Quincey’s Fluke Goal Not Enough as Kings Rally Past Red Wings

Red Wings defenseman Kyle Quincey scored in his return from injury on Wednesday night but it wasn’t enough for Detroit, as the Los Angeles Kings rallied in the third period for a 2-1 win.

Quincey had missed two games with an ankle injury before returning – along with Brendan Smith – to the Detroit blue line. Johan Franzen also returned from injury but the team lost Valtteri Filppula.

Quincey’s goal, scored at 9:42 of the first period, came on an improbable play. With the puck being cleared around the left wing boards, Quincey pinched in and threw it at Kings netminder Jonathan Bernier. Bernier knocked it high into the air with his glove, then lost track of it as it came down, bounced off his own back, and into the net.

It stood for over forty minutes as the game’s only goal, through a second-period stretch that saw the Red Wings kill off a four-minute LA power play, of which a full two minutes was a two-man advantage.

The Kings finally got on the board during another five-on-three. With 9:34 remaining in regulation, Jeff Carter tipped an intentionally-wide shot by Mike Richards past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard to tie the game, 1-1.

With 4:48 left the Kings took the lead. D.J. King dug the puck out from along the right wing boards and sent it to Anze Kopitar all alone in front of Howard, where he had time to slide the puck around him to make it 2-1.

Detroit would be unable to even things back up.

Howard finished the night with 27 saves on 29 shots. Bernier stopped 32 of the 33 chances he faced.

Carter’s goal was the only power play goal of the night. Detroit had three tries with the extra attacker while Los Angeles had five, including 2:46 of five-on-three time.

The Red Wings will be back in action Thursday night in San Jose.

With Quincey and Smith returning from injury, Kent Huskins and Ian White were the healthy scratches on defense for Detroit.

Ericsson’s Late Goal Lifts Red Wings over Kings

Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson scored with just 4.5 seconds remaining on Sunday afternoon, giving the Red Wings a 3-2 victory over the Los Angeles Kings in a game that looked like it was heading to overtime.

Ericsson’s blast from above the top of the right faceoff circle found its way through traffic and squeaked between the pads of Kings netminder Jonathan Quick before sliding across the goal line.

Los Angeles’ Alec Martinez had seemingly forced overtime with 53 seconds remaining when he came out of the corner and knocked the loose rebound of a Kyle Clifford chance past Jimmy Howard to make it 2-2.

Howard kept the Wings in the game after they took a 2-1 lead out of the first period, making 45 saves on 47 shots in earning the win. In the scoreless second period alone, Howard stopped 23 shots. Quick, meanwhile, made 28 saves on 31 shots.

Pavel Datsyuk‘s power play goal at 5:44 of the first period opened the game’s scoring. Datsyuk took a pass from Henrik Zetterberg at the LA blue line and split the defense, racing in on Quick and lifting a shot into the top of the net.

Damien Brunner made it 2-0 with 2:32 left in the period off a pass from Zetterberg. Zetterberg gained the Kings zone and drew three defenders to him in the high slot before passing off to Brunner for a snapper from the right circle past Quick.

The Kings got on the board with just 41 seconds left in the first when Anze Kopitar banged home the rebound of a Rob Scuderi shot.

The Red Wings continued their special teams improvement from Saturday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers, holding the Kings off the scoreboard on three power play tries while scoring on one of their four attempts with the man-advantage.

Detroit is now off until Wednesday when they host the St. Louis Blues.

TGTW: Wings Remain Atop Central Eleven Weeks In

The Games That Weren’t is one of many projects simulating the games lost by the NHL lockout. In the absence of actual games to write about, I’ll be checking in periodically on the fictional Red Wings’ season.

The Detroit Red Wings remain atop the Central Division after the eleventh week of play in the 2012-13 NHL season, but the Nashville Predators have moved into a tie with them, having played one more game. The Predators went 3-0 in a week that saw the Red Wings go 2-1, making up two points lost last week.

