Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.



NHL Cup Watch: Evason says the Wild don't dive, but hints that their opponent might

The war of words between the Minnesota and Dallas coaches is heating up as the scene switches to St. Paul. Also, Faber continues to impress, and Pavelski is still sidelined.

Minnesota Wild head coach Dean Evason spoke to a gathering of reporters at MSP Airport following the team's return from their first two games of their playoff series in Dallas on Thursday, April 20, 2023.
Jess Myers / The Rink Live

Note: With several Big Ten, NCHC and CCHA players, among others, on NHL playoff rosters, The Rink Live will be bringing fans periodic notebooks that include these former collegians as we progress toward a Stanley Cup champion.

ST. PAUL — When he met the Twin Cities media on a rainy Thursday afternoon, shortly after the team’s charter back from Texas landed at MSP, Minnesota Wild coach Dean Evason had penalties on his mind.

The Wild have surrendered nine goals in the first two games of their series versus the Dallas Stars, and five of those have come with one of Evason’s players in the penalty box. That means an emphasis on more effectively killing penalties, and additional emphasis on how those Wild players got into solitary confinement in the first place.

Stars coach Peter DeBoer has noted in interviews that Minnesota is one of the more frequently penalized teams in the league, and that Dallas plans to take advantage of that fact. Evason hinted at a belief that the Stars might be taking advantage of his team’s reputation for play that is outside the rules.

We felt that they had some bigger people probably go down pretty easy in that hockey game.
Wild head coach Dean Evason

“We watch all the press conferences too,” Evason said. “(DeBoer) mentioned about how we’re sixth in the league and how we’re going to continue. We monitor that.”


And with the Dallas coach planting that seed in the media and with the officials, Evason was frank in his thought that especially in game two (a 7-3 Dallas win), a few Stars may have hammed things up.

“We felt that they had some bigger people probably go down pretty easy in that hockey game,” Evason said. “We’ve talked about this before and it’s a fine line, because we don’t dive. Our team, the Minnesota Wild, don’t dive.”

He specifically mentioned star forward Kirill Kaprizov, who has taken plenty of physical abuse in the first two games.

“He doesn’t go down very often, and he probably got hurt because of it, but we don’t do that,” Evason said. “That’s not what we do, but there was some of that last night.”

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Minnesota Wild at Dallas Stars
Minnesota Wild defenseman Brock Faber (7) skates against the Dallas Stars during the third period in game one of the first round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs on Monday, April 17, 2023 at the American Airlines Center.
Jerome Miron / USA Today Sports

Despite defensive mess, Faber continues to impress

The Wild were admittedly a shambles defensively in the game two loss in Dallas, giving up a franchise playoff record seven goals, and serving up odd-man rushes like they do cups of Diet Dr. Pepper in north Texas. Evason said the players can expect to hear some pointed reviews of their play and the breakdowns on Friday morning when they go over video before game three. Although he said he has no notes for rookie blueliner Brock Faber, who was spectacular in the series opener.

“He just goes about his business,” Evason said of the former Minnesota Gophers captain. “If you want to pick out individuals, you wouldn’t see him tomorrow morning on the video, so that’s a good thing.”


The Vegas Golden Knights head to Sunrise, Fla., for Games 3 and 4 of the Stanley Cup Final with a 2-0 edge over the Florida Panthers in the best-of-seven series after a dominating 7-2 victory on Monday night.
Monday marked the third multi-goal game of the playoffs for Jonathan Marchessault, who has scored 12 goals in 19 games in this year's postseason.
The 2021 Hobey Baker Award winner had 26 goals in 46 games last season
Adin Hill made 33 saves and Zach Whitecloud scored the go-ahead goal in a 5-2 win for Vegas in the Stanley Cup Final on Saturday
Bill Zito’s bold trade imported a gritty, rugged, highly skilled franchise player in Tkachuk who seems supremely suited to this system
By the time the puck drops on Saturday, the Panthers will have had 10 days off between games
While neither franchise has won the Stanley Cup, the Florida Panthers and Vegas Golden Knights have reached the final in previous years.
Dubas, 37, will oversee all aspects of the hockey operations department.
The Kraken lost in Game 7 to the Dallas Stars on May 15 after completing a 46-28-8 mark in the regular season
The Calgary Flames parted ways with Treliving in April after nine seasons as their general manager.

Wild captain Jared Spurgeon, one of the more veteran defensemen in the series, said that Faber is playing beyond his years early in the Maple Grove, Minn., native’s NHL career.

“You can see from his first game how mature he is and he’s so calm with the puck,” Spurgeon said. “A big, strong guy, he makes plays and you never see him frazzled out there. For a guy thrown into his first playoff series it’s pretty amazing to watch and see. We can see what the hype was all about.”

Dec 1, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Stars center Joe Pavelski (16) celebrates a goal scored by left wing Jason Robertson (not pictured) against Anaheim Ducks goaltender Anthony Stolarz (41) during the first period at the American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 1, 2022; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Stars center Joe Pavelski (16) celebrates a goal scored by left wing Jason Robertson (not pictured) against Anaheim Ducks goaltender Anthony Stolarz (41) during the first period at the American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports

Pavelski still sidelined

Dallas veteran forward Joe Pavelski missed game two of the series and did not travel to Minnesota for the third and fourth games of the series. The former Wisconsin standout was injured in game one after a hard hit from Wild defenseman Matt Dumba. Pavelski’s head hit the ice following the collision and he is in concussion protocol.

