Lidstrom Scores Twice as Red Wings Take Game One Against Ducks

Detroit captain Nicklas Lidstrom scored two goals Friday night, leading the Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks in the first game of their Western Conference Semifinal matchup.

Lidstrom’s second goal was the game-winner, scored with just 49.1 seconds remaining in regulation.

Corey Perry opened the game’s scoring, putting the Red Wings behind for the first time this playoff year. At 7:28 of the first period he blasted a shot from the top of the left circle past Detroit goalie Chris Osgood after being left uncovered on a defensive miscue.

A five-minute power play gave the Red Wings a chance to even things up. Mike Brown was given an interference major and a game misconduct for a late hit to the head of Jiri Hudler with 8:31 left in the period.

Johan Franzen drove to the net and shoved the puck past Jonas Hiller just 1:04 later, the only goal of the five-minute advantage.

Lidstrom put Detroit back in front with 5:36 left in the second period, scoring his first goal of the night on a power play slap shot from the top of the left circle.

Teemu Selanne tied things up with just 17 seconds left in the middle frame, converting on a rare four-on-three manpower advantage with a snap shot from near the left faceoff dot.

The teams traded scoring chances in the third, including a breakaway by Franzen 2:20 in and a close-in chance by Selanne just after the five-minute mark.

Lidstrom broke the tie by redirecting a Dan Cleary pass on net from the high slot. He then jumped down low to pick up the rebound and put it back between Hiller’s pads.

Hiller finished the night with 34 saves on 37 shots against. Osgood stopped 22 of 24 Anaheim chances.

The Red Wings finished the night two-for-six on the power play. The Ducks went one-for-three.

Game Two of the series is Saturday afternoon from Joe Louis Arena.

The Red Wings were without Kris Draper for the fifth-straight playoff game. They were also missing Brian Rafalski, who missed his first game of the playoffs with an upper-body injury… It was the second consecutive game that Detroit won with a goal in the closing minute of regulation… Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson and Anaheim forward Corey Perry fought at 4:12 of the second period.

Red Wings Shut Down Ducks, Rally for Win

The Detroit Red Wings held the Anaheim Ducks to a season-low 16 shots Monday night, with goaltender Chris Osgood stopping all but one as the Wings earned a hard-fought 2-1 win.

Chris Kunitz scored Anaheim’s lone goal just 1:50 into the game as he and Teemu Selanne pressured Detroit defenseman Brad Stuart into coughing up the puck behind the Wings’ net.

Selanne moved out to Osgood’s left but pushed the puck off to Kunitz, who came out to the right side of the Detroit netminder and backhanded a shot into the back of the net.

The Red Wings battled back, firing 38 shots on Anaheim goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere in the first two periods. With 5:34 left in the second, one of those found its way through as Nicklas Lidstrom sent a shot from the blue line that was tipped in front by Johan Franzen.

The goal was Franzen’s 100th career point and 60th career goal.

Giguere succumbed to dehydration in his first game in over a week and was forced to leave the game to start the third period, replaced by Jonas Hiller.

Hiller would stop eight of nine shots against but it was the first that slipped through, just 1:48 into the third.

Dan Cleary raced into the zone on a two-on-one with Marian Hossa, feeding the puck across for a shot by Hossa off the stick of defender Bret Hedican and between Hiller’s pads.

The Red Wings’ 47 total shots were a season-high for the team.

Neither team scored on the power play. Detroit had four tries with the extra attacker while Anaheim had two.

The Red Wings return to the ice on Thursday when they host the Vancouver Canucks.

Ducks Take Series Lead with OT win over Red Wings

The Anaheim Ducks never led on Sunday but they didn’t need to. Teemu Selanne scored with 8:03 remaining in overtime to give the Ducks a 2-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings, pushing them to a 3-2 series lead in their Western Conference Final matchup.

Selanne’s goal came after Andy MacDonald forced a turnover by Detroit blueliner Andreas Lilja. Selanne picked up the loose puck and skated in alone on goalie Dominik Hasek, who sprawled out to cover the bottom half of the net before Selanne roofed a shot over him.