The Red Wings opened their week with a 3-2 win over the league-leading Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday. Todd Bertuzzi scored at 3:57 of the first to get Detroit out to an early lead and Henrik Zetterberg made it 2-0 just 32 seconds later. Darren Helm extended the lead to three goals at 1:03 of the second. Simon Gagne got the Kings on the board with 8:55 left in the middle frame and Anze Kopitar pulled LA to within one with 7:08 left in regulation but Jimmy Howard held on for the win, stopping 26 of 28 shots on the night and ten of 11 in the third.

The New York Islanders continued their run of wins over the Red Wings on Thursday, as Detroit dropped a 6-3 decision. Valtteri Filppula scored the only goal of the first period at 4:17 but the Islanders would score the next five goals. Frans Nielsen tied the game up at 2:15 of the second and Brad Boyes put the Islanders in front with 7:14 left in the period. Kyle Okposo’s power play goal 1:49 later made it 3-1. Josh Bailey made it 4-1 at 8:04 of the third period and Nielsen’s second of the night with 7:00 remaining chased Howard from the Detroit net. Jordin Tootoo and Mikael Samuelsson scored 1:04 apart to make it 5-3 but Matt Moulson closed out the scoring with 2:38 remaining. Howard made 19 saves on 24 shots in his abbreviated night, with Jonas Gustavsson stopping two of three shots he faced.

The Red Wings appeared to be heading to another loss on Saturday but rallied for a 4-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Drew Miller opened the scoring with a power play goal with 50 seconds left in the first period. Derick Brassard scored at 8:52 and 9:01 of the second to put the Jackets in front and Cam Atkinson made it 3-1 with 6:48 remaining in the middle period. It looked like the Wings would be down a pair heading into the second intermission, but Jonathan Ericsson scored with 49 seconds remaining and again with 31 seconds left to tie things back up. Todd Bertuzzi’s power play goal at 3:15 of the third would be the difference-maker as the Wings went on to win. Howard made 23 saves on 26 shots in the effort.

After eleven weeks of play, Valtteri Filppula leads the Wings in scoring with 40 points, six back of the league-leading Kopitar. Howard’s 19 wins leave him tied for second in the NHL and his five shutouts are tied for first in the league.

The Red Wings hold the Central Division’s top spot by virtue of a game in hand on Nashville, who also has 40 points. The St. Louis Blues sit two points back with a game in hand on Detroit.

The coming week will see the Red Wings play three games on the road after the Christmas break. On Wednesday they’ll visit the Carolina Hurricanes before moving on to see the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday and the Ottawa Senators on Sunday.

TGTW: Wings Snap Skid, Remain Atop Central

The Games That Weren’t is one of many projects simulating the games lost by the NHL lockout. In the absence of actual games to write about, I’ll be checking in periodically on the fictional Red Wings’ season.

The Detroit Red Wings ended their seven-game losing streak this week, keeping pace with the Nashville Predators in a tie atop the Central Division.

The Wings’ skid ended on Tuesday with a 2-1 win over the visiting Phoenix Coyotes. Phoenix got on the board first with a David Moss goal just 1:05 in but Valtteri Filppula evened things up at 8:57. Todd Bertuzzi scored the go-ahead goal with 4:28 left in the second as Jimmy Howard stopped 28 of 29 shots to get the win.

The defending Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings made sure Detroit didn’t make it a winning streak, with a 6-2 win over the Wings. Jeff Carter opened the scoring at 5:23 of the first. Danny Cleary tied it up at 7:17 but Dustin Brown put the Kings ahead again just ten seconds later. Only 39 seconds after that, Jarret Stoll scored his first of the year to make it 3-1. Anze Kopitar made it 4-1 with 4:55 let in the opening period. Stoll and Carter each scored second-period goals and Justin Abdelkader closed out the scoring in the third. Howard made 11 saves on 16 shots against before being pulled after Stoll’s second goal. Jonas Gustavsson stopped nine of ten shots in 33:37 of play.

Howard rebounded to blank the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night. Henrik Zetterberg‘s shorthanded goal with 3:07 left in the second period got the Wings’ on the board and Johan Franzen added an insurance marker with 5:09 left in the third. Howard stopped all 25 shots he faced.

