Red Wings Send Green to Oilers

The Detroit Red Wings made their first move of the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline with about 14 hours before the deadline itself, sending Mike Green to the Edmonton Oilers for a fourth-round draft pick.

Forward Kyle Brodziak also comes to Detroit, but that part of the transaction is purely paper as Brodziak has been on LTIR all season and will not play for the Red Wings, with his contract expiring this summer.

Per Max Bultman of The Athletic, the fourth-round pick in 2020 becomes a third-round pick in 2021 if the Oilers make the Western Conference Finals with Green playing in at least half of Edmonton’s playoff games in the first two rounds.

The Red Wings will retain 50% of Green’s salary for the remainder of the season.

I think a fourth-round pick was the best the Wings could have expected in return for Green.  Retaining salary is not a problem as the Red Wings have the cap space to accommodate it but I really wish that retaining salary had been enough to get the pick up to a third-rounder.  I don’t think the Oilers will make the Conference Finals so I don’t see the conditions kicking in to do that.

As I wrote just moments ago, it’s disappointing that Green, thought to be able to bring Detroit a first-round pick two years ago, is now only worth a fourth-rounder.  That said, I’m glad they were able to move him at all.

Pulkkinen Scores in OT to Lift Red Wings over Blues

Detroit forward Teemu Pulkkinen scored with just 18.8 seconds remaining in overtime to give the Red Wings a 4-3 win over the host St. Louis Blues on Saturday night.

Pulkkinen scored on a blast past St. Louis netminder Jake Allen from the top of the right faceoff circle with Detroit on a power play.

The Blues forced overtime on a goal with 2:10 left in regulation. Henrik Zetterberg failed to get the puck deep on a dump-in and the Red Wings were caught on a line change, with Vladimir Tarasenko breaking down the right wing. Tarasenko cut to the front of the net and snapped a shot past Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard.

Pavel Datsyuk‘s first goal of the season opened the scoring with 9:56 left in the first period. Brad Richards sent a pass from behind the goal to Datsyuk out front to put past Allen for the 1-0 lead.

Just over three minutes later, Kyle Brodziak snapped a shot from the right wing past Howard to tie things up. Jori Lehtera put the Blues in front 1:40 after that, tipping a Jay Bouwmeester shot past Howard for a 2-1 lead.

Luke Glendening fought off a check to even things up before the end of the period, banging a chance past Allen from the slot with 1:29 left.

At 8:42 of the second, Dylan Larkin restored Detroit’s lead when a Zetterberg shot deflected off his arm and in to make it 3-2.

Howard finished the night with 30 saves on 33 shots while Allen stopped 28 of 32 chances against.

Each team had two power play opportunities with Pulkkinen’s goal the only one scored with the man-advantage.

The Red Wings are now off until Wednesday when they host the Boston Bruins.

TGTW: Wings Drop Three Consecutive Games in Week Six

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.

Three consecutive losses dropped the Detroit Red Wings out of a tie for first place in the National Hockey League in the season’s sixth week but the team remains in a tie with the Los Angeles Kings atop the Western Conference.

The Red Wings dropped their first overtime game of the season on Tuesday when they hosted the Dallas Stars.  Dallas’ Vern Fiddler opened the game’s scoring at 9:27 of the first but Johan Franzen responded for the Wings with 49 seconds left in the period to even things up.  Pavel Datsyuk made it 2-1 in Detroit’s favor at 1:51 of the second, a score that would hold until Michael Ryder made it a 2-2 tie with 7:38 left in regulation.  At 1:34 of the overtime period, Eric Nystrom gave Dallas the win.

Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard allowed the three goals on just 19 shots while Dallas netminder Kari Lehtonen made 19 saves on 21 shots.  The lone bright spot for the Red Wings was the return of Todd Bertuzzi to the lineup after missing two games with concussion-like symptoms.

