Detroit played a game on Thursday night in what feels like the first one since the Yankees were still a playoff thing. Fortunately, they are not a playoff thing anymore and the Red Wings spent all of that intervening time remembering how to play hockey. Meanwhile, the Canucks were on their 2nd game of back-to-back nights after an ugly game against the Flyers ended in a 5-4 loss for the defending Western Conference Champs.
Justin Abdelkader proved his penchant for scoring game-winners against Cory Schneider with his scoring-opening and eventual game-winning tally off a Todd Bertuzzi feed in the 2nd period. Valtteri Filppula, who has now apparently added a love of shooting the puck to his love of double consonants and having pretty hair, added the insurance marker not long after the first. The Wings wouldn't need another goal, but they should have scored one, since they had a total of 7 PP opportunities in this game and failed to convert on all of them.
Highlights and bullet points after the jump.
- Detroit's power play looked pretty dangerous, but they are now 0-for 16. If they score on their next four chances, they can bring the efficiency up to 20%. If they're just looking to waste twelve minutes per game, I suppose doing so while having an extra man on the ice is as good a time as any.
- Fortunately, the PK did their job again and raised the team's percentage to a more respectable 80% efficiency. I thought they did an excellent job tracking in lanes to keep the play to the outside while being patient with a very dangerous unit (heh). They pinched when they could and backed off when they had to.
- Niklas Kronwall took four shots on goal and blocked six. SIX shots. That's almost as many shots as Ericsson blocked all of last year. If you had a penny for every time Kronwall blocked a shot, by the end of the game, you'd have a Bruce Willis movie (spoiler alert: he was dead the whole time). If you had a bat, I bet you'd throw it at me for making that pun.
- More fun with stupidly small sample sizes, Detroit's defense hasn't given up a goal in a calendar week. Before we get too excited, we should give proper credit to the luck of the Canucks blowing two absolutely dynamite chances to bury it. Hey, when you live right, things go right. Am I right?
- So... Mikael Samuelsson dives and Henrik Sedin slew-foots? I feel this is a bizarro world. All we need is for there to have been a boarding call on Todd Bertuzzi which was pretty soft. Oh..what? You're shitting me. Well while we're just accepting this, Jiri Hudler backchecks and is tied for the team lead in points.
- Final goofy stat of the night: The Wings have ten goals in their three games this season. Each of the ten have been scored by a different person. There is nobody with more than one.
Vote for your player of the game below and we can get ready for Saturday's game.