Well, let's get The Ugly out of the way: my lame-o, red-neck practically-north-of-the-cultural-divide-that-is-US-Highway-8 town doesn't carry NBCSN without paying the mafia of a cable company lots of money (ask me how I really feel).
In other words: I won't be watching a lot of playoff hockey from here on out. When I can, I'll try to make it to a bar or restaurant that has the game on, but in the barren wasteland that is Wisconsin, those are few and far between. Their all losing their minds about Aaron Rodgers and cheese over here (they've actually started using water that's had cheese soaked in it to de-ice the roads... I wish I was joking).
In any case, that being said, I'm going to take a look at some stats, both #fancy and non, and see what I see. Bear in mind through all of this: I didn't get to see the game. I listened on the radio, but I couldn't see anything. So don't expect gorgeous imagery detailing the shine of the ice as Kane.... well, let's just move on.
For my analysis, I'll be using www.extraskater.com
For this section, I'm looking at 5v5 Close statistics (statistics from when the score is within 1 goal or tied).
Enough with the numbers, what's that mean?
Well, basically, it means we are taking at least the same number of shots as the Hawks when the game is 5-on-5 and the score is within 1. It also means we, defensively speaking, aren't too far off the mark either- one goal on 15 unblocked shots (with 5 men on the ice and the score within 1) is not bad. It's not particularly GREAT, but it's not bad.
For this section, I'll be looking at shorthanded and PP numbers.
Unfortunately, we only spent 23.9 minutes on the ice at 5v5 with the score within 1 goal. We spent another 6.8 minutes on the ice shorthanded. In those 6.8 minutes, we were scored on twice. What's worse, despite our 6 minutes of having a man-advantage, we were unable to score. Indeed, in those 6 minutes, we only managed 11 Corsi Events, 9 of which were also Fenwick events (unblocked). You read that right: in 6 minutes of power play, we only managed 9 unblocked shots.
Translate that, would you?
What do I want to see:
It's very simple. It's not revolutionary (in fact I said it in my prediction). The Wild absolutely MUST stay out of the penalty box. The Blackhawk's PP is took good, and our PK is not good enough to be taking penalties. Secondly, our defense needs to be spot-on. We can't have breakdowns that lead to 2-on-1's or 2-on-0's. Those are two huge changes that will help.