ST. PAUL, Minn. - A late-game collapse late last month to the Panthers cost the Wild one, maybe, two points and emerged as one of their few blemishes since they've climbed back into the Western Conference playoff race.
And another third-period cooldown stung the Wild Thursday, as the Rangers overcame a two-goal deficit late before completing their comeback in a shootout for a 4-3 win at Xcel Energy Center.
Center Mika Zibanejad and winger Artemi Pararin scored in the shootout, while the Wild's Ryan Donato and Zach Parise were blanked.
This 1 vs. 1 battle came after a scoreless overtime on the heels of Zibanejad tying the game at 3 at 18:54 of the third on a redirect that just rolled by goalie Alex Stalock.
Earlier in the period, at 11:51, the Rangers moved within a goal on a shot from winger Pavel Buchnevich that caromed of defenseman Jonas Brodin's skate before clipping captain Mikko Koivu's stick and flying by Stalock.
Stalock, in his fourth appearance over the past six outings, had 28 saves in a career-high 29th game. Donato opened the scoring 9 minutes, 49 seconds into the first period when he cut through the middle of New York's zone and threw a backhander on net that Rangers goalie Alexandar Georgiev couldn't handle. The goal (11) set a new career high for Donato and with an assist on the play, captain Mikko Koivu recorded the 500th of his career.
Just 2:03 later, New York pulled even - a shot from winger Artemi Panarin from inside the left faceoff circle that was set up on a cross-zone pass from defenseman Anthony DeAngelo.
But the Wild would take a lead into the intermission after Brodin scored on a blistering one-timer at 16:43. It was Brodin's second goal of the season and first since Nov.19 in Buffalo.
The Wild doubled their lead on a point shot from defenseman Matt Dumba 7:38 into the second, but the goal was disallowed after the Rangers issued a coach's challenge to check for goalie interference. After a review, the NHL determined winger Ryan Hartman impaired Georgiev's ability to make the save.
Hartman did connect with Georgiev, but it came after he was bumped by DeAngelo. Still, the goal was wiped off the scoreboard.
Eventually, the Wild would get that goal back; with 2:07 remaining in the second, winger Jordan Greenway deflected in a Brodin shot.
The point put Greenway one shy of tying the 24 he registered last season. As for Brodin, the assist gave him 22 on the season - tying his career best set in 2017-18. Brodin is just one point from matching his career-high 25 points.
Much like the second, the third period had a back-and-forth feel that had a few close calls for the Wild. Donato was stymied on a breakaway, which drew a crowd after he attempted another whack at the puck after Georgiev covered up. And Greenway also had a jump into New York's end before Georgiev came aggressively out to challenge and break up the chance.
The game's first power play didn't come until near the midway point of the third, a cross-checking call against Wild defenseman Carson Soucy that the team survived. The Wild ended up blanking during its two power plays.
Georgiev finished with 23 saves.
Visit the Star Tribune (Minneapolis) at www.startribune.com