Wild.com's Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild's 1-0 loss against the Anaheim Ducks at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Tuesday night:
1. Occasionally, there are times when a team gets rightfully shut out. Tuesday was not one of those times.
The Wild peppered Ducks goaltender John Gibson virtually all night, outshooting Anaheim 37-23 in the game, including a 16-4 edge in the second period alone.
"You could tell very early on, or I could -- maybe I know him a little bit -- but he was really on his game and it was going to take something special to beat him. But we couldn't find that," said Wild coach Bruce Boudreau. "I think if we had got one then, they looked very tired, that then they may have sagged. But as long as they had the lead, they were going to be strong for them, and they were, especially in the last 10 minutes."
Video: Bruce Boudreau Postgame vs. Anaheim
Minnesota slumbered through the first five minutes, allowing the Ducks to get on the scoreboard first on a goal by Joseph Cramarossa at 4:38 of the opening period. The Wild awoke after that, drawing its first power play two minutes later and nearly tying the game a handful of times on that man advantage alone.
"We knew they were end of a road trip and figured we had the legs on them, but not the best start," said Wild forward Charlie Coyle. "Obviously you want to start off and try to get that first one. Sometimes that's not the case. We battle back and kind of got into it, and their goalie came up huge. A number of pucks on net and chances, that's how it goes sometimes. Yeah, you tip your hat to him."
Twelve of Minnesota's 13 first-period shots came after Anaheim scored its goal.
2. Minnesota's NHL-best home power play was unable to convert on any of its five opportunities.
The Wild, which entered the game having scored on 30.1 percent of its chances at Xcel Energy Center this season, was granted a pair of power plays in each the first and second periods and another a few minutes into the third but was unable to find a way to get the puck past Gibson.
Even Anaheim's broken sticks (twice) and a dropped stick (once), which gave the Wild a virtual two-man advantage for several seconds on three separate power plays, made no difference.
3. Playing the final game of a marathon road trip that began nearly two weeks ago, Anaheim (30-18-10) played its finest period of the night in the third. Like Gibson on the other end, Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk was up to the challenge.
Dubnyk, who entered the game with 31 victories, an NHL best, stopped 11 shots over the final 20 minutes to keep Minnesota afloat until the final moments.
"It's the way it goes. Those happen, those games happen every once in a while," Dubnyk said. "Like I said, we're not going to look back on that game and change anything we did. We play like that, we're going to win 90 percent of the time. We just got to keep doing that."
Video: Locker Room Postgame vs Anaheim
It was the first time Minnesota (37-13-6) was shut out since Nov. 15 and the third time this season the Wild has been on the wrong end of a 1-0 score.
• Mikko Koivu finished 20-6 in the faceoff circle, reaching 20 wins on draws for the third time this season (11th in his career).
• Corey Perry and Hampus Lindholm each tallied assists on Cramarossa's goal.
• Ducks forward Antoine Vermette was assessed a game misconduct in the third period for abuse of officials.
• Attendance: 19,047
He Said It
"They boxed us out really well. Their defense did a really good job in doing that. We couldn't get inside, which is where we wanted to get to score goals, and then you add a little puck into that, and you lose 1-0." -- Wild coach Bruce Boudreau
They Said It
"I think the mind's willing but the legs aren't working properly. I thought we stood around for the first two periods of that hockey game doing nothing. In saying that, we played a lot of good hockey on this road trip and didn't get results, so tonight, I felt we deserved it." -- Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf assessing the team's state of mind at the end of a six-game road trip
* John Gibson
** Devan Dubnyk
*** Joseph Cramarossa