Wings Down ‘Canes in a Whirlwind

Red Wings netminder Manny Legace bounced back from a neck injury suffered Saturday night against Nashville to lead Detroit to a 5-2 win over the Southeast Division-leading Carolina Hurricanes.

Legace stopped twenty-six of twenty-eight shots in a game he didn’t expect to even dress for. With Dominik Hasek sick, Legace became the starter and shut down the Hurricanes.

Detroit jumped out to an early lead when Mathieu Dandenault scored on the rebound from a Pavel Datsyuk shot just 1:22 into the first period. Datsyuk scored his first NHL goal exactly five minutes later, flipping a backhand shot past Carolina goaltender Tom Barrasso.

We got two goals out of the young line,” Detroit coach Scotty Bowman said. “Mathieu Dandenault scored one and Pavel Datsyuk scored his first NHL goal. They give us a lot of energy out there.”

Brendan Shanahan added his ninth goal of the season just over two minutes later and the Wings carried a three goal lead into the first intermission.

The Hurricanes bounced back during the second period. Sami Kapanen took a pass from Sandis Ozolinsh to get a breakaway and score with 6:35 remaining in the period. Former Red Wing Aaron Ward also assisted on the goal.

Ron Francis deflected a shot past Legace 2:09 later to bring the ‘Canes within one. Carolina kept the pressure on for the rest of the period but Legace came up strong and kept the Wings in the lead.

Steve Yzerman put the Red Wings back in control, beating Barrasso at 4:10 of the third. The Hurricanes were never able to get back in the game, and Kris Draper ended it with an empty net goal with 1:19 remaining in the game.

The Red Wings complete their three game road trip tonight against the Stars as Brett Hull makes his first trip back to Dallas since signing with Detroit. Faceoff is at 8:30 PM.

A Storm Brewing

Part five of the Red Wings Reunion Tour 2001-02 takes place tonight as Detroit heads to Carolina to face former Wing defenseman Aaron Ward and his new Hurricane teammates.

Ward’s team holds the top spot in the Eastern Conference’s Southeast Division after an overtime win against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday and Ward himself already has two assists and a plus-five rating heading into tonight’s matchup.

The Red Wings are coming off a one-to-zero win over the Nashville Predators in a game which saw backup goaltender Manny Legace suffer a minor neck injury. Legace could dress for tonight’s game. To compound matters, starting goaltender Dominik Hasek felt ill during practice Monday, forcing the Red Wings to take shots against minor-league call-up Jason Elliot.

Should both Hasek and Legace be unable to start tonight, Elliot would be forced to make his first NHL start. Elliot is 0-3-0 with Cincinatti of the AHL this season, with a 5.09 goals against average and a .813 save percentage.

Hasek is expected to start, but Red Wings General Manager Ken Holland acknowledged that any of the three netminders could play between the pipes tonight.

In the meantime, the Red Wings look to continue their road unbeaten streak. Detroit is 4-0 on the road this season, including overtime wins over the San Jose Sharks and New York Islanders.

Costly Victory?

Goaltenders Manny Legace and Domink Hasek will share Detroit’s first shutout of the season, and Steve Duchesne got his first goal of the season, as the Red Wings won 1-0 against the Nashville Predators.

With Jiri Fischer back in the lineup, Scotty Bowman moved Mathieu Dandenault back from defense to right wing on the “3-D Line” with Pavel Datsyuk and Boyd Devereaux. While this line was not able to score in this game, they did an admirable job of controlling the puck and creating scoring chances against Nashville goalie Mike Dunham.

Tomas Holmstrom got the first penalty of the game, being sent off for holding with 13:09 left in the first period. Detroit’s penalty killing was effective against Nashville, never really letting them get off a quality shot. Just twenty-four seconds before the penalty was to end, Nashville’s Patrick Kjellberg was sent out for high-sticking, to give the Red Wings a four-on-four situation and then a shortened power play.

Detroit’s power play did a good job of controlling their passes and staying in the offensive zone, but were not able to beat Dunham for a goal.

Near the end of the period, the Predators’ Scott Hartnell was hit in the face by the stick of his own teammate, Rich Brennan. Hartnell was taken to the dressing room, where he was diagnosed as having a bruised left eye.

