Detroit Red Wings can’t maintain early momentum, lose at Minnesota, 7-4

Detroit Free Press

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Two goals the first four minutes and a late charge didn’t add up to much for the Detroit Red Wings.

Their attempt to stoke their post-All Star break momentum was thwarted by the Minnesota Wild Monday at XCel Energy Center with a 7-4 loss.

The Wings (22-22-6) were let down by special teams. Matthew Boldy earned two of his three goals and three of four points during Minnesota man advantages, while the Wings didn’t convert until their fifth power play.

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Lucas Raymond one-timed a pass from Dylan Larkin midway through the third period to edge the Wings within a pair of goals. Larkin had the first goal, and Gustav Lindstrom also scored early, but the Wild scored five straight goals before Raymond got on the board. His goal came less than two minutes after Joel Eriksson Ek converted on Minnesota’s fourth power play.

Rookie defenseman Moritz Seider had two assists to earn his third multipoint performance in six games.

Coach Jeff Blashill pulled Alex Nedeljkovic with 5:45 to play, and the Wings had a 6-on-4 advantage when Kevin Fiala was called for a penalty with four minutes to play. Robby Fabbri fired a shot from the right circle that Sam Gagner was credited with putting behind Kaapo Kahkonen with 1:45 left. Krill Kaprizov scored his second of the game into an empty net, and Ryan Hartman also scored in the final minute.

The Wings next play Thursday at the New York Rangers.

That’s one

Lindstrom, a second-round pick from 2017 (38th overall), has forged a role as a solid third-pair defenseman who can help generate offense by getting the puck to a forward, but he earned a goal of his own four minutes into the game. Lindstrom fired a wrist shot from near the blue line that sank into Minny’s net, giving Lindstrom his first NHL goal, in his 69th career game.

That’s four

Lindstrom’s goal built on the lead Larkin created 1:27 into the game. Seider stole the puck off Mats Zuccarello as he crossed into Detroit’s zone and sent the puck the other way, finding Larkin in the neutral zone. Larkin maneuvered into Minnesota’s zone, skated around a fallen defender and deked to his backhand. The momentum didn’t last long, though: Boldy scored on a spin move at 5:29, and doubled up during a power play at 8:04.

That’s three

The Wild took it to the Wings to start the second period, cycling the puck in their zone and generating chances. It paid off when Zuccarello got the puck and stepped to the bottom of the left circle and dropped a pass for Kaprizov, who picked up his 21st goal, and forced the Wings to play from behind at 4:54. The Wild had a 5-1 edge in shots to start the second period. Bold completed his hat trick at 18:13, while Raymond served just his fourth penalty of the season.

Contact Helene St. James at hstjames@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from AmazonBarnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail. 

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