The Islanders came into Detroit for a New Years Eve game and left with two points at the expense of the Wings. Tomas Tatar scored his first NHL goal in his first ever game with the big club, but other than that, there's not a ton to be happy with when your club gives points away to a team like the Islanders. All credit to John Tavares and the boys for their tenacity and hard work in earning their victory.
Detroit outshot New York 41-23 and outchanced them on the power play 5-2. However, when it was all said and done, Dwayne Roloson came away with a 0.927 save percentage, including stopping all seven of Detroit's power play shots. On the other end, the Islanders power play capitalized on both of the opportunities given to them. Detroit scored the first goal, but gave up three unanswered before catching back up and eventually falling in overtime. Since it's too late to do two separate recap posts, we're going to put Player of the Game voting at the bottom of the post. Head down there to make your selection.
Now that's over with, let's get to the analysis.
Jimmy Howard did not have a good game, but he wasn't terrible either. He wasn't tested often, but had to come up big a couple of times. I didn't like the Tavares backhander getting through him though. Overall, his rating on the night is +1.5.
Scoring and plus/minus adjustments after the jump
1st Period 11:52 - Detroit Goal: Johan Franzen (snap shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Tomas Holmstrom
After Bertuzzi brings it in for a line change and gives it up, Zetterberg pressures the puck, which is dumped up the boards for Holmstrom to intercept. Holmstrom gets it to Zetterberg behind the net where he crosses sides of the ice and feeds it to Franzen at an acute angle. Mule lets off a quick snap shot that sneaks through Roloson for the first of the game. Bertuzzi bringing it in and holding for a bit as well as Zetterberg's pressure gets them each a half-plus.
1st Period 13:22 - New York Goal (PP): Matt Moulson (tip in) from Andrew MacDonald and John Tavares
New York is on this power play because of a bad penalty Bertuzzi takes for goaltender interference. Bertuzzi gets a minus for this. Off a clean face off win in the Wings' zone by Tavares, Moulson feeds MacDonald at the point for a slap shot through traffic that tips off Moulson's stick and off of Jimmy Howard's shoulder up in the air. In his effort to clear, Nick Lidstrom puts this puck in the net. Lidstrom gets a minus for scoring on his own team while Zetterberg a half-minus for losing the faceoff cleanly.
1st Period 19:57 - New York Goal: John Tavares (backhand) from Bruno Gervais and Zenon Konopka
The Wings take an icing at the end of the first thanks to a combination of a pass that's too long from Stuart and skating that's not hard enough from Lidstrom. Zenon Konopka wins the faceoff back to Gervais, who tries to throw it on net, but has it blocked out front. The puck falls at the feet of Tavares, who throws a backhand through Jimmy Howard. I'm crediting Howard with half a bad goal here. I know he's in close and backhands are hard to judge, but that's got to be stopped. Also, both Stuart and Lidstrom get extra half-minuses for their combined effort which causes the icing faceoff. Miller, and Mursak are cleared of their minuses. Abelkader keeps a half-minus only for losing the faceoff.
2nd Period 15:13 - New York Goal: Jesse Joenssu (tip in) from Milan Jurcina and Matt Martin
Another clean offensive zone faceoff win by Konopka leads the puck to Matt Martin's stick. Martin is caught a bit flat-footed by the way the puck moves, so he makes a diving play to poke it to Martin at the point. Martin throws a wrister low at traffic for Joenssu to tip past Howard. This faceoff loss is Filppula's, so the extra half-minus is his too.
2nd Period 19:51 - Detroit Goal: Valtteri Filppula (wrist shot) from Darren Helm and Nicklas Lidstrom
Darren Helm loses a defensive zone faceoff, but does good work to get the puck back and out and then later to keep possession in the neutral zone for Flip to carry in. Filppula brings in and rags it at the boards for a quick turn while things get set up in front before delivering it to Lidstrom for a shot through traffic. The initial shot is blocked, but the rebound gets to Helm, who puts it off the post. It bounces high in the air, but Filppula brings it down and puts it in the net while Roloson is flopping around like Hasek looking for an interference call on Bertuzzi (he was pushed in). Bert gets an assist here while Helm gets a bonus plus. Filppula also gets a bonus assist.
Penalty Adjustment: Early in the third period, as the Wings are trying to beat the Isles' trap, they manage to do just that with some good work cycling back and finding a guy moving on the other end. Zetterberg takes a pass at the blue line, but it bounces off his stick. As he's pressured, he pokes it to Franzen to enter the zone with speed, forcing Andrew MacDonald to trip him. He still gets a pass to Zetterberg that might be a goal if not for a broken stick [Damn composites!]. Franzen gets a plus here.
3rd Period 10:18 - Detroit Goal: Tomas Tatar (tip in) from Darren Helm and Brian Rafalski
Draper tosses a cross-ice dump into the New York zone that Tatar fights to free up. He manages to get around one guy and poke it partially past another, forcing him to try a quicker pass around the other forechecker Draper. Rafalski steps up on his man to pressure it and the puck goes deeper in where Draper fights for it on the boards and pushes it back to Rafalski, who can now take it off the boards and pass to Helm in the middle high in the zone. Helm throws the puck at the net while Tatar takes his man in from in front. The puck deflects off the back of Tatar's stick as he moves into position and dribbles off Roloson and in for the game-tying goal and Tatar's first of his career. The hard work forechecking will get Tatar a bonus half-plus, while Draper will get an assist and a half-plus on the play.
Overtime 3:57 - New York Goal (PP): PA Parenteau (snap shot) from John Tavares and Andrew MacDonald
This play starts a couple minutes prior when Helm's quick turn forces Blake Comeau to trip him. On the ensuing power play, after Franzen has his stick broken by a slash, Zetterberg takes a holding penalty. The refs had been letting stuff go and they probably should have called the slash, but Zetterberg's hold was obvious and very easy to call. I'm giving Helm a plus for drawing one and Zetterberg a minus for taking one. After the 3-on-3 expires, New York heads to the power play. The Islanders cycle the puck around the zone a bit before MacDonald throws a pass cross-corner that Helm gets a piece of, but Tavares knocks down with good hand-eye coordination. Tavares steps out and toward the middle to open up a lane to Parenteau for the one-timer through Howard as me moves across his crease. No additional adjustment here.
+1 to Darren Helm: His speed all over the ice created lots of chances for the Red Wings and gave the trap fits.
+1 to Valtteri Filppula: The only Wings player who consistently was able to move the puck through center ice with speed. It was good to see Flip get a goal for his hard work, but I think he deserves a bonus plus to go along with it for everything that wasn't necessarily credited.
+1 to Tomas Holmstrom: Homer led the team with 5 SOG and was his usual beastly self. The man just battles everywhere on the ice.
-0.5 to Brian Rafalski: Raffi turned the puck over several times in his own defensive zone. He made a couple of nice outlet passes, but not enough to make up for the scoring chances he helped New York create.
Honorable Mentions: Hudler's point streak snapped at two games, but that had more to do with a couple of really good defensive plays by the Isles to keep him off the scoreboard. I still want him to shoot more though. Also, Nick Kronwall was offensively dangerous with his forays deep into the zone, but his high-risk, high-reward style doesn't get rewarded when it doesn't pay off and creates a couple of risky situations the other way.
Philadelphia up next. Should be a tough game.