Filppula Scores Twice as Red Wings Defeat Predators, 4-1

Valtteri Filppula scored two goals and added an assist Saturday night, leading the Detroit Red Wings to a 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators.

Filppula opened the game’s scoring with 6:37 remaining in the first period, lifting a backhander from an acute angle over sprawled Nashville goalie Pekka Rinne after a Todd Bertuzzi chance bounced off the post.

Henrik Zetterberg made it 2-0 just 1:31 into the second period. Zetterberg picked drifted backwards from in close to Rinne, outwaiting him before firing a shot from the left faceoff circle into the top of the net.

At 8:34 of the period, Filppula’s second put the Red Wings up by three. Jakub Kindl threw a shot towards the net that was deflected by both Jiri Hudler and Filppula to get past Rinne.

Danny Cleary finished off Detroit’s scoring at 4:03 of the third period. Darren Helm stole the puck from Mike Fisher as the Predators attempted to clear their zone, then sent a pass to Cleary in the right faceoff circle for a one-timer past Rinne.

Nashville’s lone goal came 1:31 later, when Jack Hillen snuck in behind Helm and Jonathan Ericsson in the slot to take a pass from Colin Wilson and tip it past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard.

Howard, making his fifteenth consecutive start, needed to make only 18 saves on 19 shots. Detroit held Nashville to only eight shots in the game’s first forty minutes.

Rinne made 33 saves on the Red Wings’ 37 shots.

Filppula’s first goal was the only power play tally of the night. Detroit had two chances with the extra attacker while Nashville had three,

After three games in four nights, the Red Wings are off until Wednesday when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning.


Detroit forward Patrick Eaves left the game late in the third period after taking a Roman Josi shot to the side of his head. He was taken to the Detroit Medical Center for observation, where he is expected to be held overnight… Cory Emmerton, Fabian Brunnstrom and Mike Commodore were the Red Wings’ healthy scratches.

Postgame: Predators @ Red Wings – 11/26

I don’t know if it was the quality (or lack thereof) of the opponent but the Red Wings looked better tonight, on the second game of a back-to-back set, than they did in Boston yesterday. It felt like Detroit had the puck all game, especially in the first two periods when they limited the Predators to only eight shots.

Of course, that gets overshadowed a bit by the injury to Patrick Eaves late in the game. No news about the severity yet but that puck didn’t look like it got his helmet, looked to me like he took it straight to the ear. I’m no doctor, I won’t even try to guess what that means for him.

As for the Wings, they currently sit on top of the Western Conference, a position that could change by the end of the night. They own a five-game winning streak and have taken eight of their last ten. Not bad considering they started the month wrapping up a six-game losing streak.

Red Wings End Bruins’ Streak in Shootout

Todd Bertuzzi scored on the final shot of the shootout Friday afternoon, giving the Detroit Red Wings a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins in the NHL’s inaugural Thanksgiving Showdown.

Detroit’s victory ended a ten-game Boston winning streak.

Bertuzzi beat Bruins’ netminder Tuukka Rask on Detroit’s third shootout shot, swinging out to his right before backing in towards Rask and flipping ther puck past him.

Pavel Datsuyk also scored in the tiebreaker, while Nathan Horton beat Detroit’s Jimmy Howard.

The Bruins controlled play for much of the game but it was the Red Wings who scored first. With 7:17 remaining in the opening period, Valtteri Filppula carried the puck into the Boston zone and passed it off to Henrik Zetterberg, who sent it back to Filppula for a tip from the top of the crease past Rask.

Boston’s Daniel Paille tied things up at 4:05 of the second. Attempting to clear the puck from behind his net, Howard sent a pass along the boards right onto the stick of a forechecking Horton. Horton put it out to Paille, who was able to backhand a shot into the net as Howard dove to get back into position.

Datsyuk restored the Red Wings’ lead just 35 seconds later. Bertuzzi sent a pass from the right wing boards between defenseman Zdeno Chara‘s legs to Datsyuk in the right faceoff circle. As he cut to the goal alone, Datsyuk kicked the puck from his skate to his stick and batted it past Rask.

Patrice Bergeron tied the game back up at 7:52 of the third period. Zetterberg bobbled a pass in the left faceoff circle of his own end and Bergeron picked up the loose puck before driving a shot past Howard.

Howard finished the night with 41 saves on 43 Boston chances. Rask stopped 29 of Detroit’s 31 shots.

Neither team scored a power play goal. The Wings had three tries with the extra attacker while the Bruins had two.

The win temporarily put the Red Wings in first place in the Central Division, a spot they relenquished when the Chicago Blackhawks won later in the day.


Patrick Eaves, Fabian Brunnstrom and Mike Commodore were the healthy scratches for Detroit. Brunnstrom did not make the trip to Boston as the team allowed him to stay home with his wife, who is expecting their first child.

