Postgame Notes: Red Wings @ Rangers – 10/19

Alright, I’m going to make this one quick because, admittedly, I was mostly watching this out of the corner of my eye with the volume down low.

You know when the Red Wings were a powerhouse and they’d come up against some random horrible team who, for some reason, they just couldn’t beat?  Those games against Nashville (usually in Nashville), 1999ish, where they doubled up the Preds in shots and controlled play and just couldn’t solve frikkin’ Mike Dunham, while some random like Mark Mowers (future Red Wing) would score goals on multiple deflections and Detroit would lose, 2-1?

That’s what happened tonight.

By all accounts, the Red Wings had no right to win this game.  The Rangers controlled play for the most part.  But Jimmy Howard – in his first start of the season and playing in his favorite arena – stood on his head and the Wings managed to get another power play goal out of Thomas Vanek and a goal from their fourth line and it was enough.

It wasn’t a good game but a win is a win.

Wings Close Regular Season with Loss to Preds

The Detroit Red Wings, having already clinched the NHL’s best regular season record, ended their schedule on a low note Tuesday, dropping a 6-3 decision to the Nashville Predators.

Four goals in the second period helped propel the Predators to the victory.

Detroit had opened the scoring when Kris Draper scored off a Mark Mowers rebound with 6:19 remaining in the first period but Nashville scored the next six goals.

Early in the second period, after an apparent power play goal by Paul Kariya was called back, the Predators went on the first of a series of five-on-three power plays that led to two goals.

Kariya scored at 4:29 to put the Predators on the board, rifling a one-timer off of Detroit goalie Chris Osgood‘s glove and into the net.

Just 21 seconds later, Martin Erat deflected a shot by Shea Weber to give Nashville the lead.

At 9:45, Kariya scored his second of the night on a two-on-one rush, getting a pass from David Legwand. With 3:57 remaining in the period, their roles were reversed as Legwand scored the Predators’ fourth goal.

Kariya completed his hat trick on another odd-man rush at 1:40 of the third period and Mike Sillinger added another goal 1:31 later.

With 5:07 remaining in the final period, Mikael Samuelsson deflected a shot by Mathieu Schneider for a Detroit power play goal.

Detroit finished the game’s scoring with 2:10 remaining when a Jason Williams shot deflected off a Nashville defenseman and past goalie Chris Mason for another power play goal.

Both teams finished the night two-for-seven on the power play.

Osgood stopped 24 of the 30 shots he faced in net for Detroit while Mason made 30 saves on 33 shots for Nashville.

The Red Wings will return to the ice on Friday night when they host the Edmonton Oilers in the first game of the 2006 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Shorthanded Wings Set NHL Record with Eleventh Consecutive Road Win

The Detroit Red Wings, skating with an 18-man roster rather than the usual twenty players due to injuries, set a new NHL record with their eleventh road victory of the season Thursday night, a 7-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.

The win also extended Detroit’s record for road wins in a season to thirty.

The Red Wings were without Pavel Datsyuk, Mathieu Schneider, Robert Lang, Steve Yzerman and Jason Williams. After calling up Donald MacLean earlier this week to fill in for Lang, Detroit had reached the league’s salary cap and could not call up reinforcements to replace the other injured players.

The smaller lineup didn’t stop the Wings from jumping to an early lead on goals by Brendan Shanahan and Henrik Zetterberg.

Shanahan scored his first of the night at 3:12 of the opening period. MacLean had the puck at the bottom of the left circle and sent it out front to Mark Mowers. Mowers didn’t have a shot, so he kicked it back to Shanahan who one-timed it home.

Just 21 seconds later, Zetterberg put Detroit up by two when a Nicklas Lidstrom shot from the left circle went wide of the goal. The puck bounced off the boards behind the net and came to Zetterberg at the far side of the crease for a tap-in.

Zetterberg’s second of the night gave the Red Wings a three-goal lead 3:52 later.

With the teams skating four-on-four, Zetterberg carried the puck through the Chicago zone but couldn’t get an angle on goalie Nikolai Khabibulin. Instead, he went behind the net for a wraparound attempt and reached to put a shot off Khabibulin’s skate and into the net from the other side of the goal.

The Blackhawks made a brief comeback with goals by Kyle Calder at 10:31 of the first and Radim Vrbata 46 seconds into the second.

Tomas Holmstrom and Lidstrom countered to give the Red Wings a three-goal lead again and Khabibulin was replaced by Craig Anderson for the third time this season against Detroit.