After eight weeks, Detroit is tied with Nashville atop the Central at 26 points, with both teams having played 24 games. The St. Louis Blues are two points back with three games in hand.

Team-leading scorer Filppula sits third in the league in scoring with 30 points, behind Kopitar (34) and Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin (32). Filppula and Pavel Datsyuk are tied for fourth in the league with 19 assists.

Jimmy Howard is no longer on the leaderboard for goals-against average or save percentage but his four shutouts are tied for the league lead.

The coming week will see Detroit’s homestand continue with games against the Colorado Avalanche and Washington Capitals.

TGTW: Wings’ Skid Reaches Seven Games

The Games That Weren’t is one of many projects simulating the games lost by the NHL lockout. In the absence of actual games to write about, I’ll be checking in periodically on the fictional Red Wings’ season.

Two weeks after sitting in a tie for the top spot in the National Hockey League, the Detroit Red Wings have dropped seven consecutive games and are eight points back of the Carolina Hurricanes for the league lead. The Los Angeles Kings are six points up on the Red Wings in the Western Conference. Detroit remains tied with the Nashville Predators atop the Central Division, with the Columbus Blue Jackets one point back and the St. Louis Blues two points back, each with three games in hand.

The Wings’ abysmal seventh week of the season began with a 3-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday. Deryk Engelland, Matt Cooke and Chris Kunitz each scored for the Penguins before the Red Wings got on the board with a third-period Johan Franzen goal. Jimmy Howard made 24 saves on 27 shots in taking the loss. Detroit lost forward Pavel Datsyuk to a knee injury in the first period after taking a charge from Brandon Sutter, who was ejected on the play.

With Datsyuk out on Wednesday, the Wings dropped a 3-1 decision to the St. Louis Blues. Patrik Berglund and T.J. Oshie scored in the game’s first 5:43 before Kyle Quincey got the Red Wings on the board with 6:24 left in the second. Kevin Shattenkirk re-extended the Blues’ lead with 2:47 left in the period to round out the game’s scoring. Howard stopped 23 of 26 shots on the night.

Datsyuk returned to the lineup as the Red Wings visited the Florida Panthers on Friday night but his return couldn’t prevent a rout, with an explosive second period propelling the Panthers to an 8-2 win. Jack Skille and Valtteri Filppula traded first period goals to keep the game even after a period but former Detroit prospects Shawn Matthias and Tomas Fleischmann scored three goals in the first 6:16 of the second to put the Wings out of it. Marcel Goc scored just past the game’s halfway point to chase Howard from the net, then Jonas Gustavsson allowed goals by Peter Mueller and Matthias just 18 seconds apart to make it 7-1. Mikael Samuelsson got the Wings’ a second goal late in the second and Fleischmann wrapped up the hat trick late in the third to round out the scoring.

Howard stopped only six of 11 shots in 30:09 of play while Gustavsson stopped eight of 11 in 29:51.

Howard didn’t fare much better on Saturday in Tampa, where the Red Wings took a 4-2 lead into the third period only to lose, 6-4. Filppula gave the Wings’ the lead just 3:41 into the game but Vincent Lecavalier tied things up 34 seconds into the second. Darren Helm and Franzen put Detroit up by a pair with goals at 5:45 and 7:23. Ryan Malone pulled the Lightning back to within one with 2:56 left in the middle period but Drew Miller‘s first of the season made it 4-2 with 58 seconds left.

Malone’s second of the night cut the lead again at 4:13 of the third and J.T. Wyman tied things up on the power play at 9:00. Teddy Purcell chased Howard from the net just 59 seconds later with another power play goal and Lecavalier rounded out the scoring with a third power play tally with 4:48 remaining.

Howard faced 22 shots and made 17 saves in 49:59 while Gustavsson stopped three of four shots in 10:01. Captain Henrik Zetterberg was lost to a shoulder injury in the first period and did not return to play.

