Postgame: Red Wings @ Canadiens – 10/17

Nope. I don’t wanna. I don’t wanna write about the Red Wings’ loss to the Canadiens.I said on Montreal Hockey Talk before the game that I expected a Detroit loss and it happened for exactly the reasons I expected it. The Wings’ defense is not what it needs to be to compete with the top teams in the league on a regular basis. The top pair of Niklas Kronwall and Jonathan Ericsson is not a top pair on most of the elite teams and it dominos from there. Ericsson had an awful night. Mike Green had a brutal turnover that turned into a goal. Kyle Quincey‘s horrific misplaying of the puck led directly to Montreal’s first goal.

Which shouldn’t have happened anyway, of course.

Look, I know there are a lot of people who say that because the Wings ended up losing by three, it’s not worth complaining about one goal. Take that goal away and Montreal still wins. Yeah, but alternate history isn’t a matter of math. Take that goal away and everything after it changes. Maybe a Canadiens team playing from behind gambles more and loses. Maybe the Red Wings get cocky and make even more mistakes. We don’t know.

If that sounds familiar, it’s because I’ve said it before.

Speaking of blasts from the past, I brought it up on Twitter but I think it’s interesting to compare a blown off goal from almost a year ago in Montreal to the allowed one tonight.

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Apparently, when the goalie is Carey Price it’s impossible to stop the puck while someone’s skate is touching your pad, but if you’re Petr Mrazek you’d better just find a way to make it work.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Canadiens – 10/17

Fresh off their first loss of the season, a 5-3 embarrassment to the Carolina Hurricanes, the Detroit Red Wings travel to Montreal to visit the unbeaten Canadiens.

The Red Wings will have some fresh faces in the lineup for the matchup. Joakim Andersson, a healthy scratch for the previous four games, will make his first appearance of the season. Joining him on the fourth line will be Darren Helm as he returns from a shoulder injury and concussion. Danny DeKeyser will skate on a blue line pairing with Mike Green, having recovered from his ankle injury.

To make room for the trio, Landon Ferraro, Tomas Jurco, and Brendan Smith will be healthy scratches.

Petr Mrazek will get the start in goal for Detroit, his second of the season.

Stupid stat of the day: The Red Wings have lost six consecutive games to the Canadiens. Their longest losing streak to Montreal is seven games.

Game time is 7:00 PM on FSD. I’ll be appearing on Montreal Hockey Talk at about 6:20 PM for pre-game coverage.

Postgame: Hurricanes @ Red Wings – 10/16

I picked a good game to miss, apparently. Not that what I was watching in Grand Rapids was much better.

Catching back up on highlights and reports, there are clearly good things and bad to take from the 5-3 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes.

Any loss to a previously-winless team stings. A loss like this doubly-so. Giving up five goals to a team that had only scored five goals all season? Brutal. Jimmy Howard didn’t play up to the level he had been at for his first two games of the season, which earned him the first consecutive starts by a Detroit goalie this year. Rebound control, long an issue for him, came back to bite him again. That said, the defense couldn’t move the puck. Or clear the puck. It looked like the duct-taped blue line that it is.

Oh the plus side, three goals for in an awful game. I mean, Cam Ward isn’t a good goalie, but the offense kept clicking so at least it wasn’t a complete failure. And, hey, point streaks for Henrik Zetterberg and Dylan Larkin.

Next up is Montreal. A game like Friday’s from Detroit and that’ll be a blowout.

Pregame: Hurricanes @ Red Wings – 10/16

For the second weekend in a row, the Red Wings are looking at back-to-back games featuring a matchup against the Carolina Hurricanes. This time the Wings are hosting the Canes in the first game of the set.

Detroit will roll the same lineup as they used to defeat the Tampa Bay Lightning, 3-1 on Tuesday night. Forward Johan Franzen has been placed on short-term IR with the return of his concussion-like symptoms. Luke Glendening, after sitting out Thursday’s practice, is good to go. Neither Darren Helm nor Danny DeKeyser are ready to make their first appearance of the season, though both are possible for Saturday in Montreal.

Jimmy Howard gets the start in goal, marking the first time in the young season that the Red Wings go with the same goalie for consecutive games. Petr Mrazek will get consecutive starts in Montreal and Edmonton.

Stupid stat of the day: This marks the fifth time since 2000 that the Red Wings have faced the same team twice in the first four games of the season. It’s just the second time that it was not part of back-to-backs. The first was last year against Boston.

Game time is 7:30 PM on FSD.

Red Wings Place Franzen on IR

The Detroit Red Wings placed forward Johan Franzen on injured reserve on Thursday, citing a return of his concussion-like symptoms.

Franzen was placed on short-term injured reserve but is out indefinitely.

“I think right now, we don’t know what the future’s going to hold,” Red Wings’ head coach Jeff Blashill said. “We’re focused on the 20 guys we’re going to have dressed tomorrow night.

“Obviously, we want him to get well, but again I don’t know what that means, I don’t know what the future holds with that.”