At 8:59 of the middle frame, Shanahan’s second of the night put the Wings up 6-2 when he skated through the right circle and banked a shot off Anderson’s shoulder and into the net.

In the third period, Patrick Sharp gave Chicago a shorthanded goal off of a giveaway in the Detroit zone but Shanahan finished the hat trick for the game’s last goal, banging in the rebound of a shot by Lidstrom at 7:38 with the Red Wings on the power play.

Detroit finished the night one-for-nine on the man-advantage while Chicago went one-for-six and scored twice on Detroit power plays.

Red Wings’ netminder Manny Legace made 28 saves on 31 shots while Khabibulin stopped 12 of the 17 attempts he faced and Anderson went 21-for-23.

The Red Wings’ short road trip will conclude on Saturday when they visit the St. Louis Blues.

Steve Yzerman is not with the team on this road trip… Robert Lang and Mathieu Schneider are expected to return to the lineup on Saturday… Jason Woolley left the game in the second period.

Detroit Wins Sixth-straight in Penalty-filled Matchup

The Detroit Red Wings emerged from a penalty-filled visit to the Vancouver Canucks with a 7-3 win Sunday night, exending their winning streak to six games and regaining possession of the top spot in the NHL standings.

The Canucks were penalized 15 times on the night and the resulting 11 power plays were the most given to Detroit in any game this season. The Red Wings scored on only one of their chances, while the Canucks capitalized on on both of their attempts, once on a five-on-three.

The Red Wings were penalized only six times.

Detroit opened the scoring at 6:03 of the first period, when Tomas Holmstrom scored on an odd-man rush with Mark Mowers and Henrik Zetterberg, ripping a shot from the left cirlce over goalie Alex Auld’s shoulder off a pass from Mowers.

Jason Williams put the Red Wings up by a pair just 40 seconds later. Chris Chelios caused a turnover at the Vancouver blue line as the Canucks tried to clear their zone. He got the puck to Steve Yzerman, who was on his knees at the top of the right circle. Yzerman sent a backwards, backhand pass to Williams, who cut to the net and put a backhander between Auld’s legs.

Nicklas Lidstrom extended the Detroit lead with a power play goal with 9:05 left in the period, firing a shot from the blue line past Auld as Holmstrom screened in front.

Pavel Datyuk scored Detroit’s fourth goal just 1:30 into the second period, taking a pass from Kris Draper at the Vancouver blue line to break in all alone on Auld, faking to the backhand before moving to his forehand and lifting a shot into the net.

After a Vancouver goal was mysteriously waived off because Todd Bertuzzi was in the Detroit crease, the Canucks finally got on the board with a five-on-three goal at 3:44 of the second, as Anson Carter put a rebound chance past Detroit’s Chris Osgood.

Just 1:02 later, with the Canucks still on the power play, Markus Naslund sun through the left circle and threw a shot over Osgood’s shoulder for Vancouver’s second goal.

The Red Wings regained their three-goal lead when Williams scored his second of the night with 21 seconds left in the period, but the Canucks scored with 2 seconds remaining to counter his goal, with a Matt Cooke shot deflecting off of Mathieu Schneider and into the Detroit net.

Brendan Shanahan scored Detroit’s sixth goal of the night 12 seconds into the third period, getting the puck from Datsyuk on a centering pass to him from the left wing and putting a high shot into the net.

Johan Franzen wrapped up the game’s scoring 3:30 later when his long shot evaded Auld’s glove on a shot that the Vancouver goalie could have had.

After allowing seven goals on 28 shots, Auld was replaced by Mika Noronen, who stopped all nine shots he faced. Osgood made 21 saves on 24 shots on the night.

Red Wings Hold Off Chicago Comeback for 6-4 Win

The Detroit Red Wings held off a third period comeback by the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday, riding three goals in each of the first two periods to a 6-4 win over their longtime rivals.

The game, the first in a home-and-home series on back-to-back nights, saw Detroit captain Steve Yzerman net two goals and Brendan Shanahan add three assists.

The Blackhawks opened the game’s scoring just 1:08 in, when a long shot by former Red Wing Martin Lapointe bounced off the back boards to Matthew Barnaby at the side of the net, where he was open to bang a shot over Detroit goalie Manny Legace.

Detroit evened the game at 6:25, when Chicago goalie Nikolai Khabibulin allowed a long rebound into the slot on a shot by Shanahan. Pavel Datsyuk pounced on it and put a shot over Khabibulin’s glove to get the Wings on the board.

