Blackhawks to face Wild in first round

The Chicago Blackhawks will play the Minnesota Wild in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The Wild secured the No. 8 spot in the Western Conference with a 3-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday. The Wild finished with a 26-19-3 record and 55 points. They edged out the Columbus Blue Jackets, who also won Saturday and had a 24-17-7 record with 55 points, by having more ROW (regulation + overtime wins), which is used as a tiebreaker. The Wild had 22 ROW, and the Blue Jackets had 19.

The Blackhawks went 2-0-1 against the Wild this season. The Wild won 3-2 in a shootout in Minnesota on Jan. 30. The Blackhawks won 5-3 in Chicago on March 5 and 1-0 in Minnesota on April 1.

The Blackhawks outshot the Wild in all three games and 95-68 overall. The Wild outhit the Blackhawks in all three games and 66-38 overall. The Blackhawks had 13 giveaways to the Wild’s nine. The Blackhawks had 20 takeaways to the Wild’s 23. The Blackhawks won 92 faceoffs, and the Wild won 89. The Blackhawks were 0-for-7 on the power play and 6-for-7 on the penalty kill against the Wild.

Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford was 1-0-1, allowed five goals and made 43 saves in two games against the Wild this season. Blackhawks goaltender Ray Emery was 1-0-0, allowed zero goals and made 20 saves in one game this season.

Blackhawks forwards Marian Hossa and Bryan Bickell each had two goals and one assist against the Wild this season.

The Blackhawks have lost in the first round of the playoffs the last two seasons after winning the Stanley Cup in 2010. The Wild haven't appeared in the playoffs since the 2007-08 season and haven't advanced past the first round since the 2002-03 season.