Lilja had scored Detroit’s only goal of the game at 6:13 of the second period, blasting a shot past Anaheim netminder Jean-Sebastien Giguere off a pass from Dan Cleary, who had circled back after gaining the Anaheim zone to allow Lilja time to catch up with the play.

The Ducks tied the game with only 48 seconds remaining in regulation. On the power play and with Giguere on the bench for an extra attacker, Scott Niedermayer wristed a shot from the inside edge of the left circle off of the stick of defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom and over Hasek’s shoulder.

It was the lone power play goal of the game. Anaheim had five chances with the extra skater while the Red Wings had seven.

Anaheim outshot Detroit 8-3 in the overtime period but the Red Wings totalled 37 shots to the Ducks’ 26.

Game six of the series will be on Tuesday from the Honda Center in Anaheim. If the Red Wings win, game seven will be on Thursday from Detroit’s Joe Louis Arena.

Blown Opportunities: Ducks Win as Red Wings Fail to Capitalize on Suspension, Power Plays

The Detroit Red Wings had a chance to take a 3-1 series lead over the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday night – and do so with Anaheim defenseman Chris Pronger serving a one-game suspension for a high hit on Tomas Holmstrom in game three of their Western Conference Final matchup – but they failed on that opportunity, losing to the Ducks, 5-3.

En route to the loss, the Red Wings were unable to score on two long five-on-three chances, one in the second period and one in the third.

The Ducks got on the board just 1:37 into the game and would never trail.

After a failed outlet pass by Todd Bertuzzi, Corey Perry picked up the puck at the Detroit blue line. He stepped up to the top of the right circle and ripped a shot past Detroit netminder Dominik Hasek.

The Red Wings pulled even 1:52 later when Dan Cleary deflected a Chris Chelios pass in behind goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere.

Richard Jackman, in the lineup for the suspended Pronger, put the Ducks back out in front with 8:14 remaining in the opening period, slapping the puck into the back of the net from the high slot on an Anaheim power play.

Teemu Selanne extended the Ducks’ lead with 1:29 remaining, whacking a bouncing puck past Hasek from in close.

The Red Wings would rally in the second.

Bertuzzi atoned for his earlier miscue with a power play goal at 7:48. Robert Lang carried the puck behind the net before throwing it out front to Bertuzzi, who banged it home from the top of the crease.

Cleary would add a second goal with 4:24 remaining in the middle period, another Detroit power play goal. Bertuzzi tried a bank shot from behind the net off of Giguere but the puck came free in front of the net. With the Anaheim netminder scrambling and sprawled on the ice, Cleary lifted a shot over him and into the net.

The Ducks would retake – and hold – the lead in the third period.

Ryan Getzlaf scored on a wrister from the top of the right circle to pull the Ducks ahead on a power play at 5:24 and Rob Niedermayer added an empty net goal with 1:08 remaining.

Both teams finished the night with two power play goals. Detroit had six chances with the extra attacker while Anaheim had five.

Hasek made 18 saves on 22 shots against. Giguere stopped 36 of Detroit’s 39 shots.

The Ducks’ win means the series will now go at least six games. Game five will be on Sunday afternoon in Detroit and game six will be Tuesday night in Anaheim.

Western Conference Triumphant in All-Star Game

In the National Hockey League’s first All-Star Game since 2004, the Western Conference’s veteran team outscored an Eastern Conference squad led by young stars, picking up a 12-9 win.

It was the first win by the Western Conference since 2003 and only their second in the six games that have been played in the East vs. West format.

Daniel Briere of the Buffalo Sabres was the game’s MVP, scoring a goal and adding four assists in the losing effort.

Rick Nash of the Columbus Blue Jackets scored the eventual game-winning goal, one of his two goals on the night. He also assisted twice.

Other were Yanic Perrault (Phoenix Coyotes), Teemu Selanne (Anaheim Ducks), Martin St. Louis (Tampa Bay Lighting), Eric Staal (Carolina Hurricanes), Libomir Vishnovsky (Los Angeles Kings), Patrick Marleau (San Jose Sharks), Justin Williams (Carolina), Zdeno Chara (Boston Bruins), Martin Havlat (Chicago Blackhawks), Alexander Ovechkin (Washington Capitals), Brian Rolston (Minnesota Wild), Dany Heatley (Ottawa Senators), Sheldon Souray (Montreal Canadiens) and Dion Phaneuf (Calgary Flames).

