Franzen Scores as Red Wings Sweep Blue Jackets

Johan Franzen scored in the game’s final minute Thursday night, lifting the Detroit Red Wings to a 6-5 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets and finishing off a four-game sweep of their Western Conference Quarterfinal matchup.

Franzen’s goal came on a late power play after the Blue Jackets were called for too many men on the ice. Jiri Hudler pushed to the front of the net from the left side and Franzen followed him up, banging in a rebound with 47 seconds remaining.

The goal put Detroit back in front after they gave up a two-goal lead for the second time in the game.

The Red Wings led 3-1 after the first twenty minutes of the game, taking the lead on goals by Nicklas Lidstrom, Tomas Holmstrom and Dan Cleary while Kristian Huselius scored for Columbus.

The Blue Jackets scored four times in the second period, rallying twice when their season seemed over.

Rick Nash tipped in a goal at 1:44 of the middle frame and R.J. Umberger added another at 5:38 to tie things up.

Marian Hossa scored two consecutive goals to put Detroit back in the lead but Kris Russell and Fredrik Modin countered.

It was the first game of the series in which the Blue Jackets scored more than one goal.

Columbus netminder Steve Mason stopped 35 of 41 shots against while Detroit goalie Chris Osgood made 27 saves on 32 shots.

The Red Wings will now wait to see the outcome of the series between the San Jose Sharks and the Anaheim Ducks to know who they will face in the next round. The Wings will face the Ducks if Anaheim wins or the Vancouver Canucks if San Jose does.

Detroit was without Kris Draper for the fourth-straight playoff game.

Red Wings Beat Flames for Second-straight Win

Backup goaltender Chris Osgood earned his first win of the season and the Detroit Red Wings picked up their second victory in a row Wednesday night, defeating the Calgary Flames 4-2.

The win came in Osgood’s first start of the campaign. He stopped 19 of Calgary’s 21 shots in the effort.

The Red Wings got on the board first for the third consecutive game, scoring on the power play at 8:08 of the opening period.

Calgary goalie Miikka Kiprusoff attempted a long pass that was picked off by Pavel Datsyuk. Datsyuk broke in on the net, drawing Kiprusoff to him before passing off to Henrik Zetterberg to slam the puck into the open side of the net.

Kristian Huselius evened things up with 6:39 remaining in the first, breaking in on a two-on-one before faking out Osgood and putting a shot behind him.

Tomas Holmstrom put Detroit back in the lead at 3:01 of the second period. Datsyuk carried into the Calgary end before sending a centering pass out to Holmstrom. A failed interception attempt put it right on Holmstrom’s stick and he shoveled it in under Kiprusoff.

Huselius pulled the Flames back into a tie just 3:24 later, picking off a Niklas Kronwall pass and skating in on Osgood, banking a shot off of the goalie and in.

Kris Draper‘s late second-period goal would put the Red Wings in front for good.

With a delayed penalty coming to the Flames, the Red Wings put a flurry of shots on the Calgary net. A rebound came out to Andreas Lilja at the blue line and he fired a shot that Draper deflected around Kiprusoff with 3:01 left in the period.

Mikael Samuelsson added an insurance marker on a power play with 4:24 remaining in regulation, firing a shot from the top of the left circle that may have been deflected in the low slot.

Kiprusoff finished the night with 24 saves.

The Red Wings went two-for-three on the power play and scored an additional goal while skating six-on-five. The Flames were held off the scoresheet on two chances with the extra attacker.

Detroit will be back in action on Friday night when they host the Chicago Blackhawks in the finale of their three-game homestand.

Red Wings Take 2-0 Series Lead over Flames

The Detroit Red Wings jumped out to an early lead in game two of their first-round playoff matchup with the Calgary Flames and rode that lead to a 3-1 victory, giving them a 2-0 lead in the series.

Pavel Datsyuk scored just 62 seconds into the first period to get the Red Wings on the board. Datsyuk stole the puck along the right wing boards in the Calgary zone and cut to the side of the slot, whipping a wrister over the shoulder of Flames’ netminder Miikka Kiprusoff.

The Flames tried to get physical with the Wings to get back in the game but it just put them in the penalty box and Detroit made them pay.

With the Red Wings on a five-on-three at 3:50 of the first, Nicklas Lidstrom put a one-timer past Kiprusoff from the top of the right circle.

The Flames wouldn’t cut into Detroit’s lead until 2:42 of the second period when a Dion Phaneuf blast from the right point deflected off of Detroit defenseman Chris Chelios and fluttered over the glove of goaltender Dominik Hasek for a power play goal. It would be their only goal of the game.

Valtteri Filppula added an insurance goal for the Red Wings at 6:05 of the third period, fighting past Kristian Huselius to get to the rebound of of a Johan Franzen shot on a rush, lifting it over Kiprusoff.

All three Detroit scorers had also scored in game one of the series.

For the second straight game, Kiprusoff kept his team in it, making 48 saves on 51 shots against. Hasek faced only 13 shots, stopping 12.

The Red Wings went 1-for-8 on the power play, scoring on one of two five-on-three chances. The Flames scored once on five chances with the extra attacker and one five-on-three.

The series shifts to Calgary for game three on Tuesday night from the Pengrowth Saddledome.

The Red Wings were without forward Todd Bertuzzi for the third-straight game… Flames defenseman Robyn Regehr left the game in the second period. He had missed game one.

Power Plays Lead Flames over Red Wings

The Calgary Flames rode two power play goals to a win over the Detroit Red Wings Tuesday night, denying Detroit a chance to pass the Nashville Predators for the top spot in the National Hockey League.

Daymond Langkow scored on Calgary’s first power play of the game to get the Flames out in front early. Just 1:47 into the first period he jumped on the rebound of a Dion Phaneuf shot all alone at the top of the crease, flipping it past Detroit netminder Dominik Hasek.

Kristian Huselius added another power play goal with 2:26 remaining in the second period. A long shot by Phaneuf bounced off the back boards as Hasek went down to try to draw an interference call on Calgary’s Jarome Iginla. The puck came over to Alex Tanguay in the left circle, who sent it across for Huselius to lift over the sprawling Hasek.

Pavel Datsyuk scored Detroit’s lone goal between the Calgary tallies, carrying the puck from the Red Wings’ blue line into the Flames’ zone and faking around Craig Conroy before wristing a quick shot past Miikka Kiprusoff.

Calgary’s two goals came on five power play chances. Detroit was held off the board on their lone chance with the Flames in the penalty box.

Hasek finished the night with 21 saves on 23 shots against. Kiprusoff stopped 30 of the 31 shots he faced.

The Red Wings will be back in action on Thursday when they host the Columbus Blue Jackets in what could be Todd Bertuzzi‘s first game in the Detroit lineup.

Johan Franzen returned to the Red Wings lineup after missing four games with an upper body injury. Darryl Bootland was a healthy scratch before being returned to the Grand Rapids Griffins after the game… Chris Chelios was given the night off.