50,426 see Wild trounce Blackhawks in their first outdoor game

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In their first game in a football stadium, the Wild scored the equivalent of two field goals as they disposed of the Chicago Blackhawks 6-1 at TCF Bank Stadium Sunday.

They've been knocked out of the playoffs in each of the last three years by Chicago, but the Wild have now beaten the Blackhawks in all three of their meetings this season. The outdoor game on the University of Minnesota campus was the setting for an especially impressive win.

10 different Wild players were on the scoresheet, led by Jason Pominville and Erik Haula with a goal and two assists each.


The Wild have won all four of their games since John Torchetti took over as interim coach after last weekend's firing of Mike Yeo.

The Star Tribune notes that Minnesota's scored 21 goals in those four games. At the end of Yeo's tenure, it took them nine games to score that many goals.

Scoring five goals each night during their sweep through western Canada, marked the first time in their history the Wild reached that total three times in a row.


While Sunday's game in Minneapolis– part of the NHL's Stadium Series – was definitely a home game for the Wild, Torchetti still has not coached the team at their home in St. Paul. They'll take the Xcel Energy Center ice under Torchetti on Tuesday when the New Your Islanders come to town.

As the Associated Press reports, all three of the former Gophers on the Wild roster scored points in their return to the U of M campus. In addition to Haula's three points, Thomas Vanek scored a goal and defenseman Mike Reilly had an assist.

The only shadow on the day for the Wild was an injury to Jason Zucker, who was carted off the ice after a big hit from the Blackhawks' Michal Roszival in the second period. Zucker's head hit the ice when he fell and he did not return. Roszival received a game misconduct penalty.


The Blackhawks' Patrick Kane broke up goalie Devin Dubnyk's shutout bid late in the third period. According to the Chicago Tribune, Kane said of the Wild: "It seems like they're excited every time they get a chance to play us. We've got to be more ready to play."

The teams will meet two more times this season, each hosting a game in late March.


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