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game recap

Wild get first win of season, shut out Senators

Stalock makes 26 saves in first start, Rask breaks tie for Minnesota in third period

by Callum Fraser / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Stalock's 26-save shutout

MIN@OTT: Stalock shuts out Senators with 26 saves

Alex Stalock stopped all 26 shots he faced to help the Wild defeat the Senators, 2-0, and record his sixth career shutout

  • 01:13 •

OTTAWA -- Alex Stalock made 26 saves for the Minnesota Wild in their first win of the season, 2-0 against the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre on Monday.

"I've just been in practice working hard," said Stalock, who made his first start of the season. "I know my role here, and that's to go in and give the team a chance to win when I get the chance. It happened to be my night, and we played a great game. We talked about limiting minute breakdowns or two-minute breakdowns, that's what's kind of been costing us all year. I think, tonight, we didn't have one lull where we broke down and gave them momentum."

Victor Rask and Zach Parise scored for Minnesota (1-4-0), which had the worst start to a season in its history.

 

[WATCH: All Wild vs. Senators highlights]

 

"I think those are the kind of games we're going to have to win, 6-5 is probably not in our repertoire," Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. "But 2-1, 3-1, if we can do that a lot, then we'll be a successful team.

"I think the biggest thing was commitment to playing team defense. When the puck was in our zone, it was stops and starts, and we gave up chances, but you're going to give up chances every game to an NHL team. It's a good start. I don't want to put anyone down, but we're not going to score five goals every game. We've got to hold teams to one or two, and if you do that, you usually have success."

Video: MIN@OTT: Stalock lays out to rob Namestnikov

Craig Anderson made 33 saves for Ottawa (1-4-0), which was 0-for-5 on the power play and has yet to score with the man-advantage this season (0-for-17).

"We'll figure it out," Anderson said of their inability to score. "It's just a matter of getting the reps in and getting that confidence. We've got some skilled players, some great players, and it just hasn't clicked for us yet. It's only a matter of time, right? Keep working at it. Tonight wasn't our power play's night, but maybe the next game will be."

Rask gave the Wild a 1-0 lead at 9:23 of the third period with a wrist shot short side from low in the left face-off circle after winning a puck battle with Senators forward Jean-Gabriel Pageau.

"I'm not sure if we've had the lead at all this year," Parise said. "So to get the lead, I think we were pretty comfortable with how we were playing without the puck. So to get that one, I think we were pretty confident we could lock it down and maybe get that second one."

Parise scored into an empty net at 17:41 for the 2-0 final.

"At this point, it didn't matter how it happened, we needed to get into that win column," Parise said. "Fortunately, we did tonight. We know we've got a tough game tomorrow against [the] Toronto [Maple Leafs], but there is a sense of relief that we won a game."

Video: MIN@OTT: Rask roofs short-side wrister in close

 

They said it

"[In a 7-4 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday and a 5-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday], there were just a lot of missed assignments, defensively, that wound up in our net. And they're going to happen. Every game, there's going to be breakdowns defensively, but it was happening a little too much and it was costing us. We couldn't get ourselves back in time, and at the same time, we were having trouble finding the back of the net. It was a bad combination." -- Wild forward Zach Parise

"If you're not going to score (on the power play), so be it. There's a lot of good penalty kills in this league, a lot of guys willing to eat shots when they're [on the ice]. But we've got to find ways to generate some momentum and get a bit of a high off it, get them back on their heels, and turn it into some kind of production." -- Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki

"[The Wild are] a team that puts the puck in [the offensive zone]. They're big, they're strong, they get above you, and they don't give you very much. You've got to be willing to be patient, and we weren't patient enough. Special teams aside, we started to turn pucks over and we weren't mature enough to continue to put it in [the offensive zone] like they were and try to grind out a low-scoring game tonight." -- Senators coach D.J. Smith

 

Need to know

Boudreau is one win from tying Billy Reay (542) for 23rd in NHL history. … Stalock's shutout was his sixth in the NHL. ... Boudreau said he hopes Mats Zuccarello (lower-body injury) will miss "no longer than a week." After the Wild earlier announced that the forward was out for their three-game road trip, Boudreau said after the game that Zuccarello could join them before their game at the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday. … Smith said Senators forward Artem Anisimov (lower-body injury) will likely play Thursday at the Vegas Golden Knights.

 

What's next

Wild: At the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; TSN4, FS-N, FS-WI, NHL.TV)

Senators: At the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, ATTSN-RM, TSN5, RDS, NHL.TV)

Video: Stalock, Wild shut out Senators, 2-0

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