Red Wings Face Elimination After Game Four Loss to Predators

The Detroit Red Wings are one loss from elimination from the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs after dropping Game Four of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series with the Nashville Predators, 3-1.

The Predators now lead the series 3-1 as it heads back to Nashville for Game Five.

The Red Wings dominated the scoreless first two periods of the game, carrying a 28-11 shooting advantage into the third. It would be Nashville, however, that opened the game's scoring.

Just 1:55 into the period, Gabriel Bourque was left along in front of Detroit netminder Jimmy Howard to take a feed from Alexander Radulov and snap a shot into the back of the net. The goal came shortly after the Predators thought they had made it 1-0 but an apparent goal was called off on an "intent to blow" play.

The Red Wings would even things up at 3:14. Niklas Kronwall's rocket from the blue line was tipped in front of the net by Jiri Hudler, with the deflection rising over Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne for a power play goal.

At 6:25, the Predators regained the lead when three Red Wings followed Martin Erat into the corner and Howard shifted right to track the play. This left Patrick Holmqvist and Kevin Klein wide open in front, and Erat fed Klein for an easy shot into the vacated net.

The Predators finished off the scoring with 39 seconds left in regulation. With Nashville on a power play, Danny Cleary attempted to carry the puck out from behind his own goal and start a rush. At the side of the crease, David Legwand poked the puck off his stick and it slipped through Howard, ending Detroit's chance at a comeback.

Each team had a power play goal on the night, with the Red Wings having seven power plays to Nashville's three.

Howard made 14 saves on 17 shots against while Rinne stopped 40 of 41 chances.

Game Five of the series will be on Friday.

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User Comments

After coming out completely flat in a virtual must-win in Game Three, the Red Wings face even more of one in Game Four. A loss tonight would put Detroit in a position of needing to take three straight against the Predators, with two of those games coming in Nashville. A win evens the series and forces a Game Six back in Detroit on Sunday, no matter what happens in Friday's Game Five.

The Red Wings are playing around with their lines, with Danny Cleary expected to move on to Pavel Datsyuk's line and Todd Bertuzzi swapping down to Justin Abdelkader's third line. Ian White has been paired back up with Nicklas Lidstrom on defense while Jonathan Ericsson and Kyle Quincey pair back up.

The Predators will be without Hal Gill again and are expecting to make a change on defense. David Legwand may move to the fourth line.

Game time is 7:30 PM on FSD/NBCSN.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 4:33 PM


And my Internet connection is acting up, so we'll see how much commenting I do.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 7:20 PM


Wings were the better team, needed to come out of that period with a lead. A little worried.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 8:26 PM


Have to score here, pushing their luck.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 9:10 PM


Fantastic tip and a hell of a shot as the Wings even things up after a stupid first goal for Nashville.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 9:52 PM


Another time the Wings *have* to take advantage. Finally getting the calls, not scoring on the chances.

Posted by YzerFan19 on 4/17/2012 at 10:12 PM

Jiri Hudler

Jiri Hudler
Credit: Clark Rasmussen

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