Rapid Reaction: Wild 4, Hawks 2
Here's a quick look at the Wild's win over the Hawks on Tuesday night.
How it happened: Once again the Hawks could not play a 60-minute game, despite getting off to a great start. Add at least two weak goals given up by Corey Crawford, and the recipe for defeat was in place. The Hawks came out on fire, despite getting down 1-0 on a Marty Havlat score. They dominated the middle portion of the first period, taking a 2-1 lead, but that would be all the dominating they would do for the night. Even in killing off a 5-on-3 power play by Minnesota, the Hawks could not keep the momentum into the second period. They played a poor middle 20 minutes, setting up a need to come from behind and it never materialized. Patrick Sharp scored his team leading 26th goal of the season on a first period power play.
What it means: Maybe a break will do Corey Crawford some good. There have been a few leaks in his game as of late and it’s the last thing the Hawks can afford as they come out of the All-star break and into the stretch run. Minnesota wasn’t supposed to be a team the Hawks would have to fight for a playoff spot but they’re just one point behind in the standings with a game in hand.
What’s next: The All-Star break gives the Hawks the next five days off before practice resumes on Monday. They’ll open the “second half” next Tuesday when the Hawks start a six-game road trip in Columbus.