Steve Duchesne scored the game’s lone goal two and a half minutes into the second period. Fischer passed the puck behind the net to Sergei Fedorov, who tried to pass out front to Brendan Shanahan. Shanahan was too well-covered by Nashville’s defense to pick up the puck, but Duchesne was able to snag it and shoot along the ice from the right point, to slide under Dunham and into the net.

With just over five and a half minutes left in the period, Manny Legace had just made his fifteenth big save of the game when Nashville’s Kimmo Timonen was tripped up and fell on top of him. Legace hit his head hard on the ice, and was wheeled out immobilized on a stretcher to keep him from moving his neck. Legace was taken to a Nashville hospital for x-rays and tests, but further details were unavailable as of press time. Dominek Hasek came off the bench to take Legace’s place in goal.

In the third period, control of the puck went back and forth between the two teams. Neither was able to score, although Detroit had ten shots on Dunham, several of which were quality scoring chances. Detroit tightened up defensively and held the Predators to only two shots on Hasek in the third period.

Scotty Bowman showed great confidence in his young “3-D Line” by putting them on the ice to take a defensive zone faceoff with only two minutes left to play, and leading by only one goal. Devereaux, Datsyuk, and Dandenault did not betray their coach’s trust. They got the puck out to the Predator’s zone. Devereaux attempted to score against Dunham, but the shot was blocked. The Wings kept control of the puck for the remaining seconds of the game, keeping Dunham from edging out to the bench for the sixth skater.

Dunham stopped 32 of 33 shots, while Legace stopped all of the 15 he faced, and Hasek stopped all 4 shots the Predators managed to get on him. The Wings were 0 for 5 on the power play, and 4 for 4 on the penalty kill. Their next game will be in Carolina against the Hurricanes on Tuesday.

Belfour’s Best Imitation of a Wall

The Stars were hungry for a win, after their humiliating loss to Pittsburgh. They got what they wanted. Brett Hull and Pat Verbeek came up even with two assists each, in their first game against their former teammates, as the Red Wings lost to the Dallas Stars, 5 to 3.

With defenseman Uwe Krupp out indefinitely with an injured rotator cuff, coach Scotty Bowman moved Mathieu Dandenault back to the defensive line and brought in Brent Gilchrist to play forward. Gilchrist made a defensive play which kept a loose puck from becoming a scoring opportunity for the Stars, but was unfortunately given a penalty for holding in the process. Joe Nieuwendyk was able to get the puck past Dominek Hasek off a rebound of Verbeek’s shot, eight minutes into the game.

Dallas scored again just a minute and a half later. Jamie Langenbrunner shot the puck from the point, and Shaun Van Allen tipped it in behind Hasek.

The Red Wings got a power play chance with 6:09 left to play in the first, when Verbeek was sent off for interference. Between the Dallas players intercepting many of Detroit’s passes, and goalie Ed Belfour holding onto any shot that came his way, the power play was shut down, and the score remained 2-0.

With just under a minute left in the first, Tomas Holmstrom was penalized for high-sticking Brad Lukowich. Because Lukowich was cut by Holmstrom’s stick, the penalty was automatically a four-minute double minor, and the Red Wings carried that into the second period.

Only sixteen seconds into the period, Kris Draper was given a tripping penalty. With valiant goaltending by Hasek, and clever defensive play by Nicklas Lidstrom, Chris Chelios, and Steve Yzerman, the Wings were able to kill off a full two minutes of 5-on-3 penalty.

Detroit finally got on the scoreboard with just over eight minutes in the period. Brenden Morrow had been sent to the box for tripping, and this time, the power play kept the puck in the offensive zone. Yzerman passed to Hull, who fired on Belfour. Hull picked up his own rebound and fired again, and the puck bounced off Luc Robitaille‘s skate and over the line, just as Robitaille was falling, and just before he knocked the net off its moorings.

Dallas managed to answer just over a minute later. During a tripping penalty to Steve Duchesne, Sergei Zubov fired the puck from the blue line. Hasek, being screened by Verbeek, was unable to see it, and the puck bounced in behind him.