Just 1:43 later, Yzerman’s first of the night gave the Red Wings their first lead. Robert Lang got his own rebound on a shot from Khabibulin’s right and sent a pass through the slot to Yzerman on the other side, wide open to put a shot into the gap to the Chicago goalie’s left side.

The Blackhawks tied the game with 7:57 remaining in the period, when Mikael Holmqvist banked a bad-angle shot off the side of Legace and into the net.

Detroit regained the lead 1:25 later. Henrik Zetterberg tried to split two defenders cutting through the slot but lost the puck. Mark Mowers followed him and picked up the loose puck, whipping a shot past Khabibulin.

The Red Wings extended their lead at 5:33 of the second period, just five seconds into a power play. Zetterberg won a faceoff in the Chicago zone and Pavel Datsyuk poked the puck back to Nicklas Lidstrom, who sent a pass along the blue line to Jason Williams. Williams fired from the right point and the shot was deflected right to Zetterberg for a tap-in.

Kris Draper scored 5:01 later on a rush with Datsyuk and Shanahan. Datsyuk carried the puck into the Chicago zone and held up at the top of the right circle as Draper went to the net. Datsyuk threaded a pass to Draper, who deflected it past Khabibulin.

After allowing five goals on just twenty shots, Khabibulin was pulled in favor of Craig Anderson.

With just 7.2 seconds remaining in the second and the Red Wings on a five-on-three, Steve Yzerman put Detroit up by four, picking the puck out of his skated off a rebound and lifting it over the sprawled Anderson.

Chicago goals by Patrick Sharp and Curtis Brown late in the second cut Detroit’s lead but weren’t enough to pull even.

With 6:23 remaining in the game, Sharp drove the net with the puck and slipped a shot under Legace’s pads.

Just 53 seconds later, Barnaby connected with Brown on a shorthanded goal for the final goal of the game.

Legace finished the game with 25 saves on 29 shots while Anderson made 25 saves on the 26 shots he faced in half a game of play.

Detroit went two-for-nine on the power play and stopped all three of Chicago’s power play attempts, although they did allow a shorthanded goal.

The two teams will meet again on Sunday in Chicago.

The Red Wings played the game in their white jerseys, rather than their “home reds,” and the Blackhawks wore their red sweaters.

Red Wings Fall to Coyotes in Return Home

In their first game at Joe Louis Arena since February 12, the Detroit Red Wings were defeated by the Phoenix Coyotes, 5-2.

The loss comes on the second half of a home-and-home series that saw the Detroit win the opening game in Phoenix. That night, it was Coyotes goalie Curtis Joseph that was plagued by inconsistant play; Tuesday, Red Wings netminder Manny Legace stumbled, making only 19 saves on 24 shots.

University of Michigan product Mike Comrie opened the game’s scoring at 6:50 of the first period, banging in the rebound of a Dave Scatchard redirection while crashing the net.

Just after a penalty to Detroit expired at 9:54 of the period, former Red Wing Boyd Devereaux was left all alone at the side of the crease to take a pass from Steven Reinprecht and lift a shot into the net, putting the Coyotes up by two.

Scatchard gave Phoenix a three-goal lead with 5:58 remaining in the opening period, scoring on an odd-man rush that saw him skate right up the middle untouched to take a pass and put a quick shot past Legace.

Detroit got on the board just 1:30 later, when Pavel Datsyuk banked a bad-angle shot off of Joseph and into the net while the Red Wings skated five-on-three.

The Red Wings pulled to within one at 2:53 of the second period when Kris Draper went behind the net and sent a pass out to Brendan Shanahan alone in front of the goal. Shanahan took two wacks at the puck and put it past Joseph.

At 9:05 of the final period, Comrie scored his second of the game with the Coyotes on the power play, tipping a shot from the blue line by Zbynek Michalek past Legace.

After Joseph appeared to get away with throwing his stick while making a save, the Red Wings were given a penalty shot when Mike Comrie shot a teammate’s dropped stick into the path of a pass to Nicklas Lidstrom with 5:03 remaining. Mark Mowers couldn’t convert on the chance and Detroit remained down by two.

Shane Doan put the game away with a power play goal with 4:09 remaining. Doan got the puck on the right side of the slot and lifted a shot over the sprawling Legace.

Joseph finished the game with 35 saves on 37 shots.

Detroit scored only once on six power play chances, while Phoenix scored two power play goals on seven tries.