Postgame: Red Wings @ Bruins – 11/25

The inaugural “Thanksgiving Showdown” was a pretty interesting game, as I think you could argue that neither team deserved the win through 60 minutes this afternoon. Then you hit overtime and it’s just back and forth chances, a fantastic five minutes, you think neither team deserves to lose. The Red Wings picking up the extra point in the shootout isn’t something I mind but that game could have ended in a tie and I don’t think anyone would have complained.

It’s weird because the Bruins controlled most of the game but their only goals came off of horrible miscues by Detroit. Jimmy Howard and Henrik Zetterberg‘s uncharacteristic giveaways were the only way Boston was able to get on the board.

At the other end of the ice, the Red Wings were limited in their chances and never really got much going, but still managed to score twice.

Detroit nearly won almost entirely based on their defensive effort but shot themselves in the foot enough to deserve to lose. The Bruins played well enough to win easily but their scoring doesn’t show it.

Holmstrom Leads Red Wings Past Flames

Tomas Holmstrom scored twice on the power play Wednesday night, helping the Detroit Red Wings to a 5-3 win over the visiting Calgary Flames.

The goals lifted Holmstrom into a tie with Brendan Shanahan for fifth place all-time in Red Wings power play goals scored.

Holmstrom opened the game’s scoring at 6:14 of the first period, deflecting a shot intentionally fired wide of the net by Nicklas Lidstrom past Calgary netminder Miikka Kiprusoff midway through a Detroit power play.

Jarome Iginla evened things back up just 44 seconds into the second, getting the puck on the right wing on a three-on-two and wristing a shot past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard.

Brendan Morrison put the Flames up 2-1 2:12 later, getting into the left faceoff circle untouched and blasting a shot past Howard.

Former Flame Ian White, appearing in his first game since blocking a shot with his face on November 12, tied things back up at 7:38 of the middle frame. White drifted from the high slot to the right wing boards with the puck, finally flinging a shot on net that found its way through past Kiprusoff.

Holmstrom’s second of the night put the Red Wings back into the lead. At 2:42 of the third he took a Pavel Datsyuk pass at the edge of the crease and spun around, backhanding a shot past Kiprusoff from in close.

Calgary’s Olli Jokinen replied 2:24 later, snapping a shot from the left faceoff circle past Howard for a power play goal.

Pavel Datsyuk put the Red Wings in front yet again with 7:21 remaining. With the Red Wings on a two-man advantage, Datsyuk sent the puck to the front of the net and it deflected off the skate of defenseman Jay Bouwmeester, bouncing through Kiprusoff’s pads.

Valtteri Filppula made it 5-3 1:14 later when his backhand attempt deflected off the stick of defenseman Chris Butler and past Kiprusoff just three seconds after the close of a power play chance.

The Red Wings finished the night three-for-four on the power play. The Flames scored on one of their four tries with the extra attacker.

Howard made 19 saves on 22 shots against while Kiprusoff stopped 25 of the 30 Detroit chances he faced.

The Red Wings, winners of three in a row, next play in Boston in the inaugural Thanksgiving Showdown on Friday.


With Ian White’s return to the Detroit lineup, Brendan Smith was a healthy scratch. Smith was kept in Detroit in case Brad Stuart was unable to play but with both White and Stuart healthy, Smith was returned to the Griffins after the game… Fabian Brunnstrom was sent to the Griffins for the night to make room for Smith on the roster. He returned to Detroit when Smith was sent down… Patrick Eaves and Mike Commodore were healthy scratches for the Red Wings.

Postgame: Flames @ Red Wings – 11/23

Tonight’s win wasn’t the cleanest the Wings have had this season but it had a lot of good points, including the two points in the standings that the team will take regardless of how they played.

I said after the first period that it was a bit slow but that the Red Wings had managed to limit Calgary’s chances so it was good. To start the second period, Detroit continued to play slow while the Flames came out with jump and took advantage. Detroit can’t expect to coast and it could have bit them in the ass tonight.

Jarome Iginla‘s goal was textbook execution of an odd-man rush, aided by the fact that there seemingly was miscommunication on whether Nicklas Lidstrom or the backchecking Detroit forward would be covering him. Brendan Morrison’s goal was in part a rookie/lazy mistake by Jakub Kindl, who ended up covering no one on the play. The Wings need to make sure they don’t make a habit of plays like those.

That said, three out of four on the power play (and one just after the expiration of the man-advantage) is a very good thing to see from special teams that haven’t been great this season. Tomas Holmstrom had a dominant night in front of Miikka Kiprusoff, with his two power play goals moving him into a tie with Brendan Shanahan for fifth place all-time in Red Wings power play goals.

I said that Calgary’s third goal came off them taking advantage of the opportunity given to them when Darren Helm lost his stick. The Wings returned the favor with their fourth and fifth goals. Stupid penalty by Curtis Glencross put the Wings on the five-on-three and they made it work.