With 2:25 left before the break, Holmstrom and Rob DiMaio were given offsetting penalties. Detroit would get to go to a 4-on-3 situation when Zubov was penalized for holding. Lidstrom made good on the power play, receiving a pass from Hull and one-timing a shot from the right point past Belfour.

Two and a half minutes into the third, Holmstrom was penalized for hooking, and Donald Audette was able to slide a backhand shot along the ice right past Hasek’s outstretched glove and into the net. The Stars scored again with just over eight minutes to play. Hasek came far out of the net to block a shot by Audette, and Pierre Turgeon picked up the rebound and flipped it into the wide open net before anyone could stop him.

Detroit made answer only sixteen seconds later. Draper won a faceoff in the Dallas zone, and Max Kuznetsov shot the puck right past the surprised Belfour.

Three and a half minutes before the end of the game, Jyrki Lumme took a tripping penalty and gave the Wings a man advantage. Bowman pulled Hasek from the net to send in an extra skater, and then the Stars’ Derian Hatcher took a penalty for cross-checking. For thirty-five seconds, the Wings would have six skaters against three.

It was not enough to get past Belfour, who made save after save to keep the Wings from scoring on him again before the game was over. Belfour and Hasek each faced forty-five shots during the game, and Robitaille and Yzerman were able to continue their scoring streaks.

The Wings begin a three-game road trip on Saturday, when they will face the Predators in Nashville.

Powerful Play

The Red Wings demonstrated tonight just why they are known for their depth, as they defeated the Edmonton Oilers 4-1 and improved their record to 8-1-0.

Control of the puck went back and forth between the two teams throughout the first period; however, the Red Wings outshot the Oilers badly, holding them to only two shots in the first twenty minutes.

Sergei Fedorov opened the scoring late in the first period. Edmonton’s Marty Reasoner received a penalty for high-sticking with 8:23 before the break. The power play unit kept control of the puck in the offensive zone, and Fedorov was able to pick up a blue line pass from Nicklas Lidstrom and rifle a shot past goalie Tommy Salo.

The Oilers got their first power play opportunity with just over a minute left to play in the first, when Kirk Maltby was given a penalty for roughing after the play. The Oilers couldn’t seem to get organized, and Yzerman and Brett Hull were able to get a breakaway scoring chance up the ice.

Detroit got another power play chance 4:31 into the second period when Jason Smith was penalized for roughing. This time, though, Edmonton’s penalty killers effectively shut down the power play’s passing.

The Red Wings’ next goal came on their very next power play. Smith was back in the box for roughing with 8:48 left in the period. Lidstrom passed the puck to Brendan Shanahan, who fired from the left point, and Tomas Holmstrom tipped the puck in underneath Salo.

Edmonton’s Anson Carter believed that he had scored on Dominek Hasek while Jiri Fischer was serving a holding penalty, but Carter stopped short and looked with disbelief into the empty net while Hasek calmly handed the puck back to the referee for the next faceoff.

The Oilers brought their number of shots up in the second, mainly due to a total of three penalties to Fischer throughout the period. Still, they remained scoreless after two.

Detroit took back control of the game in the third period. Just two-and-a-half minutes in, Lidstrom got the puck to Igor Larionov on a three-on-one rush. Larionov passed to Luc Robitaille, who took the puck at the height of its bounce and flipped it past Salo.

The young “3-D Line” also managed to make their presence felt. Pavel Datsyuk stole the puck from the Oilers at their own blue line, and passed over to Mathieu Dandenault. Dandenault lured both the defense and the goalie towards him, then passed back to Boyd Devereaux, who slid the puck into the wide open net.

Edmonton decided at that point to pull Salo from the net and send in rookie Ty Conklin to take his place. With barely ten minutes left to play, it did not provide enough momentum to help the Oilers come back, but it apparently inspired them to take away Hasek’s first potential shutout as a Red Wing. With just 5:15 left in the game, Sean Brown was able to get the puck past Detroit’s well-screened goalie.

Shanahan, Fedorov, Robitaille, and Yzerman all continued their scoring streaks. Shanahan is still the current scoring leader in the NHL. Hasek stopped 27 of 28 shots, Salo stopped 26 of 30, and Conklin stopped 7 of 7.

