Skip to main content

Net wars: Could the Wild-Blackhawks series be determined by goaltending?


We may not know when the NHL Western Conference semifinal series will begin for the Minnesota Wild and the Chicago Blackhawks, but we do know the goaltending matchup will feature prominently in this series.

That matchup will pit Minnesota's Vezina Trophy finalist Devan Dubnyk against the Wild's playoff nemesis, Corey Crawford of the Blackhawks.

According to ESPN, Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville answered questions about who would start in net against the Wild when he made the announcement on Monday.

Crawford started games 1 and 2 against Nashville, but struggled as he went 1-1 with a 4.19 goals against average and a .850 save percentage. Quenneville then turned to rookie Scott Darling in games 3-6 – snapping Crawford's streak of starting 57 consecutive playoff games.

But he replaced Darling in game 6, and the Blackhawks came back to win, plus Crawford has had success against Minnesota in each of their last two post season series.

For Minnesota, Dubnyk showed his toughness, responding from an awful game 4, when he allowed six goals to St. Louis, only to stop a combined 66 shots in games 5 and 6 to help the Wild clinch the series.

Dubnyk's game 6 performance included several tough, but important stops.

This embed is invalid

Then there was Dubnyk's nearly top-play worthy stop against Alexander Steen in game 5.

Playoff hockey often comes down to goaltending, and the Wild-Blackhawks' series should be no exception – whenever it starts.

Next Up

Kirill Kaprizov

Wild win battle of NHL's hottest teams, extend winning streak to six

Kirill Kaprizov delivered a shootout winner to take down the Maple Leafs.

Eric Kendricks

Vikings downgrade Eric Kendricks to out against Lions

The Vikings have also activated Michael Pierce from injured reserve.

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Minneapolis teen arrested in St. Cloud after fleeing police in stolen vehicle

The vehicle was stolen in a car-jacking in Minneapolis Thursday.

snow, blowing snow

Winter storm warnings issued with heavy snow set to slam MN

Parts of northern Minnesota could see more than a foot of snow, but there won't be much in the Twin Cities.

D'Angelo Russell

With KAT out, Timberwolves can't upset Nets

D'Angelo Russell stepped up but couldn't overcome Brooklyn's firepower.

Everson Griffen Vikings dot com

Everson Griffen confirms he has bipolar disorder

"I’ve been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore.”

Angela Renee Jones, St. Cloud murder suspect

St. Cloud suspect now charged in two local murder cases

Both murders happened within a day of each other in June.