Wild: Scouting the Enemy

(Photo Credit: Iowa Wild // flickr)
This is as about as hockey of a photo as there is in the entire Iowa Wild photo gallery. (Photo Credit: Iowa Wild // flickr)

For as poor as the Iowa Wild have been this season they’ve been a slight thorn in the Admirals side in the last two meetings. Nothing flashy. Nothing cute. It’s just been a matter of them getting the better of the Ads: 4-2 on 10/29/14 and 3-2 on 11/12/14. Luckily, today’s meeting isn’t on a Wednesday nor in Milwaukee… if that had anything to do with those results.

~How’s The New Skipper Doing?~

Since the Wild fired Kurt Kleinendorst and replaced him with John Torchetti they have gone 2-2-1-0 (5 points). The Torchetti era may have started with two wins from two games but they’ve since reverted to a three game losing streak. Mind you. All of those defeats were by a one goal margin – including games with the Oklahoma City Barons and road games in Rockford and Chicago.

~Swedish Goalies Everywhere!~

I feel the key for this evening’s game is actually pretty simple -if- this man plays: Johan Gustafsson. Despite what his overall numbers suggest… 2-5-1-0 record from 13 games played… 3.49 goals against average… 0.894 save percentage… in his last two games against the Admirals he was a major difference maker in the result: 10/29/14, 37 saves and 2 goals allowed… 11/12/14, 26 saves and 2 goals allowed.

If the Admirals can muster up the same level of play that they threw down on the road last night in Rockford, 40 shots on goal, the should be able to have a better go of things against Gustafsson… in theory. I would anticipate Swedes at both ends of the rink tonight with Magnus Hellberg returning to the net after Marek Mazanec was rotated into the fold last night. Got to keep the hot hand hot, right?

Thoughts for tonight’s game in Iowa? Can the Admirals rebound from their previous defeats to Iowa and last night’s result? Scoreline prediction?

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