New Jersey Devils draft pick Brendan Shanahan helped the Detroit Red Wings defeat his former team, scoring twice as the Red Wings earned a 5-2 win over the visiting Devils.
The Devils made Shanahan the second overall pick in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft, an event which took place at Detroit’s Joe Louis Arena. Shanahan played four seasons with New Jersey.
The Devils opened the game’s scoring just 4:04 in when a hard shot from the blue line by Sean Brown bounced around on its way to the net. By the time it came to Viktor Kozlov to the right of Detroit goalie Chris Osgood, Osgood had lost track of the puck and Kozlov was open to put it past him.
Shanahan’s first goal of the night pulled Detroit even with 7:00 left in the period. He got the puck on the far side of the left circle and outwaited New Jersey netminder Scott Clemmensen, getting him to come to the near post and drop down before firing a shot over his shoulder to the far side.
New Jersey regained the lead on a goal by rookie Zach Parise. Osgood stopped a long shot by Vladimir Malakhov but kicked the rebound out to Parise to his left. Parise had an open net and didn’t miss as the Devils went up, 2-1, at 8:34 of the second.
The former Devil Shanahan tied the game again 3:23 later with the Red Wings on a power play. Taking a pass from Mikael Samuelsson, he fired a one-timer from the inside edge of the right circle to beat Clemmensen.
The Red Wings controlled the game from that point, scoring twice more in the period.
Jason Williams put Detroit up by two with 1:39 left in the period. Henrik Zetterberg won a hard fight for the puck along the end boards behind the New Jersey goal and sent it out the Williams, who scored on a one-timer highly similar to Shanahan’s.
Slumping Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman scored the game’s final goal. As the Devils cleared their zone, Holmstrom dropped to a knee to stop the puck just outside the blue line and get it to Cleary. With the Devils scrambling to get back on defense, Cleary gained the zone along the left wing boards and sent a pass to Yzerman, breaking into the slot all alone. Yzerman went in on net and faked out Clemmensen, skating around him to put the puck in the net for his fourth goal of the season.
Detroit snapped a two-game home losing streak with the win.
The Red Wings went one-for-three on the power play while stopping all five New Jersey chances with the man-advantage.
Osgood stopped 25 of 27 shots on the night, including two highlight-reel saves in the third. Clemmenson made 39 saves on the 44 shots he faced.
Detroit will be back in action on Friday when they visit the Washington Capitals.
The game was the 1000th scheduled regular season game at Joe Louis Arena.