Marty Turco of the hometown Dallas Stars got the win in goal while Cristobal Huet of Montreal took the loss, despite having the best save percentage of any of the Eastern Conference goalies.

Earlier in the day, the NHL announced that the Montreal Canadiens will host the 2009 All-Star Game as part of the celebration of the Canadiens’ 100th season. The Atlanta Thrashers will host in 2008, after originally having been selected to host the cancelled 2005 game.

Power Plays Lead Ducks over Red Wings

The Anaheim Ducks scored three times on ten power play chances en route to a 4-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings Wednesday night.

The three power play goals all came in the second period.

After an apparent goal by Teemu Selanne was called back for the net being off its moorings, Ryan Getzlaf scored at 8:46.

Just 1:40 later, Shane O’Brien scored his first NHL to extend Anaheim’s lead.

Chris Kunitz was credited with Anaheim’s third goal of the middle frame, though he later said he thought he didn’t get his stick on the puck as it slipped through Detroit goalie Dominik Hasek.

Corey Perry scored the Ducks’ lone even-strength goal with 6:20 in regulation but the Red Wings answered with Tomas Kopecky‘s first career goal 44 seconds later.

Hasek finished the night with 27 saves on 31 shots against while Anaheim netminder Jean-Sebastien Giguere stopped 21 of 22 shots.

The Red Wings will continue their road trip on Thursday in San Jose. Chris Osgood is expected to start in net for Detroit.

Red Wings Continue Streak with Win over Mighty Ducks

The Detroit Red Wings extended their winning streak to four games with a 3-1 victory over the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim on Wednesday night.

With the Mighty Ducks fighting to make the playoffs and the Red Wings battling for the top spot in the league, the defenses dominated the game.

Kris Draper‘s empty-net goal with ten seconds remaining in the game was the only goal not scored during the first period of play.

Henrik Zetterberg opened the game’s scoring just 1:00 in, fighting off Jeff Friesen at the blue line and skating into the right circle before whipping a shot off the far post and behind Anaheim netminder Jean-Sebastien Giguere.

With Detroit on a five-on-three at 10:45 of the period, Mathieu Schneider wired a shot from the high slot to the corner of the net as Tomas Holmstrom screened Giguere.

The Ducks got on the board with a power play goal of their own with 5:44 remaining in the period. Scott Niedermayer sent a crossing pass from behind and to the right of Detroit goalie Chris Osgood and Teemu Selanne was left alone to bang home a shot from the opposite side of the net.

The goalies were key in the game with Osgood stopping 25 of 26 shots in the second of rare consecutive starts. Giguere made 26 saves on the 28 shots he faced.

Detroit finished the game one-for-four on the power play, with Anaheim going one-for-six.

The Red Wings now head on the road for a short Western Canada trip. They will visit the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday and the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday.

Americans, Canadians Drop Second-straight

The United States and Canada each dropped their second game in a row on Sunday, as the Americans suffered a 2-1 loss to Sweden and Canada fell to Finland, 2-0. It was the second time in as many days that the Canadians were held without a goal.

Antero Nittymaki (Philadelphia Flyers) made 24 saves to lead the Finns to the win while goals came from Teemu Selanne (Mighty Ducks of Anaheim) and Niko Kapanen (Dallas Stars).

With 8:46 remaining in the first period, Saku Koivu (Montreal Canadiens) beat Canadian defenseman Chris Pronger (Edmonton Oilers) in a battle for possession behind the goal. He sent a pass out to Selanne for an open shot at the goal.

Kapanen scored just minutes later when a shot by Kimmo Timonen (Nashville Predators) was tipped by Ville Niemenin (New York Rangers) off the back boards. The puck came to Kapanen for a tip in past Team Canada goalie Roberto Luongo (Florida Panthers).

Even without superstar Peter Forsberg (Flyers), Sweden was able to hold off a late comeback by the United States.