While Dumba was not given a major penalty for the hit, he has become public enemy number one in the eyes of Stars fans and has been booed every time he touches the puck in Dallas.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New York Islanders at Carolina Hurricanes
Apr 19, 2023; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin (74) scores goal past New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin (30) during the third period in game two of the first round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PNC Arena.
James Guillory / USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

Former Pioneer, Tiger score for Carolina

The Carolina Hurricanes took a 2-0 series lead after a 4-3 overtime win over the New York Islanders on Wednesday.

Two of the goals were scored by players who played college hockey in the state of Colorado.


Defenseman Jaccob Slavin, who played for Colorado College from 2013-15, banked a shot off of Islanders goalie Ilya Sorokin and into the net at 12:19 of the third period to tie the game 3-3. It was the fifth career playoff goal for Slavin, who was playing in his 47th career playoff game.

Slavin also had an assist on Paul Stastny's goal that gave the Hurricanes a 1-0 lead at 5:49 of the first period. Slavin's one-timer from near the boards was tipped in by Stastny. Stastny, 37, played for the University of Denver from 2004-06 and had nine goals in 73 regular season games this season. It was the 27th career playoff goal for Stastny, who was playing in his 105th career playoff game for his fifth NHL team.

NHL: Seattle Kraken at Dallas Stars
Mar 21, 2023; Dallas, Texas, USA; Seattle Kraken goaltender Joey Daccord (35) and center Jaden Schwartz (17) and defenseman Will Borgen (3) and right wing Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates after defenseman Adam Larsson (6) scores the game winning goal against the Dallas Stars during the overtime period at the American Airlines Center.
Jerome Miron / USA TODAY Sports

3 former Huskies make winning playoff debuts

Three former St. Cloud State players made their respective playoff debuts and helped their teams to victory on Monday and Tuesday.

On Monday, defenseman Will Borgen made his playoff debut for the Seattle Kraken in their 3-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche in Denver. It was the franchise's first postseason win. Borgen, who played for the Huskies from 2015-18, is from Moorhead, Minn. He had three hits, two penalty minutes, a shot on goal, a blocked shot and was a plus-1 in 13 minutes, 50 seconds of ice time. Borgen, 26, played in all 82 regular season games for Seattle and had 20 points, 47 penalty minutes and was a plus-11. All of those numbers are the best in Borgen's pro career.

On Tuesday, forward Mikey Eyssimont and defenseman Nick Perbix made their playoff debuts for the Tampa Bay Lightning in their 7-3 win Tuesday at Toronto. Perbix picked up an assist, blocked two shots and was a plus-3 in 17:36 of ice time. The assist came off a long stretch pass from Perbix to Ross Colton at 6:59 of the third period for Tampa Bay's seventh goal. Perbix, 24, is in his rookie season with the Lightning and had 20 points, 22 penalty minutes and was a plus-11 in 69 regular season games. Perbix, who played for the Huskies from 2018-22, is from Elk River, Minn.

Eyssimont had a bit of a tougher debut. He had a shot on goal and one hit in 5:13 of ice time for Tampa bay. But Eyssimont left the game after taking a shoulder check to the face from Toronto's Jake McCabe, a former University of Wisconsin defenseman, with 6:20 left in the second period. Eyssimont did not return to the game and will miss Game 2 of the series.

Eyssimont, 26, played for the Huskies from 2015-18 and is from Littleton, Colo. Eyssimont is playing with his fourth team of the season. He began the season with the Manitoba Moose of the AHL, a farm team of the Winnipeg Jets. He was called up to the Jets for 19 games and then was waived by Winnipeg. He then signed with the San Jose Sharks on Jan. 6 and played 20 games with them until he was traded to the Lightning on March 1. In 54 regular season NHL games this season, he had five goals, 15 points, 63 penalty minutes and was a plus-3.


NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Seattle Kraken at Colorado Avalanche
Colorado Avalanche right wing Logan O'Connor (25) passes the puck away from Seattle Kraken defenseman Jamie Oleksiak (24) during the second period in game one of the first round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Ball Arena in Denver.
Ron Chenoy / USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

Kraken have a number of former college players

There is a good list of former college players who played in that historic win for the Kraken.

Besides Borgen, the following Seattle players played college hockey: forwards Ryan Donato (Harvard, 2015-18), Matt Beniers (Michigan, 2020-22), Brandon Tanev (Providence, 2012-16) and Jaden Schwartz (Colorado College, 2010-12), defensemen Justin Schultz (Wisconsin, 2009-12), Jamie Oleksiak (Northeastern, 2010-11) and Carson Soucy (Minnesota Duluth, 2013-17). Schwartz, Schultz and Oleksiak all had assists in the win.

Seattle's head coach is Dave Hakstol, who was the head coach for the University of North Dakota from 2004-15. Hakstol was an assistant coach at UND from 2000-04 and played for the team from 1989-92.

Jess Myers covers college hockey, as well as outdoors, general sports and travel, for The Rink Live and the Forum Communications family of publications. He came to FCC in 2018 after three decades of covering sports as a freelancer for a variety of publications, while working full time in politics and media relations. A native of Warroad, Minn. (the real Hockeytown USA), Myers has a degree in journalism/communications from the University of Minnesota Duluth. He lives in the Twin Cities. Contact Jess via email at jrmyers@forumcomm.com, or find him on Twitter via @JessRMyers. English speaker.
What to read next
Brunette, who scored the first goal in Predators' franchise history, was an interim coach with the Florida Panthers in 2021-22 and finished as the runner-up for the Jack Adams Award, presented to the NHL's top coach.
McLean served as an assistant coach with the Iowa Wild of AHL from 2017-20.
The Knights are -130 favorites over the Panthers (+119) in Game 1 on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena, and the total is 5 1/2.
Carbery has spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs. He formerly was the head coach of the Hershey Bears -- the Capitals' AHL affiliate -- from 2018-21.
Get Local