THE WILD WIRE - BLOG #17Feb 6, 2018
WEST COAST ROADIE
Coming off the all-star break, Iowa Wild hit the road again opening up a three-game California swing.
And boy, did it kick things off on the right “skate” in Bakersfield on February 2, blasting the Condors 8-0. The dominant shutout win was the club’s 11th victory on the road this season and its third blanking of an opponent overall. It was also the most lopsided win in the AHL this season (to date), and the Wild broke several franchise records in the process:
- Most goals in a single game (8)
- Most goals in a single period (6 – 2nd period)
- Largest margin of victory (8)
The win was the fifth straight victory for goaltender Niklas Svedberg, which also broke a club record. Previously, only Steve Michalek had ever won at least four consecutive decisions, something he’s achieved twice in his tenure with Iowa, including a stretch from November 9-24 earlier this season.
Also of note from the victory….
- 16 of the 18 skaters registered at least one point, and somewhat surprisingly, no Wild player recorded more than two points in the contest
- Defensemen Carson Soucy and Brennan Menell (both rookies) finished the game with a +4 rating, which ties a franchise record
Unfortunately, the Wild couldn’t run its overall winning streak to five straight, as it was dumped the following night in Ontario losing to the Reign 5-1. In the span of two games, the Wild had its most convincing win of the season and its biggest deficit at night’s end. Crazy how sports play themselves out sometimes.
The Wild wraps up its road trip in San Diego Tuesday (February 6), with the opening face-off scheduled for 9 p.m. CT.
Iowa will be looking to avoid back-to-back regulation losses when it takes on the Gulls. That’s of note, because the Wild hasn’t gone two straight games without at least one point in the standings since Opening Weekend!
MEANWHILE, IN LAS VEGAS…
Yes, the Las Vegas Golden Knights were beaten handily by the Minnesota Wild on February 2, falling 5-2 at Xcel Energy Center. However, what they’ve accomplished so far this season has been truly amazing.
Just look at the Western Conference standings in the NHL. At last glance over the weekend, VGK had 34 wins and 72 points, and they were leading the entire conference. The 34 wins is the most by an NHL team in its inaugural season, surpassing the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Florida Panthers, both who won 33 games (out of 84) during the 1993-94 campaign.
Look, I understand, the “setup” for VGK in the expansion draft may have been more favorable than for any other first year squad, but you have to give credit where it’s due.
Nice to see former Wild winger Alex Tuch contributing to their success as well. He’s a really good kid – he did a ton in the Des Moines community last season - and he’s a pretty bright kid as well with a good personality, to boot.
On the season, Tuch has 22 points (9g, 13a) with the Golden Knights.
BACK AT HOME (SOON ENOUGH)
Don’t forget the Wild host home games this Friday (7 p.m.) and Saturday (6 p.m.). Friday, the Chicago Wolves are in town and it’s Local Heroes Night. Saturday is “Pink in the Rink,” featuring a t-shirt giveaway and a postgame jersey auction, benefiting Susan G. Komen of Iowa. The opponent: division rival Rockford. Hope to see you all at the rink.
- Wild Joe Radio