Blues take 2-0 series lead with 2-1 win over Wild

The Wild lost game three to St. Louis 3-1 and now are facing the reality of getting swept.

Despite this, Blues goalie Jake Allen still sees room for improvement.

Jake Guentzel had a hat trick, including a goal at 13:10 of overtime, to lift the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 5-4 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday night and give them a 3-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.

"We're doing a pretty good job of that", Allen said of the Blues ability to not get too far ahead of themselves thinking about their position in the series. "We just can't score right now".

Allen has been the star of the first three games.

With frustration mounting, Minnesota got a break in the form of back-to-back penalties on St. Louis, which gave the Wild 85 seconds of a five-on-three power play.

"In reality, no one expects us, except the group that we have, to win", Boudreau said. "They pushed really hard and put us on our heels a bit and we grinded and we got it done. a huge win for us".

Colton Parayko gave the Blues the early lead just 3:25 into the opening period as he beat goalie Devan Dubnyk with a wrist shot after a flawless set up by Patrik Berglund. In 154 career games, including 18 in the playoffs, the 23-year-old defenseman has just seven goals.

Apparently, it is more comforting to pad the walls at home instead of banging their heads in a St. Louis hotel room for a few days agonizing over how this magnificent season of Stanley Cup aspirations is swirling down the drain of an terrible week. "I saw the puck squirting free and I tried to jump and poke it and I think my shaft hit the post and propelled the puck out of the net". Schwartz snapped a 1-1 tie shortly after Minnesota got a goal from Charlie Coyle on Sunday afternoon.

Game 1 in Minnesota was a low scoring affair with recalled Blues forward Vladimir Sobotka giving the visitors a 1-0 lead midway through the second period before Zach Parise tied things up with just 22 seconds remaining in the game.

St. Louis Blues coach Mike Yeo said before the start of his team's series against the Minnesota Wild that one player wouldn't win or lose the series for his team. Not only did the Blues limit Minnesota's shots on goal, but they also contained them at even strength.

Pekka Rinne was great again. "When you get guys in front of the net, it's hard to save the puck when you can't see it".

The Predators are singing a sweet tune on their way home to Music City, threatening to play the Chicago Blackhawks right out of the postseason.

"One period at a time, you must win".

Each team had a power play in the scoreless first period.

The Predators became the fifth National Hockey League team to begin a postseason with consecutive road shutouts, joining Detroit (1936), Buffalo (1983), New Jersey (1995) and Toronto (2001). "We've got to regroup". But it was more of the same for the Blackhawks, who once again looked out of sync against the Predators' active defense. "He's been phenomenal. It's fun to watch, fun to be a part of". "You live with this 24 hours". Minnesota will not beat Allen with perimeter shots or by firing pucks into his chest, as Spurgeon did late in Game 2. It has dropped six in a row dating to the end of the regular season. No goals for Mikael Granlund, Eric Staal and Mikko Koivu. "Obviously everybody's trying to score that goal".

Koivu was victimized with 2:12 remaining in overtime when 39-goal scorer Vladimir Tarasenko pirouetted in the right faceoff circle to shed Minnesota's best defensive forward and fed streaking defenseman Joel Edmundson for the victor.

The Blackhawks, who finished with a Western Conference-best 109 points this year, took the last four of their five meetings with the Predators during the regular season. Allen took the loot in Game 1, and the Blues were sheepishly counting it the day after. But they would probably, depending on the time in the game, they would probably have to open up a little more.

The team that started the Stanley Cup playoffs with the lowest odds to win it all was returning to its home arena with a 2-0 series lead. Nino Niederreiter tried to reach through traffic and poke in the loose puck, but Parise tried to do the same and inadvertently knocked it backward just before it reached the goal line.

The Predators added two more in the second.

- Pekka Rinne has more points (2 assists) than the entire Blackhawks roster combined. Sissons then knocked in his own rebound with 7 minutes left.

Cam Atkinson had two goals for Columbus, and Zach Werenski and Brandon Dubinsky also scored.

"It was good to get a balance", Laviolette said. "We have to be better".

Ottawa at Boston, 6 p.m.

  • Angelo Rivera