Wild beat Kraken 5-1 behind Boldy’s 2nd hat trick in 8 days

Mar 27, 2023, 8:30 PM

Kraken Wild...

Minnesota Wild LW Matt Boldy,celebrates after scoring against the Kraken on March 27, 2023. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)

(AP Photo/Craig Lassig)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Matt Boldy had his second hat trick in the last five games for Minnesota, Marc-Andre Fleury made 35 saves, and the surging Wild beat the Seattle Kraken 5-1 on Monday night.

Wild 5, Kraken 1: Stats

Jake Middleton had a rare goal, Ryan Hartman scored late and Jared Spurgeon, Marcus Johansson and Joel Eriksson Ek each had two assists as the Wild stayed in first place in the Central Division. They took a one-point lead on both Colorado and Dallas into the day, with a critical road game against the Avalanche coming next on the schedule.

Boldy is a big reason why the Wild are in the lead, with 11 goals in the nine games they’ve played since superstar Kirill Kaprizov was sidelined by a lower-body injury. The Wild are 6-1-2 without Kaprizov, who’s still 10th in the NHL with 39 goals.

Jaden Schwartz ended Fleury’s shutout bid with 9 minutes left, scoring on a bouncing rebound that banked in off the goalie and into the net.

The Kraken, who wrapped up a four-game road swing with their first regulation loss on the trip, control the first wild card spot in the Western Conference. They lead Winnipeg by three points, having already set the NHL record for the biggest second-year improvement — 28 points and counting — by an expansion club since the Original Six era ended in 1967.

Boldy, who turns 22 next week, is second on the team with 28 goals. His last hat trick came in a 5-3 win over Washington just eight days ago.

The 2019 first-round draft pick flashed a wide grin when he notched the natural hat trick 50 seconds into the third period, prompting a shower of ballcaps onto the ice and an exit for Kraken goalie Philipp Grubauer. The fans were fired up for this potential preview of a first-round playoff series, chanting Fleury’s name a few minutes later after a sliding pad save to deny another prime scoring opportunity.

The Wild were outshot 36-20 by the Kraken and had only five on-target attempts in the first period, bailed out time after time by Fleury during a sluggish start. Middleton created a spark after Spurgeon faked a slap shot, passed the puck to his left and set up his blue-line partner for just his seventh career goal in 151 games in the NHL.

Boldy brought a lagging power play to life with his first goal off the setup from Johansson, the first time the Wild scored on the man advantage in five games. They were on a 3-for-22 skid until then.

Boldy, who has 17 points in 13 games this month since Johansson — the former Kraken left wing — was acquired in a trade with the Capitals and placed on his line, sneaked his second goal through traffic with 5:01 remaining in the second period.

Fleury is 4-1-1 against in two seasons against the Kraken. He beat them 1-0 in Seattle on Nov. 11.

The Wild are 16-2-5 since a Feb. 9 loss to Vegas. They’ve got two games against the Golden Knights, who have the best record in the Western Conference, in the next week.


Kraken: Host Anaheim on Thursday night, starting a three-game homestand.

Wild: Visit Colorado on Wednesday night, their first game in Denver this season. The Avalanche won both matchups in Minnesota.

Kraken Breakdown: Forslund on impact of missing Burkovsky, road success

Seattle Kraken

Seattle Kraken Oliver Bjorkstrand...

Brent Stecker

Why Seattle Kraken could be in position for another big offseason trade

Seattle Kraken GM Ron Francis spoke to Seattle Sports about how the offseason could shape up for him to make a big deal for the second year in a row.

19 hours ago

Seattle Kraken...

The Associated Press

Seattle Kraken sign GM Ron Francis to 3-year extension

The Seattle Kraken signed general manager Ron Francis to a three-year contract extension on Wednesday through the 2026-27 season.

2 days ago

Seattle Kraken Yanni Gourde...

Brandon Gustafson

Hakstol shares insight into Kraken players Gourde, Burakovsky and Wright

Seattle Kraken HC Dave Hakstol shared some thoughts on Yanni Gourde's postseason, Andre Burakovsky and prospect Shane Wright.

9 days ago

Seattle Kraken Dave Hakstol...

Brandon Gustafson

HC Dave Hakstol talks Year 2 growth, what’s next for Kraken

Seattle Kraken HC Dave Hakstol joined Bump & Stacy to discuss the team's growth and playoff run in Year 2 and what's next after this season.

10 days ago

Seattle Kraken Shane Wright...

Brandon Gustafson

Morosi: ‘The big question’ with the Kraken focuses on Shane Wright

The biggest question surrounding the Seattle Kraken right now has to do with center prospect Shane Wright, last year's No. 4 pick.

13 days ago

Seattle Kraken trade Auton Matthews...

Brandon Gustafson

Salk: Kraken should look to Maple Leafs for offseason upgrades

When looking at what the Seattle Kraken could do this offseason, Mike Salk thinks they should call the Maple Leafs about four players.

14 days ago

Wild beat Kraken 5-1 behind Boldy’s 2nd hat trick in 8 days