The Red Wings return to the ice on Thurday when they host the Los Angeles Kings.

Nicklas Lidstrom picked up career assist number 600 on Datsyuk’s goal.

Red Wings Rout Coyotes, 7-3

The Detroit Red Wings faltered late in the first period but controlled the rest of their Saturday matchup with the Phoenix Coyotes, crusing to a 7-3 win in the first game of a home-and-home series.

All seven goals were scored on former Red Wings goaltender Curtis Joseph, who was replaced for the third period after making twenty saves on 27 shots. His replacement, Philippe Sauve, stopped all seven shots he faced while his former understudy, Manny Legace, finished the game with 32 saves on 35 shots.

With Mikael Samuelsson out with a sore wrist, Mark Mowers re-entered the Red Wings’ lineup and made an impact immediately, scoring the game’s first goal.

Just 59 seconds into the game, Mowers drove to the net and took a pass from Tomas Holmstrom, reaching out for a backhand deflection over Joseph and into the top of the net.

At 3:26 of the first, Detroit got a second goal on a delayed penalty. The Red Wings barely kept control of the puck before Nicklas Lidstrom poked it into the slot. Brendan Shanahan jumped up and pounded a shot past Joseph to put Detroit up by two.

The Wings extended their lead again 9:10 later, when Henrik Zetterberg scored on a three-on-one rush.

Zetterberg tried to pass to Pavel Datsyuk on the play, but the Phoenix defenseman cut off the option and the puck bounced back to Zetterberg. Joseph was already cheating to the far side, so the Swede was left with the near corner of the net open to put a shot into.

The Coyotes surged back late in the period, scoring twice with the man-advantage after a cross-checking call put Chris Chelios in the box.

With Datsyuk already serving a penalty when Chelios was called, Phoenix had a long five-on-three to capitalize on and Shane Doan did just that, one-timing a blast past Legace with 1:22 remaining in the period.

Steven Reinprecht tipped a shot by Zbynek Michalek past Legace with 50 seconds remaining in the period to pull the Coyotes within one.

Steve Yzerman started Detroit’s scoring back up with 8:31 remaining in the second period, putting in his own rebound from the slot after Robert Lang got him the puck from behind the goal.

Phoenix responded just 1:20 later on a goal by Mike Recci but the Red Wings went on to score three-straight to end the period.

With 4:50 remaining in the second, Zetterberg scored his second of the night as the Wings skated with a four-on-three advantage. Lang got the puck at the bottom of the left circle and sent it to Zetterberg, who was all alone in the slot to settle it down and rifle a shot past Joseph.

Just 15 seconds later, with Joseph improperly set to face a shot and the teams skating four-aside, Lidstrom fired a sixty-footer that slipped past the Phoenix goalie.

Shanahan’s second of the night closed the game’s scoring with 1:03 remaining in the period, when he deflected a Matheiu Schneider blast from the high slot.

Neither team scored in a third period that saw Lidstrom given a penalty shot while the Coyotes were on a five-on-three.

The Red Wings finished the night 1-for-5 on the power play. The Coyotes scored on two of their ten power play chances.

The two teams will meet again in Detroit on Tuesday for the second half of the home-and-home series.

Yzerman’s goal was his 93rd career game-winning goal.

Penalty Killers Lead Red Wings over Avalanche

The Detroit Red Wings took a 4-3 lead over the Colorado Avalanche into the third period on Saturday and their penalty killers helped them keep it through two Colorado power plays in the period, including a five-on-three chance.

Goaltender Manny Legace led the way for the Red Wings in the third, stopping all nine shots he faced including two big Avalanche chances during a flurry with the two-man power play.

The Avalanche had two chances with a two-man advantage on the game and could not score on either. Detroit’s game-winning goal came on their only five-on-three chance.

With the game tied at three and 2:58 remaining in the second period, Robert Lang scored the game’s final goal to put Detroit in the lead. With Colorado down to three men on the ice, Pavel Datsyuk was free to send a pass from down low through the crease to Lang on the other side, where he was open to bank the puck in off the skate of Colorado netminder David Aebischer.

The Red Wings had opened the game’s scoring just 49 seconds into the game. Behind the goal, Kris Draper sent the puck to Brendan Shanahan, who passed it into the slot for Datsyuk. Datsyuk quickly sent it back on net and past Aebischer to put Detroit on the board.

The Avalanche pulled back into a tie 46 seconds later, when Ian Laperriere tipped a soft shot from the point by John-Michael Liles past Legace.

