Here's what's gone wrong for the Wild in their first 2 games - Bring Me The News

Here's what's gone wrong for the Wild in their first 2 games

Minnesota is still in search of their first win.

It's only been two games, but the Wild have yet to be in the winners column.

They fell to the Detroit Red Wings 4-2 on opening night and blew a two-goal in the third period in a shootout loss to the Carolina Hurricanes.

Minnesota has a ton of off-days this month. They won't play again until Thursday, Oct. 12, and after their home opener on the 14th, they'll have another six-day break. 

This makes it difficult to identify what team they have. But the following issues are why they've struggled in their first two games.

Atrocious special teams

The Wild have really shot themselves in the foot with penalties, while also not being able to convert power plays.

They gave up two power-play goals against Detroit and another in Carolina. 

Obviously numbers are always inflated earlier on in the season but a penalty kill percentage of 70 percent is less than ideal; NHL average is usually around 80 percent, so they're playing below league average.

Meanwhile on offense, they've netted just one power-play goal. They went 0-4 in Detroit and it's arguably the biggest reason they lost. Last year, the Wild converted nearly 21 percent of their power plays and they need to cash in on those opportunities.

Lack of 'top line' production

Center Eric Staal had two points in the loss to Carolina, but his linemates of Nino Niederreiter and Charlie Coyle have yet to light the lamp this season. Niederreiter and Coyle have combined for 13 shots on goal, but haven't scored.

Boudreau is keeping the unit together, as the trio skated together at practice on Monday. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize good things happen when you shoot the puck and eventually they'll break through.

But if they continue to struggle finding the net, Boudreau may have to split them up.

Injuries already causing problems

It only took one game for the Wild to lose a player of significant importance in Mikael Granlund. The Wild said Granlund sought medical attention and they believe the injury is short term.

However when Granlund went down, it broke up the line of Granlund-Mikko Koivu and Jason Zucker, which was one of the most productive units in the NHL last season.

Related: The Wild's salary cap is preventing them from calling up top prospects.

Zach Parise returned to practice on Monday and he's expected to make his season debut on Thursday, but it's not a guarantee he'll play. Parise skated on the team's fourth line with Daniel Winnik and Matt Cullen during Monday's practice.

The Wild have allowed nine goals in two games, but goaltending shouldn't shoulder all the blame because the Wild have handcuffed themselves with all the other problems above.

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