(SportsNetwork.com) – Devan Dubnyk will try to bounce back from his roughest
outing in a Minnesota Wild sweater when his club visits the St. Louis Blues
for Friday’s pivotal Game 5 of the Western Conference quarterfinals.
Since being acquired in a trade with Arizona on Jan. 14, Dubnyk has hardly
dealt with adversity, but the goaltender is in need of a rebound effort
Dubnyk was torched for six goals on 17 shots by the Blues on Wednesday before
getting pulled late in the second period. St. Louis won Game 4 by a 6-1 margin
to even this best-of-seven series at two games apiece.
The six goals allowed tied a season high for Dubnyk, who allowed that same
number against Dallas on Dec. 31 when he was still with the Coyotes. The 28-
year-old had only allowed more than three goals once since joining Minnesota,
which saw Dubnyk surrender four goals back on Jan. 20.
“Forget about it. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t make a difference if we lost
1-0 or lost the way we did. It’s 2-2 and we know we got better than that,”
Dubnyk said after the tough outing. “I’ve got [to be] better than that. We all
got [to be] better than that and we’ll get back at it in St. Louis.”
Vladimir Tarasenko scored two goals, including one of the highlight-reel
variety. He is tied with Nashville’s Colin Wilson for the NHL lead with five
Tarasenko put a slick move on Minnesota goaltender Devan Dubnyk on a breakaway
late in the second period to give the Blues a 5-1 edge. He used his speed to
split the defense, cut to the left and reached back with one hand on his stick
to tuck the puck in for his second goal of the night.
Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk notched three assists in the rout, giving
him seven helpers in the series. Shattenkirk is tied with Anaheim’s Corey
Perry for the league lead in total points with seven.
David Backes and Patrik Berglund each had a goal and an assist, helping St.
Louis post its first road playoff win since April 19, 2012, snapping a nine-
Jake Allen made 17 saves for the victory, while Minnesota’s Darcy Kuemper
stopped all nine shots in relief of Dubnyk.
“When we check, we score. It looks like we’ve joined the tournament now, and
we’re dialed in,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said.
Jared Spurgeon scored the lone goal for the Wild, who had shut out St. Louis
3-0 in Game 3.
“They were on top of their game, and we were not even close to being on top of
ours,” Wild coach Mike Yeo said.
Minnesota hopes to bounce back and regain its lead in the series tonight. The
clubs will meet on Sunday for Game 6 in St. Paul.
The Blues and Wild split four meetings in the regular season, with Minnesota
going 2-1-1 thanks to a shootout loss back in November. This series marks the
first playoff encounter between the clubs.