Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild's 5-4 loss against the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night at Rogers Arena in Vancouver:
1. The line of Nino Niederreiter, Jason Pominville and Erik Haula kept on rolling on Tuesday, scoring in the first period to get the Wild (11-8-3) on the board, then adding a goal in each the second and third periods to keep it afloat.
Coach Bruce Boudreau noted the line's responsibility and its chemistry following Tuesday's morning skate and his trust in putting them on the ice together. It took them just five minutes to prove their coach right.
After an outstanding breakout pass by defenseman Marco Scandella, Niederreiter raced by a defenseman and gained control of the puck near the top of the right circle. He crashed hard toward the net and put a shot on goal that Ryan Miller stopped, but Pominville was there to clean up the rebound and pot his fourth goal of the season into an open net.
Video: MIN@VAN: Pominville cashes in on Niederreiter's shot
It snapped a nine-game goal drought for Pominville, who wasn't done (more on that below). For Scandella, it was his first point since returning from a high ankle sprain.
For the Wild, it marked the fourth straight game it has scored first and the sixth time in its past seven.
Trailing by a goal with under six minutes to play, Haula deflected a pass by Ryan Suter past Miller, tying the game at 4-4.
2. Pominville celebrated his 34th birthday a day early by scoring his second goal of the game in the second period.
This time, Haula was the other forward on the line with an assist, as the Wild entered the zone 3-on-2. Haula flipped a cross-zone pass to Pominville, who ripped a slapper past Miller.
Video: MIN@VAN: Pominville blasts in second goal to pad lead
The two-goal game was the first by Pominville this season and first for him since Game 3 against the Dallas Stars in the Stanley Cup Playoffs last spring. It was his first multi-goal effort in a regular season game since March 5, 2015 against the Washington Capitals.
3. The Wild won yet another coach's challenge in the first period, this time one that rolled back the Canucks' (10-11-2) tying goal.
It was the third time in four tries that Boudreau has won a call he has challenged this season.
This time it came after Henrik Sedin appeared to tie the game at 1-1 with 5:18 left in the first period. After Darcy Kuemper couldn't glove down an initial shot, the puck drifted to the goaltender's left to the stick of Sedin, who roofed a quick shot.
Kuemper was unable to play Sedin's shot, however, because Vancouver's Brandon Sutter had ventured into the crease, obstructing Kuemper's ability to play the puck.
Boudreau challenged, and referee Wes McCauley agreed, taking the goal off the board.
• Wild defenseman Gustav Olofsson suited up and played in his first game with Minnesota this season (third NHL game of his career), skating in 11:40.
• Jason Zucker assisted on Pominville's second goal and now has a helper in four-consecutive games. His breakaway goal in the third period gave him his ninth career multi-point game in the NHL.
Video: MIN@VAN: Zucker buries backhander on breakaway
• Vancouver outhit Minnesota 23-11 and finished 2-for-3 on the power play. Minnesota was 0-for-2 with the man advantage.
• Wild defenseman Jared Spurgeon, who celebrated his 27th birthday on Tuesday, assisted on Haula's goal in the third period.
• Attendance: 17,917
He Said It
"We let the twins (Henrik and Daniel Sedin) do what they do best; we took a couple of penalties and obviously, they can make plays and have good special teams and they did it. They scored a couple of PP goals, tied the game up and unfortunately in the third, we didn't get off to a good start." -- Wild forward Jason Pominville
Video: Jason Pominville postgame at Vancouver
He Said It, Again
"We need them not just once in a while. If we don't have our best players being our best players, nobody is going to succeed." -- Wild coach Bruce Boudreau on the line of Eric Staal, Zach Parise and Charlie Coyle
Video: Bruce Boudreau postgame at Vancouver
He Said It, Again (Again)
"I think it went off his skate. You're trying to play coming off the back wall [and it] hits that; it just kind of seemed to be how the game went. It was good to see that we battled back, but just a bizarre game." -- Wild goaltender Darcy Kuemper on the Canucks' game-winning goal
They Said It
"Even though we didn't make it easy on ourselves ... we found a way. It's nice to get a bounce going our way at the end." - Canucks forward Alex Burrows
Dan's Three Stars
* Sven Baertschi
** Jason Pominville
*** Jason Zucker