Tomas Holmstrom put the Red Wings back out in front with 2:57 remaining in the period. Mark Mowers carried the puck away from the goal through the bottom of the right circle before spinning to send a pass through the crease to Holmstrom on the far side, open for an easy tip-in.

With 1:09 left in the period, Detroit took a two-goal lead on their first power play. Mathieu Schneider sent a shot on goal from the high slot through a screen. The puck deflected off Colorado blueliner Patrice Brisebois and into the net.

Colorado came back in the second period, starting with a power play goal at 1:29. Brisebois fired a shot from the point that Andrew Brunette deflected at the top of the crease to beat Legace.

With 6:37 remaining in the period and the teams skating four-on-four, Rob Blake scored to tie the game. Blake sent a shot from the point that may have deflected off of Chris Chelios and past Legace.

Lang’s game-winner came 3:39 later.

The Red Wings ended the game two-for-five on the power play and held the Avalanche to one goal on eight power play chances.

Legace made twenty saves on 23 shots while Aebischer stopped 28 of 32 shots.

The Red Wings will be back in action on Monday when they host the Nashville Predators.

Mowers was in the lineup for the second-straight game as Henrik Zetterberg rests a hip flexor. Zetterberg is expected to play on Monday… Monday’s matchup is the rescheduled November 21 game. As such, Nashville will begin the game with a 1-0 lead.

Osgood, Holmstrom Lead Red Wings past Blue Jackets

Detroit goaltender Chris Osgood stopped all 26 shots that he faced and Tomas Holmstrom scored twice to lead the visiting Red Wings to a 4-0 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Both of Holmstrom’s goals came on the power play, as the Red Wings went two-for-seven with the man-advantage.

After a scoreless first period that saw the Blue Jackets control the play, Detroit took over the game.

Holmstrom’s first goal of the night opened the scoring at 7:06 of the middle frame. Jason Williams one-timed a shot from above the high slot that Holmstrom deflected down at the top of the crease and past Columbus goalie Pascal Leclaire.

With 1:51 left in the period, Mark Mowers scored his second goal of the season to put Detroit up by two, deflecting a Nicklas Lidstrom shot from the point past Leclaire.

Holmstrom’s second of the night came 4:52 into the third period. Pavel Datsyuk carried the puck behind the net and sent it out front into the slot, where Holmstrom was open to bang it back at the net and by Leclaire.

Mathieu Schnieder added a goal on a blast from the top of the left circle with 1:47 remaining in the game.

Detroit stopped all seven of Columbus’ power play chances.

Leclaire made 37 saves on 41 shots in the Blue Jackets’ net.

The Red Wings are back in action on Sunday when they visit the Colorado Avalanche for the first time this season. They earned a 7-3 win over Colorado in Detroit on November 23.

Henrik Zetterberg missed the game with a hip injury.

Red Wings Defeat Predators in Central Division Matchup

In the first completed game between the top two teams in the Central Division, the Detroit Red Wings earned a 3-1 win over the Nashville Predators. Detroit took a six point lead in the standings with the victory.

The Red Wings scored twice in the third period to secure the win.

Just 2:00 into the period, Jason Williams gave the Red Wings the lead when he was left all alone in front of the net on a broken play. Mikael Samuelsson got the puck to him and he lifted it over Nashville goalie Tomas Vokoun on a backhand shot.

Nicklas Lidstrom scored his second goal of the night with 6:53 left in the game. With Detroit on the power play, Steve Yzerman sent a cross-ice pass to Lidstrom at the top of the right circle. The goal was originally credited to Brendan Shanahan, who was screening the Nashville goalie in front of the crease and could have tipped the shot.

Nashville had opened the game’s scoring on a power play with 6:05 left in the first.

After a shot from the blue line was knocked aside, Vernon Fiddler picked up the rebound, got control of the puck, and put it past Detroit netminder Manny Legace.

The Red Wings tied the game with 2:44 left in the second period on Lidstrom’s first power play goal, a blast down the slot from the blue line.

Legace finished the game with 29 saves on 30 shots in his second game in as many nights after returning from injury. Vokoun made 33 saves on 36 shots.

Detroit went two-for-seven on the power play and held Nashville to one goal on four chances with the man-advantage.

The Red Wings will be back in action on Sunday when they host the Dallas Stars.

Johan Franzen did not play after suffering a mild injury Thursday night against St. Louis. Mark Mowers took his place… Yzerman’s assist tied him with Gordie Howe for seventh all-time in NHL assists.

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