After the disastrous seventh week, Howard has fallen off the NHL leaderboard in all goaltending categories. Filppula remains one of the league leaders in scoring, with his 28 points putting him behind only Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin (31). Despite missing time to injury, Datsyuk sits fourth with 25 points, with Los Angeles’ Anze Kopitar (27) in third. The pair lead the league in assists with 18 each, tied with Carolina’s Eric Staal.

The next week will see the Red Wings return from their Florida trip to host a trio of Pacific Division teams in the Phoenix Coyotes, Los Angeles Kings, and San Jose Sharks.

Red Wings Drop Third-straight at Home in 2-1 Loss to Kings

The Detroit Red Wings’ woes at Joe Louis Arena continued on Wednesday as they lost their third consecutive home game, a 2-1 decision to the Los Angeles Kings.

With the loss, the Red Wings dropped to 17-11-4 at home this season while carrying a 22-9-4 road record.

The Kings used a two-goal second period to beat Detroit.

At 7:50 of the period, Anze Kopitar drove to the net and banged home the rebound of a Dustin Penner shot after goalie Jimmy Howard couldn’t corral the puck.

With 5:17 remaining, Dustin Brown tipped a Alec Martinez shot past Howard on a power play. The shot was also tipped by Alexei Ponikarovsky en route to the net.

The Red Wings were unhappy with the second goal as it came just moments after Michael Handzus cut Nicklas Lidstrom with an inadvertant high stick. No penalty was called on the play.

Detroit’s lone goal came 5:57 into the first period, when a Darren Helm slap shot from the right faceoff circle squeaked through goaltender Jonathan Quick‘s pads.

Quick finished the night with 28 saves on 29 shots. Howard stopped 24 of the 26 chances he faced.

Los Angeles went one-for-three on the power play while the Red Wings did not score on two power play tries.

Detroit is back in action on Friday when they host the Edmonton Oilers.

Red Wings Close Road Trip with OT Loss to Kings

The Detroit Red Wings wrapped up their three-game California road trip with a 3-2 overtime loss to the Los Angeles Kings Saturday night. The Red Wings took five of a possible six points while on the West Coast.

The loss spoiled the return of goaltender Chris Osgood, making his first start after missing a month with a groin injury. Osgood made 22 saves on 25 shots on the night.

Detroit took a 1-0 lead with 4:31 left in the first period when Jonathan Ericsson pinched in to slap the rebound of a Pavel Datsyuk shot over diving LA goalie Jonathan Quick.

The Kings tied things back up 24 seconds into the second period, when Justin Williams tipped a Rob Scuderi shot in the slot to beat Osgood.

Todd Bertuzzi restored the Detroit lead just 48 seconds later with a goal similar to Ericsson’s, pinching in from the point to put a rebound into the top of the net.

Like Detroit, Los Angeles’ second goal mirrored their first. Alec Martinez fired from the point and the puck deflected off of Darren Helm, pulling the Kings back into a tie at 7:18 of the second.

Anze Kopitar won it for the Kings in overtime. On a three-on-two with Dustin Brown and Martinez, Kopitar slowed up to get open at the top of the right circle for a one-timer past Osgood with 56 seconds remaining.

Neither team scored a power play goal on the night, each having two tries with the extra attacker.

Quick made 27 saves on 29 Detroit chances.

The Red Wings now return home for a three-game homestand, starting Monday against the San Jose Sharks.

Kris Draper made his first appearance of the season, having missed the first 23 games after surgery for a sports hernia. He was -1 in 5:14 of play.

Red Wings Blow Two-goal Lead, Fall to Kings, 3-2

The Detroit Red Wings had a two-goal lead less than halfway through the first period Saturday night but couldn’t hold onto it, dropping a 3-2 decision to the Los Angeles Kings.

Valtteri Filppula walked in untouched on Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Quick, beating him with a wrist shot from the left faceoff circle at 5:29 of the first to open the scoring.

Just 2:02 later, a Brian Rafalski shot bounced off Todd Bertuzzi‘s knee and went past Quick on a five-on-three to put the Red Wings up by a pair.

