Red Wings Ride Three-goal First Period to 4-1 Win over Sabres

The Detroit Red Wings scored three times in the first period and never looked back, cruising to a 4-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres Friday night.

Jakub Kindl, Johan Franzen, and Valtteri Filppula provided the offense in the game's opening frame, continuing a trend that sees the Red Wings undefeated when either Franzen or Filppula scores.

Kindl opened the game's scoring 8:50 in. After the Sabres failed to clear their zone, Kindl threw a shot from the left point on net, handcuffing Buffalo goalie Jhonas Enroth for his first goal of the season.

Franzen made it 2-0 with 6:22 left in the first. With Detroit on a power play, Franzen got the puck in the slot and put a wrister past Enroth.

Just 1:03 later, Henrik Zetterberg took the puck away from Jochen Hecht at the Buffalo blue line and fed a streaking Filppula, who jumped up into the slot and snapped a shot by Enroth to make it 3-0.

Hecht would eventually atone for his giveaway, getting the Sabres on the board with 6:13 left in regulation. Hecht raced down the ice with Jason Pominville on a two-on-one, taking a pass from Pominville to beat Detroit netminder Jimmy Howard stick-side.

Hecht's goal would not be the start of a Buffalo comeback, however. Pavel Datsyuk rounded out the game's scoring with an empty-net goal from center ice.

Franzen's goal was the lone power play goal of the night. Detroit had five tries with the extra attacker while Buffalo had four.

Howard made 27 saves on 28 shots in earning the win. Enroth stopped 32 of the 35 shots he faced.

The Red Wings continue their three-game road trip on Monday when they visit the Colorado Avalanche.

Notes: Detroit forward Chris Conner made his first appearance of the season, skating on the third line with Darren Helm and Danny Cleary after having been called up from the Grand Rapids Griffins on Wednesday night... Fabian Brunnstrom is not travelling with the team, as they've allowed him to spend time with his wife and newborn son before he will be sent back to the Griffins... Cory Emmerton and Mike Commodore were healthy scratches... Justin Abdelkader left the game in the third period after taking a high hit but later said he would be fine.

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The Red Wings kick off a three-game road trip tonight in Buffalo, looking to extend their six-game winning streak.

The Sabres will see goalie Ryan Miller dress for the first time since taking a hit from Boston's Milan Lucic three weeks ago but Jhonas Enroth is expected to get the start.

Chris Conner will make his first appearance as a Red Wing tonight, swapping into the lineup for Fabian Brunnstrom, who the Red Wings will waive and attempt to return to the Grand Rapids Griffins after he's spent some time with his wife and newborn son.

Cory Emmerton, who may or may not be banged up, is Detroit's other healthy scratch up front. Mike Commodore is the healthy scratch on defense.

Jimmy Howard gets the start yet again for Detroit.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 6:31 PM


Enroth should have had that. That's why you throw it on net.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 7:52 PM


Mule didn't really even look like he was trying there. Love it when they make it look simple.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 8:02 PM


Great shot by Fil but, man, Enroth was square to him. Two kinda weak goals against.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 8:08 PM


Can't complain about that start. Fil is on fire lately, love seeing that since he's shown flashes of it for years.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 8:17 PM


Ugh. Wings can't rely on Jimmy all the time, his stick isn't as good as his glove.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 12/2/2011 at 9:50 PM


Can't complain about that start. Fil is on fire lately, love seeing that since he's shown flashes of it for years.

I just want to take this opportunity to (sheepishly) retract my earlier dismissal of Filppula, Bertuzzi and Hudler. They each seem to have picked up their games individually during this streak of wins, but especially Filppula. (Bertuzzi seems to wear a target on his back to be called for each and every misdemeanor, which continues to be a burden to the team...nevermind.)

Posted by OldBroad on 12/3/2011 at 9:49 AM

Valtteri Filppula

Valtteri Filppula
Credit: Clark Rasmussen

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