The Red Wings will finish their five-game homestand Friday night against the Dallas Stars.

Wings Dominate Oilers in 4-1 Win

Even after trading away captain Doug Weight over the summer, the Edmonton Oilers looked to be a tough team to beat coming into this season. On Wednesday night, the Red Wings made them look like anything but.

Detroit picked up a four to one win on goals from Sergei Fedorov, Tomas Holmstrom, Luc Robitaille and former Oiler Boyd Devereaux and steamrolled Edmonton in every statistical catagory.

The Red Wings were two-for-four on the power play. Fedorov scored midway through the first on a wicked blast with the man-advantage and Holmstrom gave the Wings a two goal lead with the redirection of a Brendan Shanahan shot while Edmonton was down a man. The Oilers were kept scorless on five power play attempts.

Detroit’s Dominik Hasek outplayed TOmmy Salo of Edmonton, with Hasek making twenty-seven stops on twenty-eight shots while Salo allowed four goals on thirty shots and was replaced by Ty Conklin at 8:13 of the third period. Haske kept the Wings ahead through a stretch in the second period when Detroit was shorthanded for several minutes, including making huge stops on Anson Carter and Eric Brewer.

At even strength, the Oilers were unable to keep up with the Red Wings. Detroit got early third period goals from Robitaille and Devereaux. Edmonton was only able to muster a late goal by Sean Brown.

It was the kind of game to be expected from the Red Wings’ All-Star lineup, and it came against a team that has been tough to beat The Wings’ next opponent will be Western Conference rival Dallas as the Stars head to Joe Louis Arena on Friday.

Wings’ Super Streaks Continue

Brendan Shanahan, Sergei Fedorov, Luc Robitaille, and Brett Hull all extended their scoring streaks by one more game as the Detroit Red Wings emerged victorious over Robitaille’s former team, the Los Angeles Kings.

Detroit opened the scoring only forty-one seconds into the game. Kris Draper fired on goalie Felix Potvin, but the puck was deflected. Shanahan picked up the rebound and fired again, but Potvin managed to block again. He wasn’t so lucky when Fedorov got hold of the second rebound, however; the puck went up and over Potvin.

The Red Wings scored again just 4:33 into the first period. Steve Yzerman, about to skate behind the net, passed out front to Brett Hull, who one-timed the puck over Potvin’s shoulder and into the net.

The Kings came back only twenty seconds later. Glen Murray picked up the puck as it bounced away from Dominek Hasek’s leg pads, and flipped it over the sprawled goalie.

Greg Johnson scored the equalizer with 6:27 left to play in the period, in a two-on-one rush against Hasek. The Kings had the opportunity to move into the lead when Steve Duchesne was given an interference penalty with just over two minutes in the period, but the Red Wings’ penalty-killers were able to keep the Kings from scoring.

Detroit was able to take a power play chance less than a minute into the second period, when Eric Belanger was given two minutes for holding the stick. The power play was able to get off three good shots against Los Angeles, but Potvin stopped each of them.

Detroit’s power play got another chance before the period was over, when Philippe Boucher was penalized for slashing. Nicklas Lidstrom passed the puck to Shanahan along the blue line. Shanahan fired from the left point, and Robitaille tipped the puck in behind Potvin.

Duchesne was given a penalty for holding with only 1:40 left in the period. Not only did the penalty-killing unit keep Los Angeles from scoring, but Hull, Draper, and Chris Chelios were each able to take shots against Potvin.

Detroit had another power play opportunity at the end of the second, when Kim Johnsson was sent to the box for cross-checking. Even though this power play generated more scoring chances, Boucher kept the puck out of the net.

Detroit got what nearly amounted to a double power play 9:33 into the third period. Boucher was called for tripping up Mathieu Dandenault, and Aren Miller was called for cross-checking with just thirteen seconds left in Boucher’s penalty. Even though coach Scotty Bowman called a timeout in-between to rest his power play unit, Detroit was unable to capitalize on their man-advantage.

Los Angeles pulled Potvin from goal when the game was down to its last minute and fifteen seconds, but the Red Wings kept the Kings from scoring again, giving Scotty Bowman the twelve-hundredth win of his career, and improving their record to 7-1-0.

