ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA – Not even some inside information from Olympic teammate Zach Parise could stop T.J. Oshie in a shootout.
Oshie and Alexander Steen scored shootout goals and the St. Louis Blues took over the top spot in the NHL standings with a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild on Sunday night.
In his first shootout since his memorable Olympic performance against Russia, Oshie beat Ilya Bryzgalov — a Russian who wasn’t on the team that lost to Oshie and Team USA in Sochi — over his shoulder in the first round. Steen sealed the win in the following round after the Blues’ Brian Elliott turned away Parise and Mikko Koivu.
“I think I was talking to Zach about that move tonight over in Sochi and he might have told Bryz what it was,” Oshie said about his backhand-to-forehand move. “It seemed like he had me and I got a little lucky. It must’ve just squeaked inside the post. I got a little fortunate on that one, but I’ll keep taking them.”
The Wild fell behind 2-0 early, but tied it with second-period goals from Jason Pominville and Matt Moulson. Not many teams are able to come back on St. Louis, which only allows 26.4 shots and 2.22 goals per game.
“I think that they thought they were going to take it to us physically and I think our guys responded to that,” Wild coach Mike Yeo said. “I think we got into it, we started being physical on their defensemen. We really started to get in our game and from that point on, I thought we were the better team.”
Bryzgalov had 21 saves in his first start for Minnesota since coming over in a trade with Edmonton on Tuesday. Like Oshie, Bryzgalov also thought he had the save in the shootout.
“You know, pretty much I almost had it. I don’t know how he raised it over the shoulder,” he said. “I thought there was no way to go for him. I was completely surprised he scored on that one.”
The “legend” of Oshie in shootout situations continues to get bigger, even among teammates.
“When I see Osh going in on a shootout, I kind of giggle,” Blues center David Backes said. “I told him afterward that the goalies are starting to play like soccer goalies because they’re just guessing left or right. He’s got moves left, got moves right, got moves straight ahead. It’s pretty special to watch and I’ve seen it a lot.”
Rangers 3, Red Wings 0
In New York, Henrik Lundqvist earned his 300th NHL victory and 49th career shutout.
Lundqvist made 30 saves in shutting out the Red Wings for the second time this season, as New York completed a three-game season-series sweep of its Original Six rival. The Swedish goalie is one win shy of tying Mike Richter’s franchise record of 301. He caught Rangers great Ed Giacomin for the club mark in shutouts.
Bruins 5, Panthers 2
In Sunrise, Florida, Torey Krug scored the go-ahead goal in the third period and Boston won its season-high fifth straight.
Chad Johnson made 20 saves, and Chris Kelly, Jarome Iginla, Patrice Bergeron and Andrej Meszaros also scored for Boston. The Bruins are 7-0-3 during a 10-game stretch on the road, their longest such point streak since 2010-11.
Blackhawks 2, Sabres 1
In Buffalo, Jonathan Toews scored the go-ahead goal 1:34 into the third period, and Chicago snapped a two-game road skid with a win over the Sabres.