NHL PLAYOFFS: Game 6 – Las Vegas @ Minnesota

Tonight the Wild get an elimination game at home. A win here forces game 7 back in Las Vegas on Friday. The home team hasn't fared well in this series so far, with Vegas getting the only home win in game 2.

The Wild didn't make it look super easy, but they got a win in game 5.  At this point in the series, it no longer matters how well the team plays, it just matters if they win and keep the series going.

Game 5 featured the most lopsided shot totals in the series, driven by a ridiculous 2nd period where Las Vegas outshot Minnesota 22-1.  So let's look at shot share, shall we?

Shot Share By Period SelectShow

Not counting empty net goals in the data shows us what the Wild need to avoid in order to stay in games.

  • In the 11 periods where the Wild's shot share is greater than 40%, the score is 7-7.
  • In the 5 periods where the Wild are getting less than 40% of the shots, the score is 0-5.
  • In the 5 periods where the Wild have a shot share of at least 60%, they have scored 3, while giving up 2 (both in the second period of game 4)
  • Both goalies have almost identical save percentages when their team is getting outshot (less than 40% shot share)
    • M. Fleury - .941 (51 shots against)
    • C. Talbot - .942 (86 shots against)

One of the important things here is that the Wild don't necessarily have to overwhelm Vegas in the shot department, even in the periods when shots are close to even, the goals have been exactly even.  (Goals are 5-5 when Minnesota's shot share is between 40 and 60%).

Just don't do whatever happened in the second period in game 5.


This ends up boiling down to really basic stuff - it's bad to be outshot? You don't say! - but I was a little bit surprised at how even things were when the most lopsided periods on either side were removed.

Jordan Greenway

Highest Game Score total across the five games of the series?

Jordan Greenway.

What's Game Score? SelectShow

The Wild have four players that have an on-ice xG% greater than 50%.  Greenway's is the highest, followed by his linemates Eriksson Ek and Foligno.  The fourth is ... Matt Dumba, who is having a much better series than internet commenters would lead you to believe.

The Greenway-Ek-Foligno line continues to be the best thing the Wild have going as far as carrying play.  Nice to see Greenway getting some production on that line as well.

Jared Spurgeon

Getting absolutely killed in xG so far this series (with him on the ice the Wild are getting 36% of the xG, with him off the ice, the Wild are getting 52% of the xG - that difference is worst of the Wild D). He and Ryan Suter are both below 40% Corsi as well. They just aren't getting the puck out of the defensive zone.

Because I just talked about Game Score, Jared Spurgeon has the lowest average Game Score of any Wild D in the series, and only Victor Rask has a lower cumulative Game Score in the playoffs.

Cam Talbot / Marc-Andre Fleury

One or the other of these two keeps having monster games in this series.  Really only game 3 wasn't decided by which goaltender was currently standing on their head.  Half of the goalie performances in this series have been above 95% save percentage.  It's kind of crazy.

GameTalbot Sv%Fleury Sv%

I take back any and all "bad Cam Talbot" tags I may have put on previous posts. I was wrong, and I'm sorry.

Kirill Kaprizov

He scored! I really really want this to be the start of him finding the net consistently for the rest of this playoff season.  So glad he got one in game 5. Enjoy all the work the lizard man did to set this up and pretend with me that Kaprizov used some kind of telekinesis to run Stephenson and McNabb into each other to create the space he needed.

34 thoughts on “NHL PLAYOFFS: Game 6 – Las Vegas @ Minnesota”

  1. If the Wild had controlled their defensive blue line like this all series, they would have swept.

    A little less good in the last minutes of the second period, but this had been quite a defensive game.

  2. Bjugstad wants to know why some were suggesting Boldy should take his spot

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