The Wolves’ Aubry Rodin shoots the puck around the boards Friday at Allstate Arena. | Steve Woltmann~Wolves
Updated: January 9, 2013 6:14AM
The Wolves should thank goalie Matt Climie. He’s the reason coach Scott Arniel won’t completely trash the team in the coming days.
The Wolves were terrible in nearly every facet of their 3-0 loss to the Grand Rapids Griffins on Friday at Allstate Arena. They were outshot 37-19 in what would have been a blowout if it weren’t for the outstanding play of Climie, who has played at a high level all season.
“It’s adversity, but championship teams, good teams, find ways to overcome that adversity,” Climie said. “We can use that as motivation and really, really get a solid game from it and learn from our mistakes.”
In the second period, the Wolves (9-9-2-1) managed only four shots, tying a season low for a period. It has happened four other times.
Through two periods, the Wolves managed only nine shots, their lowest two-period output this season.
The team has struggled to assert itself offensively all season. That has resulted in the benching of several big-name players.
Jordan Schroeder and Zack Kassian sat out the 3-1 victory over the Peoria Rivermen last Saturday. Captain and right wing Darren Haydar sat out his second consecutive game Friday. Those drastic measures still haven’t helped Arniel reach his team.
After the game, the Wolves had a players-only meeting.
“We play a good game the other night, I have to make a statement by sitting guys out and then the next game we come back and it’s back to where we were, not playing a whole team game,” Arniel said.
The Wolves’ defense was even worse. It appeared as though they didn’t get in front of a single shot.
The Griffins (12-7-1-1) scored their first goal on defenseman Adam Almquist’s slap shot, which went off the skate of Wolves defenseman Kevin Connauton, one minute into the second period.
Joakim Andersson and Tomas Tatar scored for Grand Rapids in the third period. Both were left unaccounted for in front of the net.