The Wings continue their homestand Wednesday night against the Edmonton Oilers, who currently have a record of 6-2-1.

Fifty-nine Minutes Not Enough for Flyers

Sergei Fedorov, Luc Robitaille, and Brendan Shanahan all kept their point streaks going strong, as the Red Wings gained a dramatic come-from-behind victory over the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Flyers, who have not won a game at Joe Louis Arena since November of 1988, led through much of the game. Jeremy Roenick opened the scoring three minutes in, tipping Justin Williams’ shot past goalie Dominek Hasek.

Detroit had a power play opportunity with 12:16 remaining in the first, but Philadelphia’s penalty-killing unit was able to intercept many of Detroit’s passes and keep the Wings from scoring.

The Flyers’ turn on the power play came a little while later, when Jiri Fischer was called for cross-checking. The Red Wings’ penalty-killing unit was in good form, however, and the Flyers were unable to score.

The Flyers defense was able to shut down the Red Wings offense through most of the first period, allowing only eight shots on goaltender Brian Boucher, as compared to Philadelphia’s twelve shots against Hasek.

Luc Robitaille and Brett Hull tied up the game 5:20 into the second period, on a two-on-one rush. Hull carried the puck, lured the defenseman and the goalie towards him, and passed to Robitaille, who flipped the puck over the flopping Boucher.

Detroit wound up in penalty trouble towards the end of the period. Boucher received a delay-of-game penalty for the Flyers with 7:43 remaining, but the Wings had only twenty seconds on the power play before Robitaille was penalized for tripping.

The situation deteriorated to four-on-three when Nicklas Lidstrom was given a penalty for high-sticking, even though the replay clearly showed that the hit was made by Sergei Fedorov, not by Lidstrom. The Flyers Marty Murray was able to score just ten seconds before Lidstrom’s penalty would have ended. This was Murray’s first NHL goal in nearly six years; his last was scored on October 19, 1995.

Detroit had another power play opportunity at the end of the second, when Kim Johnsson was sent to the box for cross-checking. Even though this power play generated more scoring chances, Boucher kept the puck out of the net.

The third period stayed scoreless until near its very end. The Red Wings, seeking overtime, pulled Hasek from the net with just over a minute left to play. Finally, forty-one seceonds before the final buzzer, Fedorov picked up a pass from Brendan Shanahan, and sent the puck flying past Boucher.

The fans and players appeared to be settling in for overtime, but the Red Wings would have none of that. Only eighteen seconds before the third period’s end, Steve Yzerman picked off an errant Philadelphia pass and sent the puck across to Hull, who fired it past Boucher to score his 652nd career goal and bring the Wings’ record to 6-1-0.

Hull’s game-winning goal brought him into sixth place on the list of all-time leading goal scorers, tied with Mark Messier. The two share first place on the list of still-active goal scorers.

Luc Robitaille will face down his former teammates and the Red Wings will seek to avenge last year’s playoff defeat, when they play host to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.

Wings’ Passing Scores

A number of pretty passing plays by the Red Wings helped bring them the win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, 4 to 3.

With Darren McCarty out for at least a month with a knee injury sustained in the 10/13/01 game against the New York Islanders, Mathieu Dandenault was moved from defense back to right winger, and Steve Duchesne was brought back to play defense.

The first period was relatively quiet, for a hockey game. Both teams had scoring chances. Detroit got a power play opportunity 6:42 into the game when Kevin Dineen was sent off for cross-checking, but the power play was unable to score.

Brendan Shanahan opened the scoring with 4:01 remaining in the period. Sergei Fedorov passed the puck from the blue line up to Kris Draper, who sent it back to Shanahan. Shanahan sent the puck flying past goaltender Marc Denis, continuing his six game scoring streak and reaffirming his place as the NHL’s current high scorer.

The Wings scored again 6:52 into the second period. Jiri Fischer fired the puck from the blue line. Denis was able to block, but Luc Robitaille grabbed up the rebound and sent it into the net to continue his three game goal streak.