Franzen, 35, suffered a concussion (reportedly his 10th) on January 6th in Edmonton and didn’t play for the rest of the 2014-15 season. In early September he said that he needed to sleep for the rest of the day after a four-hour workout but he was cleared to play in time for training camp by doctors at the University of Michigan.

In the first two games of the new season, Franzen had an assist playing in a third-line role with Riley Sheahan and Teemu Pulkkinen.

Franzen missed Detroit’s third game of the season against the Tampa Bay Lightning and hasn’t skated in two days.

Red Wings Down Lightning in Playoff Rematch

Almost six months after the Lightning bounced the Red Wings from the playoffs, Detroit defeated Tampa Bay, 3-1, in their first meeting of the 2015-16 season.

After a scoreless first period, Gustav Nyquist got the Red Wings on the board with 2:08 left in the middle frame. Twelve seconds into a power play, Nyquist snapped a shot from the left faceoff dot over the shoulder of Lightning netminder Ben Bishop.

Henrik Zetterberg made it 2-0 at 8:25 of the third period. Dylan Larkin fed Zetterberg in the high slot for a shot through a screen by Justin Abdelkader and past Bishop to extend Detroit’s lead.

Tampa Bay cut the lead back to a single goal with 8:57 left in regulation. A set play off an offensive-zone faceoff win got the puck to Ryan Callahan at the top of the left circle to snap a shot past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard, the first goal against Howard all season.

Kyle Quincey added an empty net goal to round out the game’s scoring and end Tampa’s comeback hopes.

Each team finished the night with three power play chances. Detroit scored on one of theirs while Tampa Bay went without a goal.

Howard made 20 saves on 21 shots. Bishop made 21 saves on 23 shots faced.

The Red Wings look to make it four wins in a row to start the season on Friday when they host the Carolina Hurricanes.


Johan Franzen was a late scratch for the Red Wings. He was replaced in the lineup by Landon Ferraro, who was going to be out of the lineup to make room for Tomas Jurco‘s first appearance of the season.

Pregame: Lightning @ Red Wings – 10/13

The Detroit Red Wings host the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight, facing off against the team that knocked them out of the playoffs last season.

The Lightning are coming off of their first win of the season in a matinee game against the Boston Bruins on Monday. Detroit is unbeaten after a comeback win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night.

Detroit’s lineup will feature two changes from the game in Carolina, as Jimmy Howard takes his turn in goal (replacing Petr Mrazek) and Tomas Jurco makes his first appearance of the season, replacing Landon Ferraro.

Stupid stat of the game: The Red Wings are 17-29-5 all-time in their first game of the season against the team that eliminated them from the playoff the previous year.

Game time is 7:30 PM on NBCSN.

Pulkkinen’s Pair Leads Red Wings Over Hurricanes

Despite being outshot by a wide margin, the Detroit Red Wings rode two third-period goals by Teemu Pulkkinen to a 4-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night.

Detroit trailed 2-1 heading into the final frame but Pulkkinen tied things up at 4:39 of the period. Carolina defender Ron Hainsey won a puck battle along the end boards and attempted to clear it through the slot, but Pulkkinen had jumped up and picked off the pass, banging a shot past goalie Cam Ward to make it 2-2.

Just 1:57 later, Pulkkinen deflected a shot from Tomas Tatar at the top of the left faceoff circle past Ward to give the Red Wings the lead.

With 3:35 remaining in regulation, Justin Abdelkader rifled a shot from the slot past Ward off a feed from behind the goal by Henrik Zetterberg to make it 4-2.

Carolina cut the lead to one goal with three seconds left in the game, as Justin Faulk blasted a shot from the top of the right circle past Detroit goalie Petr Mrazek while on the power play.

After a scoreless first period in which the Red Wings were outshot 18-2, Zetterberg got the Red Wings on the board with 8:27 left in the middle frame on just their sixth shot. Zetterberg cut in front of the net from the left of Ward and put a shot past him to make it 1-0.

The Hurricanes responded with 4:48 left in the period when Victor Rask banged home the rebound of a Noah Hanafin shot.

Nathan Gerbe tipped a Ryan Murphy shot past Mrazek from the edge of the crease with 57 seconds left in the period to make it 2-1.

Mrazek finished the night with 44 saves on 47 shots. Ward stopped 15 of 19.

The Hurricanes had six power play tries and scored once. Detroit had one chance with the extra attacker.

The Red Wings are now off until Tuesday when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Pregame: Red Wings @ Hurricanes – 10/10

Coming off their 4-0 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on opening night in Detroit, the Red Wings are right back at it tonight with their first road game, visiting the Carolina Hurricanes.

Despite being the second game in as many nights, the Red Wings won’t be changing up any of their skaters. The only lineup change from the Toronto game will be Petr Mrazek getting the start in goal while Jimmy Howard backs him up.

Stupid stat of the day: Dylan Larkin became the first teenager in over three decades to score in his NHL debut for Detroit last night. The last time that happened (Steve Yzerman), the Red Wings lost their next game. Additionally, Yzerman scored his first goal against a team wearing blue and the next game was against a team wearing red.

Game time is 7:00 PM on FSD.