Skip to main content

Minnesota's 3-0 lead melts into 5-2 loss to Vegas in Game 3

It was all Vegas over the final two periods in St. Paul.
Screen Shot 2021-05-21 at 4.58.18 AM

When Joel Eriksson Ek's goal that gave the Wild a 3-0 lead in the first period was overturned, the Vegas Golden Knights stole momentum and rolled over the Wild with five unanswered goals for a 5-2 win and a 2-1 series lead. 

It was a Vegas whooping over the final two periods at Xcel Energy Center Thursday night. The Golden Knights outshot the Wild 36-9 in the final 40 minutes, including a dominating second frame when they tallied three goals while outgunning the Wild with 22 shots on goal to Minnesota's five. 

According to The Athletic, the 16 shots Minnesota had in the game are the fewest in franchise playoff history. In Games 1 and 2, the Wild blistered Vegas goalie Marc-Andre Fleury with shots and great scoring chances. Fleury was a brick wall, but in Game 3 the Wild got to him with goals by Ryan Hartman and Eriksson Ek in the first period, only to see their dominating first period effort screech to a halt after the third goal was wiped away. 

Eriksson Ek's goal just over 13 minutes into the opening period was a fleeting moment as Vegas coach Pete DeBoer challenged for offside, and the replay showed Nick Bjugstad skate into the offensive zone just ahead of Kevin Fiala, who was being hooked as he attempted to gain the zone with the puck. 

Even still, the Wild dominated the rest of the first period and played well to begin the second period, only to have Vegas regain control and overpower Minnesota in a building that the Wild went 19-2-2 at during the regular season. 

Now the Wild will need to bounce back in Game 4 Saturday to avoid being on the brink of elimination. 

"We've been a resilient group all year … we always come back with our best the next game and I think we're one of the few teams who didn't lose three in a row this year and we need to build on that now," said Wild goalie Cam Talbot.

"We're going to have to come out and give our best game and like we've done all year after a couple of losses, we've been an extremely good team at rebounding this year. We have a lot of character in that room and we're extremely resilient, so I know we can put out a 60 minutes on Saturday that emulates the first period tonight."

Game 4 of the best-of-seven series starts at 7 p.m. Saturday and will be televised on NBC. 

Note: Marcus Johansson left the game with an injury, which could open the door for Zach Parise to play in Game 4. Parise has been a healthy scratch in all three playoff games so far. 

Next Up

Redtail Ridge Elementary

Sunbather on the roof triggers shelter-in-place at Savage elementary school

The sunbather told police he was trying to "tan and relax."

Nero

The Raptor Center's ambassador, Nero the turkey vulture, dies at 47

Nero helped save the California condors before taking up his post as an education ambassador.

Ben Leber

Ben Leber named new permanent co-host of 'Twin Cities Live'

The former Minnesota Vikings linebacker was introduced Friday afternoon.

MPR

APM Reports, maker of 'In the Dark' podcast, nixed by Minnesota Public Radio

MPR said "select programming elements" of APM Reports will be incorporated into MPR News.

storm, severe

The latest on holiday weekend severe weather chances for MN

The most significant severe threats are Sunday night and again on Monday.

Arianna Vos

Charges: Driver was drunk, high in head-on crash that killed 19-year-old woman

The young woman killed in the crash was a college student studying zoology.

motorcycle

Motorcyclist killed in Ham Lake after passing in the turn lane

The motorcyclist was hit by a car turning onto the road.

Keith Ellison

Minnesota gets cut of Ford settlement over misleading ads

The $19.2 million settlement centers on Ford's C-Max hybrid and Super Duty pickup truck.

Related

Kaprizov, Wild

Wild to face Vegas in playoffs; Game 1 Sunday

Game 1 is Sunday afternoon in Las Vegas.

Cam Talbot / Minnesota Wild

Wild take Game 1 over Vegas in overtime thriller

It was an epic dual between Cam Talbot and Marc-Andre Fluery.

Screen Shot 2021-05-26 at 10.56.01 PM

And we'll see you Friday night: Wild blank Vegas to force Game 7

A trio of third-period goals fueled a high-drama win in St. Paul.

Kevin Fiala

Fleury great again as Vegas evens series with Wild

The Vegas goalie has stopped 63 of 65 shots through two games.

Kevin Fiala, Jordan Greenway

5 reasons the hockey gods may favor the Wild in Game 7

Knock on wood. Knock on wood. Knock on wood.

Kevin Fiala

Minnesota Wild have 3 possible playoff scenarios

Colorado controls its destiny, and that plays a big role in Minnesota's fate.

Wild

Hope dashed as Vegas blasts Wild in Game 7

Minnesota was bloodied and sent packing for the summer.