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Postgame Hat Trick: Wild 2, Senators 0

Rask's third-period goal lifts Minnesota to first win of season Monday in Ottawa

by Dan Myers @mnwildscribe /'s Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild's 2-0 win against the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre in Kanata, Ontario on Monday afternoon:

1. If you had Victor Rask in Monday's edition of #mnwildfirst, well done.

It took awhile, but Rask gave the Wild the lead just shy of the midway point of the third period, breaking a scoreless tie in the process.

Solid work along the wall by Jordan Greenway kept the Senators fumbling the puck just long enough for Rask to scoop it up near the left face-off circle and pick the top left corner on Ottawa goaltender Craig Anderson. 

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

It was a goal scorer's kind of goal ... not a lot of room to shoot, but Rask did anyway, going short side, top ched on the veteran netminder.

Rask was a healthy scratch the first three games of the season, but tallied an assist in Saturday's home opener and then a goal on Monday. It was his third goal in 25 games in a Wild sweater and first game-winning goal since Jan. 30, 2018 ... ironically, against the Ottawa Senators when he played for the Carolina Hurricanes.

2. Goaltender Alex Stalock earned his first start of the season and was outstanding. 

Ottawa didn't create much in the way of grade-A scoring chances, but Stalock made all the saves he had to in securing his sixth career shutout and first since Dec. 14, 2017, when he made 28 saves against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Xcel Energy Center.

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

3. Perhaps the highlight of a sleepy first period for both teams was Stalock going on a casual afternoon skate.

As Senators fans were settling into their seats a few minutes into the contest, the puck crept towards the Wild's defensive blue line when Stalock bolted from the crease. 

The South St. Paul native, who is fearless when it comes to playing the puck, went all the way to a few feet of the Wild bench to corral it. With pressure coming, Stalock deftly flipped the puck off the glass behind the Wild coaching staff, getting a stoppage.

Because the puck never reached the seats, Stalock was not called for delay of game. Instead, it was just a faceoff in the defensive zone. 

It's safe to safe Stalock caught more guff from Wild coach Bruce Boudreau than he did from officials. The puck just missed striking the coach, who was only a few feet away. 

No harm, no foul on the play. But it certainly was an entertaining moment in the game. 

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