Fredrick Olausson was penalized for cross-checking with 10:53 left in the second. Only eleven seconds before the end of that penalty, Shanahan was sent off for slashing. The Blue Jackets’ Rotislav Klesla was able to score during the short 5-on-3 situation, firing the puck from the blue line past a well-screened Dominik Hasek.

The Wings responded with 3:48 left in the period. Boyd Devereaux passed to Olausson, and Olausson got the puck across center ice to Dandenault. Dandenault got the puck past Denis to score his 100th career point, showing that he didn’t forget how to play forward while he was back on defense.

Rookie Pavel Datsyuk nearly scored on a fast-moving breakaway early in the third period, but the Blue Jackets defense shot down his scoring opportunity and kept him from passing the puck back to Devereaux. Detroit’s fourth goal was not scored until 6:13 had gone by in the third period, when Sergei Fedorov picked up a rolling pass from Kris Draper and shot it into the net from the blue line. Chris Chelios also received an assist on that goal.

Columbus came back strong through the rest of the third. Tyler Wright flipped the puck past Hasek with 8:22 left in the game. Deron Quint was able to score three minutes later while Hasek was being screened by Dineen.

The Blue Jackets pulled their goalie with one minute remaining in the game, but six skaters were not enough to get past Hasek and the Red Wings defense a fourth time. Brett Hull nearly scored an empty net goal, but his shot went wide of the net.

Hasek stopped 19 of 22 shots, while Denis blocked 31 of 35.

The win lifted the Wings’ record to 4-1-0-0 and dropped the Islanders’ to 4-0-0-1. Detroit is off until Tuesday, when they begin their longest homestand of the season against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Red Wings hope to continue their winning ways when they host the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday night.

Invading the Island

The Red Wings headed to Long Island last night to face former Wing netminder Chris Osgood in his new team’s home opener. The Islanders were looking to continue a banner four game unbeaten streak as the Wings were looking to add to their win Friday night against Buffalo.

Oleg Kvasha opened the scoring only thirty-six seconds into the game, scoring off the rebound from a shot by Alexei Yashin.

Claude Lapointe was penalized for boarding just over two minutes into the period and the ensuing power play did not disappoint. Steve Yzerman passed the puck to Sergei Fedorov, who blasted it past Osgood. Brendan Shanahan also received an assist on the goal, extending his scoring streak to five games, reaffirming his place as the NHL’s current top scorer.

The score remained tied for the rest of the first period, with the Islanders outshooting Detroit fourteen to seven.

Early in the second period, Darren McCarty and Oleg Kvasha accidentally knocked ankles. Kvasha was taken immediately to the dressing room, but did return later in the game. McCarty tried to shake off the pain back on the bench, but headed to the locker room shortly thereafter. It was later announced that McCarty’s injury was an ankle sprain.

With Igor Larionov off for slashing, Yashin scored on Legace. The goal stood up to review and the Islanders took a two to one lead.

Brett Hull scored the answering goal with only 3:04 left in the period. Lapointe was off for cross-checking Lidstrom. Hull got the puck from Chris Chelios and shot it into the net, past a rolling block attempt by Osgood.

Early in the third period, Yashin scored again, this time on a screened shot. The Wings were able to reply on a delayed penalty. With Legace on the bench, Yzerman picked up a rebound and stuffed it into the net.

Early in the third period, Yashin scored again, this time on a screened shot. The Wings were able to reply on a delayed penalty. With Legace on the bench, Yzerman picked up a rebound and stuffed it into the net.

With Legace on the bench for the extra attacker, Luc Robitaille came to the rescue. Lucky Luc slid the puck behind Osgood with only ten seconds remaining, sending the game to overtime.

Both goaltenders made big stops in the overtime period but it was a save by Legace that led to the winning goal. Yzerman picked up Legace’s rebound and sent it to Draper. Draper and Hull had a breakaway and Yzerman trailed. Only one Islander was back to defend and Draper passed the puck to Hull, who sent it back to Yzerman. Yzerman did what he does best, and the puck soared over Osgood and into the net.

The win lifted the Wings’ record to 4-1-0-0 and dropped the Islanders’ to 4-0-0-1. Detroit is off until Tuesday, when they begin their longest homestand of the season against the Columbus Blue Jackets.