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Postgame Hat Trick: Wild 6, Blues 2

Three takeaways from the Wild's victory in St. Louis on Tuesday night

by Dan Myers @DanMyers /'s Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild's 6-2 win against the St. Louis Blues at Scottrade Center in St. Louis on Tuesday night:

1. It couldn't have been a worse start for the Wild. But that didn't keep the team down long.

When Jaden Schwartz potted a rebound goal just 45 seconds into the contest, Minnesota was already behind the eight ball. Road games haven't been a point of strength for the team this season, and fighting back from an early deficit makes that hill an even taller one.

But to the Wild's credit, it didn't take long to answer. 

On the very next shift, defenseman Gustav Olofsson was oh-so-close to his first NHL goal, rifling a shot off the post. But the puck deflected right to Nino Niederreiter, who fired it past Carter Hutton, tying the game at 2:02. 

Video: MIN@STL: Niederreiter pots early rebound to tie game

But the Wild didn't stop there.

Minnesota slowly built momentum over the course of the period, getting goals from Marcus Foligno and a power-play goal by Mikko Koivu 1:14 apart later in the frame to take a two-goal advantage into intermission. 

Video: MIN@STL: Koivu whips PPG past Hutton on his backhand

2. Minnesota once again showed off its outstanding offensive depth.

All three of the Wild's first-period goals came from different lines, as Niederreiter got the top group going on assists from Olofsson and Eric Staal. 

Foligno's goal came after a great veteran play by Daniel Winnik in the corner, who won a puck battle and saw the rangy winger near the crease. Instead of trying a fancy pass, Winnik simply threw the puck into the blue paint and let the powerful Foligno do the rest. He banged away at the puck until it finally crossed the goal line for his fifth goal of the 2017-18 campaign. 

Video: MIN@STL: Foligno taps home loose puck with one hand

Minnesota's third goal was a power-play goal and snapped Koivu's 11-game goal drought. Mikael Granlund and Ryan Suter tallied assists on the goal, which was the Wild's ninth power-play goal in its past nine games.

3. Offense wasn't just limited to the forwards either.

After Jason Zucker extended the Wild's lead to 4-1 almost 10 minutes into the second, Zucker fed defenseman Matt Dumba for a wicked one-timer that eluded Blues goaltender Jake Allen, who took over for Hutton at the beginning of the period. 

Video: MIN@STL: Dumba one-times Zucker's feed past Allen

The Wild entered the game tied for first in the NHL in points from its blueliners this season. Defensemen were active again on Tuesday, as Dumba scored a goal and Olofsson, Suter and Jared Spurgeon tallied assists. 

On the year, Wild defensemen have scored 31 goals and 96 assists for 127 points, now most in the League.


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