Red Wings Rally for 4-3 Overtime Win in Nashville

The Detroit Red Wings scored four consecutive goals Saturday afternoon, turning a 3-0 deficit to the Nashville Predators into a 4-3 overtime win.

Danny Cleary deflected a Brian Rafalski shot from the point past Pekka Rinne at 2:58 of the overtime period, giving the Red Wings the win.

Jakub Kindl started Detroit’s rally at 3:28 of the second period when his shot from the left point found its way through traffic and past Rinne to get the Red Wings on the board.

Justin Abdelkader made it 3-2 just 1:21 later, deflecting a Brad Stuart shot over Rinne’s shoulder from in the slot.

Abdelkader scored again at 3:59 of the third period. Todd Bertuzzi threw the puck to the front of the net and Abdelkader broke free to poke it past Rinne, tying the game up.

The Red Wings thought they had opened the game’s scoring with 3:44 left in the first but Nicklas Lidstrom‘s power play goal was called back when Tomas Holmstrom elbowed Rinne in the mask as the puck went past them.

Ryan Suter put a shot from the high slot past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard with one minute left in the first period and the Predators on a five-on-three to give Nashville a 1-0 lead.

Just 1:42 into the second, Martin Erat added another power play goal to make it 2-0. Erat tipped a Shea Weber shot past Howard for the goal.

Sergei Kostitsyn blasted a shot past Howard to make it 3-0 just 55 seconds later. Mike Fisher‘s shot wide of the net deflected off the back boards to Kostitsyn, who put it in before Howard could get in position.

Howard stopped 31 of the 34 shots he faced, including making a post-to-post save on Joel Ward midway through the third period to preserve the 3-3 tie. Rinne stopped 37 of 41 Detroit chances.

The Red Wings finished the afternoon scoreless on three power play opportunities while Nashville went two-for-eight, including one-for-three on five-on-threes.

Detroit is next in action on Sunday hosting the Minnesota Wild.


The Red Wings clinched their twentieth consecutive playoff berth with the win.

Red Wings – Predators Postgame Notes

Back from watching the Plymouth Whalers drop a 2-0 decision to the Kitchener Rangers in Game Six of their playoff series, I’ll finally post my thoughts on the Red Wings’ 4-3 OT win today in Nashville…

Holmstrom’s Goalie Interference
Replay showed that Tomas Holmstrom did appear to elbow Pekka Rinne in the head, so this was the right call. Call me cynical, but it still doesn’t sit right with me.

First off, it took a slow-mo replay from above the crease to show what happened on TV. Did the eagle-eyed ref actually see it happen or did he call a phantom penalty and luck out that one was actually there. If he did see it, did he miss Rinne’s punch to the back of Holmstrom’s head a second earlier?

Right call but frustrating.

Abdelkader in General
What an afternoon for Justin Abdelkader. I admit to a bit of a hometown bias towards him but that doesn’t have to apply this time. Five hits, two goals… He was all over the place. And his hit on Martin Erat was *not* boarding. Erat got away with worse against Abdelkader two weeks ago – not that what Erat did was legal then, just allowed. Hooray for consistency.

Bertuzzi vs. O’Brien
Where did Todd Bertuzzi come from? Something set him off today, I’m not sure I want to see that every game but today it was nice. Bertuzzi smacked Shane O’Brien around once and O’Brien went for the ill-timed rematch and got beat down again. That second fight was a major turning point. I can’t believe O’Brien did that when a win for him would mean nothing but a win for Bertuzzi would fire the Red Wings up.

Overall
Great physical effort from the Wings. Great mental resilience after going down 3-0. It was a playoff-style win and they need some of those down the stretch here.

Bonus Hockey
The Whalers had a chance to finish off the Rangers tonight and failed pretty miserably. Like I have the tendency to complain about with the Wings, the Whalers were just not getting any second chances around the Kitchener net. It was a pretty physical game, with the Rangers seeming to win most of those battles. Whalers need to get it together to avoid losing a series they were up 3-1 in.