Red Wings Rebound but Fall to Oilers in Shootout

The Detroit Red Wings rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the third period to take a late 3-2 lead Tuesday night but were unable to hold on, falling to the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 in a shootout.

The point earned was just Detroit’s third in the last ten games, a slump that coincides with injuries to most of their defensemen.

Rookie Jonathan Ericsson, in the lineup to fill in on the depleted blueline, started Detroit’s comeback at 5:42 of the third period.

With the Red Wings on the power play, Valtteri Filppula sent a pass from the bottom of the left faceoff circe to Ericsson up high for a one-timer that found its way through Edmonton goalie Mathieu Garon.

Pavel Datsyuk added a second power play goal with 7:42 left in regulation, rifling a shot from the left circle over Garon’s shoulder.

Detroit took the lead with 2:16 remaining on a Valtteri Filppula goal. A stretch pass from Brett Lebda sprung Filppula into the Edmonton zone. Unable to control the puck quickly, he was left to throw a shot on net from an acute angle but it found a way into the net.

The Oilers tied the game back up with 29 seconds left, when Fernando Pisani lifted a rebound over Detroit netminder Chris Osgood in a goal-mouth scramble.

Robert Nilsson scored the only goal of the shootout to win the game for Edmonton, putting a shot past Osgood’s glove in the third round of the tiebreaker.

The Oilers had opened the scoring at 2:54 of the second period. Osgood scrambled to make a series of saves but Tom Gilbert was left open at the bottom of the left circle to take a pass and lift a shot into the net.

Geoff Sanderson extended the lead at 1:44 of the third, taking an outlet pass from Jarret Stoll and catching Ericsson flat-footed at the Detroit blueline to race in alone on Osgood and put a shot between his pads.

Osgood finished the night with 26 saves on 29 shots. Garon stopped 40 of 43 Detroit chances.

Detroit’s recently-struggling power play made good on two of seven opportunities while the Oilers went one-for-six.

Trade deadline acquisition Brad Stuart was not in the Detroit lineup.

Red Wings Acquire Defenseman Stuart from Kings

The Detroit Red Wings moved to strengthen their blue line at the NHL trade deadline on Tuesday, picking up defenseman Brad Stuart from the Los Angeles Kings for second-round and fourth-round draft picks.

The 28-year-old defenseman had played in 63 games this season for the Kings, scoring five goals and adding 16 assists in his first campaign with Los Angeles.

A first-round selection of the San Jose Sharks in 1998, Stuart has played 570 career games over eight seasons with San Jose, Boston, Calgary and Los Angeles.

He was dealt to the Bruins in the deal that sent Joe Thornton, then traded to Calgary the following season before signing as a free agent with the Kings the in the summer of 2007.

He joins a Detroit defense currently depleted by injuries to Nicklas Lidstrom, Brian Rafalski, Niklas Kronwall and Chris Chelios.

Late Night Game Stuff

Kesler just made it 4-1. I’m exhausted and going to bed.

The Canucks could score 10 more goals in the final minutes here and I won’t feel bad about the Wings’ effort tonight except on the power play. It feels like the forwards spent too much time trying to make up for the absent defense.

The good news is that it won’t be a problem forever. Eventually the team will be healthy and the power play looks a lot different with Nicklas Lidstrom and Brian Rafalski than it does with Kyle Quincey and Garrett Stafford.

Still no worries from me. I can’t wait until deadline day.

Injured Red Wings Fall to Flames

Missing half of their regular defensive corps, the Detroit Red Wings fell to the Calgary Flames Friday night in a 1-0 game that saw them lose one more blueliner.

Chris Chelios left the game in the first period after blocking a shot with the back of his leg. He attempted to return for the second period but was unable to take a shift.

With with a shorthanded defense, the Wings allowed only one goal.

The only tally of the game was scored on a broken play with 8:06 left in the first. Alex Tanguay sent the puck out front from behind the net but it deflected off the stick of Pavel Datsyuk before hitting Brett Lebda‘s shoulder and bouncing over goaltender Chris Osgood.

Osgood finished the night with 25 saves on 26 shots. Calgary netminder Miikka Kiprusoff stopped all 38 shots he faced.

Should Chelios be unable to play on Saturday in Vancouver, the Red Wings will call up either Garrett Stafford or Jakub Kindl from the Grand Rapids Griffins.

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