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Wild shake off blowout losses to Avs, do just enough to beat Ducks

Cam Talbot makes 24 saves on 25 shots and Ryan Suter nets his first goal in over a year to help Minnesota snap a two-game skid with a 2-1 victory over Anaheim.

After receiving some harsh “hockey lessons” from the Avalanche, the Wild didn’t exactly come out swinging against the Ducks. The Wild did, however, do enough to beat the Ducks 2-1 despite a drowsy start.

Wild do just enough to beat Ducks

Even in their stronger, Kirill Kaprizov-powered rendition, the Wild aren’t uncomfortable in 0-0 games, as this contest was for a while vs. the Ducks. But Minnesota looked out of sync, if not outright flat, to start.

Through the first 20 minutes, the Ducks managed a 10-5 shots on goal advantage. The Wild even found themselves down 1-0 to the Ducks after a Mats Zuccarello miskew opened the door for a pretty Troy Terry tally.

Luckily for the Wild, they did eventually respond vs. the Ducks. They tied things up on the power play later in the second period, then Nick Bjugstad hammered home a puck for the 2-1 lead. That ended up being the final score for an ugly-but-sufficient win.

Perhaps the Wild can mosey through the rest of this month. The Wild face a back-to-back set on Wednesday, with another game against the Ducks followed by a test vs. the Blues. They then get a nice breather before closing out March with two games against the Sharks.

If the Wild aren’t careful, they could squander opportunities to set up a buffer by sleepwalking through games against teams like the Ducks and Sharks. Their April schedule is heavy on games against the Blues, and also feature tests vs. the Avalanche and Golden Knights.

Maybe seeing something like this so-so effort, and those blowout losses to the Avs, might inspire Bill Guerin to really not mess around in adding talent?

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.