A showdown between the Eastern Conference's top two teams lived up to its billing in entertainment value on Wednesday night, but it ended sourly for the Minnesota Wild, who fell 4-3 after a shootout loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in St. Paul.
Matt Cullen and Danny Heatly were stopped by Ray Emery while Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane both hit wristers past Niklas Backstrom in the shootout. The home loss strings, particularly since Minnesota came back from a 2-0 deficit in the first place.
Chicago outshot Minnesota 11-2 in the first period, but they were unable to break through against Backstrom until the second period, when they took a 2-0 lead on goals by Marian Hossa and Michael Frolik. But the Wild struck back with goals by Kyle Brodziak and Cullen less than three minutes apart to tie the game 2-2 heading into the third period. Toews struck for Chicago first but Minnesota was relentless in outshooting the Blackhawks 16-7 in the final perid, and Mikko Koivu finally tied it back up with just over five minutes to go in regulation, setting the stage for overtime, where neither team attempted more than three shots.