguere now. Does he have any limits? The Wild had some chances and he stopped them all.
ABC reported (and I can’t find it in print), that in game five (or was it seven?) of the Wild’s series with Vancouver, one of the Canucks told a Wild player to pack his golf bags since he would soon be off for the rest of the summer. This reportedly infuriated the Wild, leading to their miraculous comeback against the Canucks. Now maybe the Wild have nothing to get angry about — especially playing a fellow underdog.
It’s a bad combination. An unbreakable goalie meeting a team whose spirit is broken. The Wild aren’t playing for a win in game four. They’re playing for a goal. Just one goal.