The Wings’ skid continued on Thursday with a 5-3 loss to the visiting New Jersey Devils, fueled by three quick goals in the middle of the third period.  Datsyuk got the Red Wings out to a quick start, scoring just a minute into the game and adding another at 9:38 of the first on a power play.  Ilya Kovalchuk got the Devils on the board at 3:21 of the second and Dainius tied things up with a power play goal at 6:14 of the third.  Jordin Tootoo‘s first as a Red Wing put Detroit back out in front at 8:05 but Tim Sestito re-tied it 23 seconds later.  Adam Larsson gave the Devils their first lead with 9:32 remaining and Zubrus extended after only three seconds, chasing Howard from the crease in favor of Jonas Gustavsson.

Gustavsson stopped the three shots he saw in the final 9:29 of play after Howard made 24 saves on 29 shots.  New Jersey’s Martin Brodeur stopped 29 of the 32 shots he faced.

A six-round shootout loss in Minnesota closed out the week for the Red Wings.  Cal Clutterbuck got the Wild out to an early lead at 1:04 of the first before Darren Helm responded with his first of the season at 6:46.  Valtteri Filppula put the Red Wings out front at 6:58 of the second with a power play goal and Jakub Kindl extended the lead 53 seconds later.  With 8:35 left in the third, Jared Spurgeon cut Detroit’s lead to a goal.  Just eight seconds later, Kyle Brodziak tied things up.

Franzen and Brodziak scored to open the shootout.  Datsyuk was stopped and Devin Setoguchi scored in the second round but Henrik Zetteberg scored and Howard stopped Pierre-Marc Bouchard to keep the Wings alive.  Mikael Samuelsson, Matt Cullen, Bertuzzi, Steven Kampfer and Drew Miller would all fail to score before Ryan Suter beat Howard to give the Wild the win.

Howard finished the night with 24 saves on 27 shots.  Niklas Backstrom made 29 saves on 32 chances.

After six weeks of play, Filppula remains the team’s leading scorer with 26 points, five more than Datsyuk and good for second in the NHL, one behind Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin.  Datsyuk sits fourth in the league in scoring.  Howard’s 2.09 GAA puts him at fifth in the league.

The next week will see the Wings host the Penguins and Blues before visiting the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning.

Red Wings Suvive Wild Comeback, Win in Shootout

The Detroit Red Wings survived a late two-goal comeback by Minnesota and the longest shootout in team history Thursday night, earning a 4-3 win over the Wild.

Drew Miller won the game for Detroit in the eighth round of the shootout, snapping a shot over Niklas Backstrom‘s shoulder.

Miller had scored what seemed to be an insurance goal at 9:03 of the third period, deflecting a Derek Meech shot from the blue line past Backstrom to give the Red Wings a 3-1 lead.

Minnesota battled back with a pair of goals one minute apart.

With 6:12 remaining in regulation, Detroit netminder Jimmy Howard got his toe on a Kyle Brodziak chance from in front. The puck then deflected off of Martin Havlat‘s skate and trickled into the net.

The game was tied when Andrew Brunette gloved the puck out of mid-air, dropped it to his stick, and swatted it past Howard from the slot with 5:12 left.

All three of Minnesota’s goals came on fortunate bounces, as they got on the board with 7:26 left in the second when a Shane Hnidy shot went high, deflected off the glass behind the goal, then floated back out in front before hitting the chest of Robert Earl and dropping into the net.

The Red Wings had opened the scoring at 7:52 of the first when Todd Bertuzzi beat Wild goaltender Josh Harding.

Harding left the game with a lower body injury after the first period and Backstrom allowed his first goal against at 2:28 of the third when Patrick Eaves banged in a rebound chance after Darren Helm drove the net.

Howard finished the night with 27 saves on 30 Minnesota shots, stopping six of eight shootout attempts. Harding stopped ten of the 11 first-period shots he faced while Backstrom made 16 stops on 18 shots and went five-for-eight in the shootout.

Neither team scored a power play goal. Detroit had three chances with the extra attacker and Minnesota had one.