How it happened: The Wild’s Zach Parise and Matt Cullen scored in the shootout, and goaltender Niklas Backstrom saved two out of the Blackhawks’ three chances to provide the win. Backstrom made 28 saves and didn’t allow a goal after replacing Josh Harding, who gave up two goals in the first seven minutes of the game and was pulled. The Wild went ahead 1-0 in the first period with an early goal by Cullen off his own rebound. The Blackhawks responded with goals by Andrew Shaw and Jonathan Toews to take a 2-1 lead after the first period. The Wild’s Cal Clutterbuck scored the lone goal in the second period. Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford made 23 saves and suffered his first loss of the season in six starts.
Player of the game: Wild coach Mike Yeo didn’t hesitate to pull Harding after he struggled early, and the move paid off. Backstrom was the difference for the Wild.
What it means: The Blackhawks lost their first game of the season. They had started out with a franchise-record six consecutive wins. The Blackhawks did pick up a point Wednesday and have 13 points on the season. The Blackhawks’ penalty kill kept them in the game again. It didn’t allow the Wild a goal on four power-play opportunities, including a five-on-three for 1:23.
What’s next: The Blackhawks have five more road games before returning to the United Center. They face the Vancouver Canucks on Friday and Calgary Flames on Saturday.