I called last night’s win “gritty” but it looks like “gutsy” has been the word of choice for the rest of the writers out there.
Either way, the Red Wings took a game they probably had no right being in, battled it out, and took away two points from it. And did it without anyone getting hurt, it would seem. There’s no way to treat any of that as a negative.
Jimmy Howard? Slump over. Between this game and the end of the Calgary game, he’s back. Save of the night, possible save of the year, was his stop on Daniel Sedin early on. Fantastic glove stop. Great positioning on some later chances, including in the shootout. Definitely playing with some confidence.
One negative on Howard? Rebound control. Vancouver’s goal came when he kicked the puck right to Daniel Sedin. I’m not really sure I want to hold that against him too much but I’ve been harping on rebound control all season so I think I should at least mention that it’s still a bit of an issue.
I’ll say it again, Henrik Zetterberg didn’t score but he was leading the Wings’ offensive efforts. The pass to Franzen on Detroit’s lone regulation goal was beautiful (as was Franzen’s ability to take it and his shot). Zata played a ridiculous 24:52. Franzen was second among Detroit forwards at 20:16. Zetterberg is being heavily leaned on to carry the load right now.
Another stat I find interesting… Patrick Eaves was third on the Wings with three shots (behind Zetterberg and Franzen) in 16:30 of play (good for fifth among forwards, which makes sense given his second-line role, though 4:06 of it was on the PK).
On the Canucks… No wonder they’re leading the NHL. That’s a high powered team right there. Roberto Luongo might be a diver but the rest of the team did a good job of keeping the foot on the gas for a full 65 minutes.
After a big win like this, I’m expecting a letdown in Colorado on Monday. We’ll see.