The rest of the game would be all Los Angeles, however.

Anze Kopitar beat Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard on a rebound chance after a turnover by Jonathan Ericsson only 1:55 into the second period.

Peter Harrold tied it up at 6:27 of the third, then Brad Richardson put the Kings in front with 7:57 remaining, tipping in a chance from the slot.

The loss leaves the Red Wings three points behind the Kings in the standings and drops them back out of a playoff spot.

Howard made 30 saves on the night, facing 33 Kings chances. Quick stopped 31 of 33 Detroit shots.

The Red Wings went 1-for-3 on the power play while the Kings were scoreless in the same number of chances with the extra attacker.

Three fans made their way into the Joe Louis Arena rafters over section 124 at the start of the third period. The section was evactuated while security handled the situation.

Kings End Red Wings’ Streak at Eight

The Detroit Red Wings’ winning streak ended at eight games Thursday night, with the Los Angeles Kings scoring four goals in the third period to rally for a 5-3 win. The loss prevented the Red Wings from tying a franchise record with a nine-game winning streak.

Patrick O’Sullivan, Alexander Frolov, Brad Stuart and Anze Kopitar were the goal-scorers in the final frame as the Kings rallied from down 3-1.

O’Sullivan scored just 39 seconds into the period to begin the comeback. A shot by Stuart was knocked aside by goaltender Chris Osgood but the rebound bounced over the stick of Pavel Datsyuk to O’Sullivan in the slot for a one-timer back into the top-corner.

Frolov’s power play goal at 6:15 evened the game up. Former Red Wing Kyle Calder sent a pass from the bottom of the right circle across to Frolov in the left circle for a one-timer past Osgood.

With 6:53 left in regulation, Stuart’s power play blast from the blue line slipped through a screen and put the Kings up by a goal.

Kopitar iced the game 1:32 later when Stuart’s shot from the point was deflected straight to him in the slot for a backhander past Osgood.

The Red Wings had opened the scoring early, getting on the board just 49 seconds into the game when a Mikael Samuelsson shot slipped under Jason Labarbera‘s pad and Tomas Kopecky jumped in to knock it into the net.

Calder evened the game up with 9:43 left in the first, poking the puck past Osgood from the side of the net after the Detroit goalie thought it was covered up.

Henrik Zetterberg scored twice to build Detroit’s 3-1 lead.

With 1:09 left in the first, Zetterberg broke down the left wing and put a high shot short side on net. It slipped under Labarbera’s arm and into the goal to put Detroit back in the lead.

With 6:55 left in the second, he added another on a wraparound attempt.

The Red Wings finished the night without a goal on three power play chances while the Kings scored on two of their five chances with the extra skater.

Osgood stopped 20 of 25 Los Angeles shots in net for Detroit. Labarbera made 26 saves on 29 shots.

Osgood Joins All-Star Roster

Detroit Red Wings netminder Chris Osgood will join three teammates and his coach in Atlanta for this year’s NHL All-Star Game, the league announced today.

With the starting lineup already determined by fan voting, the rest of the Western Conference team’s roster was announced Thursday. Osgood was named to the team, joining starters Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, and Nicklas Lidstrom.

The quartet of Red Wings will be coached by a familiar face, Detroit head coach Mike Babcock.

With Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo declining his starting spot in net for the Western Conference team, three reserve goalies were selected. Osgood will split time between the pipes with San Jose’s Evgeni Nabokov and former Red Wing Manny Legace of the St. Louis Blues.

Ed Jovanovski (Phoenix), Duncan Keith (Chicago), Chris Pronger (Anaheim) and Sergei Zubov (Dallas) joined the team on defense.

The forward reserves are Jason Arnott (Nashville), Marian Gaborik (Minnesota), Ryan Getzlaf (Anaheim), Shawn Horcoff (Edmonton), Anze Kopitar (Los Angeles), Rick Nash (Columbus), Henrik Sedin (Vancouver), Paul Stastny (Colorado) and Joe Thornton (San Jose).

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