Nam Y. Huh/Associated Press
The Minnesota Wild got the start they wanted when they came out with speed and focus in the first period and took a 1-0 lead over their hosts.
They went to the locker room feeling good about themselves, but there was still 40 minutes to play. Their play changed when they came out for the second period.
Instead of taking it to the Blackhawks, the Wild adopted more of a defensive posture and the Blackhawks created most of the offensive opportunities. They outshot the Wild 15-6 in the second period, and while most of those shots came from the outside, it changed the pace of the game dramatically.
Eventually, the Blackhawks went on the power play, and when Bryan Bickell stationed himself in front of Ilya Bryzgalov and he deflected a Patrick Kane shot into the net, the Blackhawks breathed easier.
They were no longer trailing on their home ice, and it seemed inevitable that the Blackhawks would eventually win the game.
The Wild would get back to dictating the pace in the third period, but not until the Blackhawks took the lead on Toews' goal. Minnesota was aggressive after that, but the Wild could not score the game-tying goal.
Minnesota suffered a temporary letdown midway through Game 5, and it prevented them from earning the road win they will need if they are going to survive this series and advance in the Stanley Cup playoffs.