The 2020-21 Rookie of the Year scored once in the first period and twice in the third of Wednesday’s 6-2 blowout at the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Wild center Joe Eriksson Ek also scored two goals and an assist in the win.
May 5 (News) – Left winger Kirill Kaprizov scored the first postseason hat trick in franchise history and led the Minnesota Wild to a dominant win over the St. Louis Blues in Game 2 of their Stanley Cup playoff series.
“We sat down with the coaching staff and worked on a few things, just a few small changes,” Kaprizov told reporters. “It was the little things that we kind of changed.
“Things didn’t go the way we wanted in the last game. In this game they did it.”
Eriksson Ek lit the lamp 9:33 in the first to set off a streak of four unanswered points to start the game. Center colleague Frederick Gaudreau scored in the power play to 13:04 in the first third. Kaprizov scored his first goal about six minutes later.
Eriksson Ek gave the Wilds a 4-0 lead when he scored his second goal just 51 seconds into the second.
Blues center Jordan Kyrou equalized with a score of 12:34 in the bridge phase. Right winger Vladimir Tarasenko added another Blues goal 4:14 into the third.
Kaprizov then finished the Blues with two points over the final, 8-13.
His second goal of the evening got going. Right winger Mats Zuccarello got a pass down the right flank amid the breakaways. He ran forward and laced up a pass between two defenders to Kaprizov. The Wild winger received the fodder between circles and ripped a wrist shot past Blues net reducer Ville Husso for a 5-2 lead.
Around 65 seconds later he added the last goal of the evening. Right winger Ryan Hartman and defender Jonas Brodin assisted that goal with an empty net.
Brodin took control of the puck deep in wild territory and cleared it out for Hartman. The Wild forward quickly hit a shot at the ice for Kaprizov, who was standing on the right flank near the blue line.
Kaprizov took control and ran towards the Blues blue line. He then sliced a deep backhander between the whistles to sound the horn and complete his historic hat trick.
Wild goalie Marc-Andre Fleury scored 32 saves to win. Husso recorded 22 saves for the Blues. Tarasenko averaged one goal and one assist in the loss. Center Robert Thomas recorded two assists for the Blues.
The Blues will host Wild in Game 3 of the best-of-seven game series Friday at 9:30 p.m. EDT at the Enterprise Center in St. Louis.