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Postgame Hat Trick: Rangers 3, Wild 2 (OT)

Minnesota can't hold late lead again, falls moments into overtime in loss at MSG on Monday night

by Dan Myers @mnwildscribe /'s Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild's 3-2 overtime loss against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Monday night:

1. Another game, another overtime for the Wild.

For the second time on this eastern trip, Minnesota led the game late in regulation. Unfortunately, for the second time, it allowed the tying goal in the final minutes. 

The good news for the Wild is it salvaged a point in the game, and has now earned at least a point in six consecutive games. 

The bad news is, obviously, Minnesota has now left a couple more points on the table as it tries to claw its way up the standings. 

2. Alex Stalock deserved better.

The Wild goaltender was mostly outstanding on Tuesday night, finishing with 28 saves. There was nothing he could do on Chris Kreider's tying goal late, as the puck changed directions at least two or three times on its way to the net. 

Stalock has done his part during the Wild's points streak, but has not been able to stack up the victories that would otherwise back that up.

3. Mats Zuccarello returned to New York for the first time. 

You could tell there were going to be plenty of Mats fans in the arena from the moment the bus pulled up to the arena three hours prior. Waiting were dozens of fans in old Rangers Zuccarello sweaters. 

Tweet from @Ryan_Carter22: Zuccarello getting a nice applause as he leaves the ice for warmup. Certainly a fan favorite here in NYC.

In parts of nine seasons with the Rangers, there's no doubt the impression he left on fans in New York. This isn't an easy town to become a fan favorite. He certainly accomplished that, and it made his return to the city even more special.

Tweet from @mnwild: Mats appreciation post.#mnwild

As the Wild took the ice for warmups, hundreds of Rangers fans circled the Minnesota end, with periodic chants of "Zuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuc" raining down. As warmups wrapped up, Zuccarello and Ryan Hartman were the final two on the ice. Hartman fed Zuccarello a final pass and exited stage left, leaving the former Ranger on the ice for a standing ovation from those that had gathered. With a quick wave to the crowd, Zuccarello went back to the dressing room.

Tweet from @NHL: Mats Zuccarello (@zuccarello36) is absolutely loved in New York. 🗽

And that was just the end of warmups.

Tweet from @fsnorth: .@zuccarello36 is feeling the love in his return to Madison Square Garden

The official video welcome back for Zuccarello came during the first TV timeout, and it drew 20,000 fans to their feet for a full standing ovation. 

Tweet from @NYRangers: Forever our favorite Norwegian. Thank you for the memories, Zucc!

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