The Detroit Red Wings earned a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks Saturday afternoon, giving them a 3-2 lead in their Western Conference Semifinal series and putting them one win away from the Conference Finals.
If the Red Wings win game six in San Jose on Monday or game seven in Detroit on Wednesday, they will advance to face the Anaheim Ducks. San Jose would need to win both games to eliminate Detroit.
As they did in their previous two wins, the Red Wings had to come from behind to get the win.
After a Marcel Goc goal at 4:53 of the first period, Henrik Zetterberg tied things up just 3:10 into the second.
Nicklas Lidstrom got the puck on net and Tomas Holmstrom brought it across the top of the crease, trying to get a shot off. It came to Zetterberg at the side of the net and he lifted a shot over San Jose goaltender Evgeni Nabokov and into the top of the net.
Pavel Datsyuk put Detroit out in front with 3:47 remaining in the period on a miscue by Nabokov.
The puck was cleared into the San Jose zone and Nabokov came out of his crease to play it. He tried to clear it away but Datsyuk was racing in to challenge him and Nabokov’s pass ended up in Datsyuk’s skates. Datsyuk got control of the puck and skated it into the open San Jose net for the eventual game-winner.
Mikael Samuelsson and Tomas Holmstrom added insurance goals on two third period power plays.
Samuelsson scored on a one-timer from the right faceoff circle at 3:46 of the period and Holmstrom scored from the front of the net at 6:14.
The two goals accounted for all of Detroit’s power play scoring. San Jose did not score with the man-advantage. Each team had six tries with the extra skater.
Nabokov finished the game with 29 saves on 33 Detroit shots. Red Wings’ netminder Dominik Hasek made 23 stops on 24 San Jose attempts.
The Red Wings suffered a blow in the first period when defenseman Mathieu Schneider
broke his wrist on a hit from San Jose captain Patrick Marleau
. Schneider is expected to miss the remainder of the playoffs. Brett Lebda
will return from his ankle injury to replace Schneider in the lineup… The Sharks were without Bill Guerin, who is expected to return for game six after taking a puck to the face in game four.