Rick DiPietro (New York Islanders) made 24 saves but two goals allowed were enough to hand the Americans their second loss.

Sweden’s Daniel Alfredsson (Ottawa Senators) opened the game’s scoring at 7:50 of the first period, flipping a shot over the sprawling DiPietro.

Mike Modano (Stars) scored late in the period on a delayed penalty to tie the game but that was all the scoring the Americans would get.

At 4:22 of the third, Mikael Samuelsson (Detroit Red Wings) kicked the rebound of a shot by Alfredsson from his skate to his stick and banged it into the net for the eventual game-winner.

Canada is now 2-2-0 in the tournament and will advance to the quarterfinal round. The United States is 1-2-1 and can advance with a tie or win against Russia, a Latvian loss, or even a Latvian win in some cases.

New Name Coming for Mighty Ducks

As originally reported by the Web site SportsLogos.Net on Wednesday, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim confirmed on Thursday that they will be known as the Anaheim Ducks following the completion of the current NHL season.

Nearly two thirds of fans surveyed said they supported the switch.

The unconventional name, placing the team nickname first followed by “of Anaheim,” was chosen by Disney chairman Michael Eisner when the team entered the league in 1993. The team was named after the Disney childrens’ movie “The Mighty Ducks.”

At the time, the choice was ridiculed by hockey purists, including original Ducks’ head coach Ron Wilson, who asked, “How can they do this in the National Hockey League?”

The change came after months of research by a public relations firm.

“While there was support for keeping the current name, the majority of those surveyed, nearly two thirds, supported some sort of name change,” David Paine, CEO of PainePR, said in a release. “At the same time, the research found strong support generally for preserving the history of the team in some way.”

“In selecting the name the Anaheim Ducks,” said Ducks owner Henry Samueli, “we are respecting the heritage of a tremendous organization that has been a very important and visible part of the community, not to mention Western Conference champions and a Stanley Cup finalist.”

Two-time Mighty Duck Teemu Selanne was happy with the name change.

“It’s really good that the new owners are going to keep the same Ducks name. People know the Ducks are from Anaheim. The Ducks were part of the original name. Maybe the ‘Mighty’ was more about the Disney side of it.

“Anaheim Ducks feels great.”

The team’s logos and uniforms are also expected to change.

“The process is still very much underway and we do not expect to be ready to make any further announcements until the end of the season,” Samueli stated.

Wings Hold Off Ducks as Babcock Faces Former Team

The Detroit Red Wings took an early 2-0 lead on power play goals and held off a surging Mighty Ducks of Anaheim team to hold on for a 3-2 win. It was the first meeting between the Wings and Ducks since head coach Mike Babcock left Anaheim for Detroit.

Pavel Datsyuk opened the scoring with a power play goal 4:37 into the game. Jason Woolley grabbed the puck at the blue line and sent it down to Datsyuk in the left circle, who fired a shot over the shoulder of Anaheim goalie Ilja Bryzgalov.

Robert Lang put Detroit up by two with the Red Wings’ second power play goal, scoring through a screen from the left circle at 9:56.

The Ducks struck back with 2:31 remaining in the opening period. Teemu Selanne got a pass from Scott Neidermayer in the low slot and one-timed the puck past Detroit netminder Manny Legace.

After a scoreless second period, the Wings’ power play struck again in the third. Mikael Samuelsson scored his sixth goal in eight games at 4:55, tipping a shot by Jason Woolley past Bryzgalov from the low slot.

At 7:58, Ryan Getzlaf pulled the Ducks back within one, firing a shot from the point that deflected off Dan Cleary‘s stick and over Legace’s glove.

In the closing minutes, the Ducks couldn’t control the puck to get a chance at tying the game and the Wings held on for the victory.

Legace finished the game with 23 saves on 25 shots while Bryzgalov made 36 stops on 39 shots.

The Detroit power play went 3-for-8. Anaheim went 1-for-4 with the man advantage.

The Red Wings will be back in action Saturday night for the first of two straight games in Columbus.

With Kris Draper injured and the Grand Rapids Griffins on a road trip, the Red Wings dressed seven defensemen rather than call up a 12th forward. Draper could return on Saturday.