Detroit pulled the chute roster-wise for their final game of the season which had no implications for them and still embarrassed the injury-depleted Blues 3-0, ensuring that either the Blues or the Blackhawks would be eliminated in the first round. Hahahaha. Those assholes thought they were free of us.
Neither team scored with the power play (0/4 DET & 0/3 STL). Chances laid out just about how they were supposed to. The Blues oushot Detroit 23-21.
Petr Mrazek had a fantastic outing, which is good because getting shutouts is apparently the only way he can win games in the NHL. Seriously, he should be the backup next season.
1st Period 13:30 - Detroit Goal: Justin Abdelkader (tip in) from Brian Lashoff and Pavel Datsyuk
Detroit makes up for the lost power play goal by scoring one at even-strength off a great zone entry and setup by Datsyuk to get Lashoff a great shot at an Abdelkader screen. Abby tips it past Miller and the Wings go up 1-0. The play starts with Kindl making a step-up in the neutral zone which stops the Blues' transition and allows Detroit to get their line change completed. St. Louis recovers after Abdelkader gets swarmed, but the delay allows Datsyuk to get on and be in position to pick off a pass at center and head the other way. Abdelkader and Nyquist join as Datsyuk races up the right wing side, keeping space away from the boards to limit Bouwmeester's defensive options. As Datsyuk gets to the corner, he pulls up sharply and lets Bouwmeester skate by him. Cracknell watches Nyquist in the middle and Cracknell watches the back door (Abdelkader is already at the net-front behind Shattenkirk by now). After Datsyuk pulls up, he tosses a saucer pass to the far point where Lashoff skates into it. The Wings' defenseman releases a wrister from just above the top of the circle that hits Abdelkader and bounces in past Miller. Kindl will get a bonus plus for killing the transition and allowing this play to develop. Datsyuk will also get a plus for the neutral zone interception and speed creating the rush.
2nd Period 16:19 - Detroit Goal: Riley Sheahan (wrist shot) from Tomas Tatar
Sheahan makes it 2-0 on a roofed snipe-shot that he puts between the D-man's legs. After a good scoring chance for the Wings, St. Louis brings down Tatar and gives themselves a 3-on-2 rush. Lashoff breaks it up with a sliding play to break up Ryan Reaves' centering pass. St. Louis gets it back up to the point with lots of traffic in front of Mrazek. Colaiacovo blasts it, but the puck bounces off Sheahan up to Tatar at the top of the circle. Tatar recognizes Bertuzzi streaking up the wing and tries to bounce it up to him, only to hit the linesman at the Blues bench. The puck bounces to center where Sheahan beats Shattenkirk to it and just flips it up past him to get himself into the zone. Bertuzzi skating along the St. Louis blue line while this is happening forces Colaiacovo to back off as Sheahan enters the zone. Fortunately for the Wings, Cola backs off way too far and gives Sheahan space to get inside the top of the circle. From here, Sheahan rips it through Colaiacovo's legs and inside the top corner. Lashoff will get a plus for the good defensive play which helps stop the odd-man rush. Tatar makes a great read on getting the blocked shot and Bertuzzi plays his position wonderfully to give Sheahan space, which he uses very well. I'm going to give Sheahan, Bertuzzi, and Tatar each a half-plus.
3rd Period 12:43 - Detroit Goal: Justin Abdelkader (tip in) from Pavel Datsyuk and Jakub Kindl
Abdelkader goes to the front of the net with his stick in the right position and it pays off in a big way as Datsyuk nails him with a pass for a tip past Miller that puts the Wings up 3-0. The Wings get into the zone along the left boards, but aren't able to get it deep or keep it in on the ensuing battle as the Blues get a lucky bounce. Fortunately, the transition is flat-footed and the Wings are able to regain possession as Nyquist pressures Porter at the blue line and Datsyuk picks off his passing attempt, going back to Kindl for a d-to-d pass over to Quincey which allows the forwards to set up a play through center. Kindl gets the puck back at the top of his own circle and waits half a beat before throwing it back across up ice to Datsyuk now on the right wing side. Datsyuk makes a slick little play to take the puck in full stride while keeping Aucoin from jumping over to pinch him off inside the blue line. This also freezes Leopold backing into his own zone because he recognizes that both Abdelkader and Nyquist are jumping into the zone through the center lane and both are behind Aucoin, creating a situation where two men are rushing in against Polak covering the center. The room that Leopold has to give provides all the space Datsyuk needs to saucer a pass right onto Abdelkader's stick as he meets the puck between the hash marks (Polak has to let Abdelkader by or risk Datsyuk hitting Nyquist instead and creating the same result. Abby tips the puck to the top corner and that's all she wrote. I'm going to give the plus that Lashoff gets for having just stepped on back to Quincey, who was actually involved in the play. Nyquist will earn a half-plus for helping kill transition while Datsyuk will earn a full plus for his contributions to this play.
1st Period 06:58 - Xavier Ouellet (holding the stick): The Blues get a high-pressure shift in the zone that leads to Ouellet taking a call when he holds onto his man behind the net trying to prevent him from creating a rebound chance. Ouellet will get a minus. I'm also going to give minuses to Helm and Kindl on this shift. Both had bad clearing attempts kept in on this minute-long shift in their own zone.
1st Period 07:59 - Carlo Colaiacovo (hooking): Helm gets a shorthanded chance to cut in on the net that's cut short by a Colaiacovo hook. Helm will get a plus for this one, but so will Brendan Smith, who quickly gets to the dump-in and makes a perfect clear to create this situation.
1st Period 09:48 - Joakim Andersson (goaltender interference): The Wings score on a power play, but the goal is canceled and Joker goes to the box for goaltender interference. This is an easy call to make, as Andersson does give Miller's stick a bit of a chop. I'm going to give Andersson a minus. There's no need for him to do this.
1st Period 13:49 - Magnus Paajarvi (delay of game): Detroit gets a power play as Paajarvi puts a puck over the glass behind the benches from inside his own zone. No adjustment on this one. Helm is on him, but not well enough to force this error..
2nd Period 09:38 - Jordan Leopold (holding): Detroit puts good pressure on in the offensive zone, cycling around the low left corner before Andersson draws one by stepping around the defenseman to get a loose puck and drawing a hold. Andersson will get a plus and Helm a half-plus for the movement leading to this penalty.
2nd Period 12:18 - Luke Glendening (roughing): St. Louis gets a 3-on-1 break that ends with Mrazek stoning Lapierre on the doorstep. As is customary on amazing scoring chances like this, the refs find an excuse to penalize the team that got lucky enough not to be scored o. This time, Glendening goes for a rough after he and Leopold trade a few cross-checks near a loose puck behind the Wings' net. This isn't a strong call and Glendening isn't going to take a minus for such a situational penalty. However, the situation of the penalty (the 3-on-1 rush), was caused by Smith jumping off the ice while the Blues were already starting to break out of their own zone. I'm going to give Smith the minus on this one.
2nd Period 19:54 - Alexander Steen (cross-checking): Detroit wins an offensive zone faceoff late in the period, no thanks to Sheen hitting Sheahan in the face right off the draw. This is a dipshit play by Steen as he nails Sheahan. No adjustment.
+1 to Brendan Smith, +2 to Xavier Ouellet, and Ryan Sproul: All three of these defensemen had strong games and weren't otherwise rewarded for it on the adjustments. I thought the Wings' defense was very good in this game for large stretches.
+1 to Joakim Andersson and Darren Helm, +0.5 to Drew Miller and Luke Glendening: I though these four played very well on the defensive side of the puck
Great way to finish the season.
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