Special Teams Carry Red Wings to Win over Flames

The Detroit Red Wings scored three power play goals, a shorthanded goal and a goal on a penalty shot as their special teams led a 5-1 route of the Calgary Flames.

With the win, the Red Wings take a 3-2 lead in their Western Conference Quarterfinal series. Game six is Sunday night in Calgary.

A rare shorthanded penalty shot opened the game’s scoring at 3:32 of the second period. Dan Cleary raced into the Calgary zone and was tripped up by Roman Hamrlik as he got a shot off, prompting the one-on-one opportunity. Cutting through the slot, Cleary faked to his left and cut right, lifting a backhander over goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff.

Henrik Zetterberg‘s first playoff goal of the season put the Wings up by a pair at 8:50 of the middle frame. With Detroit on a power play, Zetterberg blasted a one-timer from the top of the right circle through the legs of both Tomas Holmstrom and Kiprusoff.

Just 2:04 later, Chris Chelios scored his first goal of the season with the Red Wings on the penalty kill. Kirk Maltby carried the puck into the Calgary zone and Chelios followed the play, taking a drop pass to punch a one-timer off of Kiprusoff’s arm and into the net.

Zetterberg would score again at 5:12 of the third, taking a pass from Pavel Datsyuk in the slot and lifting a shot over Kiprusoff’s shoulder.

Andrei Zyuzin got the Flames on the board 5-1 later with a shorthanded goal. Zyuzin tipped a shot by Matthew Lombardi out of the air and past Detroit netminder Dominik Hasek.

Pavel Datsyuk would close out the game’s scoring on a Detroit power play with 4:18 remaining. Nicklas Lidstrom fired a shot from the blue line wide of the net and Datsyuk jumped up to pick up the puck behind Kiprusoff, putting it into the net.

The game ended with chippy play on behalf of the Flames, an attempt to set up game six.

Before the Datsyuk goal, Daymond Langkow delivered a sucker-punch to Brett Lebda after the Detroit defenseman hit him with a hip check. Lebda was called for clipping on the play.

Dion Phaneuf and Todd Bertuzzi had a short scuffle with 4:42 remaining in the game but the real fireworks started when Wayne Primeau went off for a slash with 3:17 remaining.

Calgary coach Jim Playfair, seemingly looking to protect his star goaltender, replaced Kiprusoff in net with backup Jamie McLennan. McLennan promptly slashed Johan Franzen in front of the net. When the play was stopped, as Franzen skated by McLennan the goaltender delivered a two-handed whack to Franzen’s chest. After only 18 seconds of play, during which he faced no shots, McLennan was ejected from the game with 22 penalty minutes.

Calgary captain Jarome Iginla continued the rough play in the game’s final minute, butt-ending Mathieu Schneider before laying a cross-check on him.

The game ended with Marcus Nilson cross-checking Kris Draper, seemingly in an attempt to draw him into a fight.

Each team finished the game with eight power plays but Calgary had 47 penalty minutes to the Red Wings’ 25. Detroit scored three times and the Flames were held off the board.

Hasek stopped 23 of 24 shots against. Kiprusoff made 33 saves on 38 shots.


Kyle Calder was out of the Detroit lineup in favor of Jiri Hudler, who had played in game one and game two but was the odd-man out when Todd Bertuzzi returned for game three… The Red Wings had a goal called back at with 7:01 remaining in the first period, when Kirk Maltby was called for goaltender interference after being checked into Kiprusoff… Cleary’s goal was his first on a penalty shot… Chelios’ goal makes him the oldest player to score a shorthanded goal in the playoffs in NHL history.

Author: Clark Rasmussen

Clark founded the site that would become DetroitHockey.Net in September of 1996 with no idea what it would lead to. He continues to write for the site and executes the site's design and development.

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