After an ugly performance against Boston earlier in the week, the Wings rebounded nicely with a convincing win over the Maple Leafs at the ACC on Friday night. Johan Franzen scored twice and Henrik Zetterberg put up four assists as the Wings won 4-1.
Aside from a missed high stick, I thought the reffing was good in this game. The Wings got 5 power plays to Toronto's 2 because they deserved that advantage. Neither team scored on the power play, but Detroit outshot the Leafs 35-24.
The one goal that Jimmy Howard allowed was not a particularly good one to give up, but I don't particularly care, since he stopped the other 23. On the other end of the ice, James Reimer wasn't given nearly as much help, but he also gave up one softy.
1st Period 10:00 - Detroit Goal: Johan Franzen (tip-in) from Henrik Zetterberg
Detroit gets the first goal of the game on a Zetterberg steal that turns into a pretty cross-crease pass for a finish by Franzen. After Polak gets the puck off Hank's stick on a failed zone entry, Zetterberg chases him all the way deep into the Leafs' zone before lifting his stick and stealing it off him so bad that Polak falls down. A fake freezes Percy enough to get Zetterberg back above the icing line in the corner where he threads a pass that finds Franzen on the back door (after Nyquist misses it on the near post). Mule finishes and it's 1-0. Zetterberg will get a plus for the great steal that created this goal.
2nd Period 05:42 - Detroit Goal: Johan Franzen (wrist shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader
Detroit doubles their lead on a high-tip in that gets Z in behind the defense and he takes advantage of the chaos with a pretty pass to Franzen following up for an easy put in over a downed Reimer. David Clarkson throws a pass from his own blue line up the boards that doesn't come close to connecting with Lupul and instead ends up on Kronwall's stick. Kronner goes to Smith at the far side and Smith rifles it up to center where Abdelkader is watched by Rielly. Instead of forcing something, Abby tips the puck high into the air into the Leafs' zone. Zetterberg tracks it there and is moving in the right direction when it lands in front of him. Jake Gardiner is going the wrong way and can't stop Z from getting in on the goal. Hank drags Reimer across his crease with Gardiner in tow. As he gets Reimer all the way down, Gardiner gets his stick in to take away a good shooting opportunity. Instead, what Hank does is make a beautiful backhand pass to Franzen following up for the easy goal. This heads up play will earn both Abdelkader and Zetterberg a half-plus.
2nd Period 18:16 - Detroit Goal: Gustav Nyquist (wrist shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Jakub Kindl
Nyquist just won't stop scoring and Zetterberg won't stop assisting. This one on a beauty feed that Reimer opens up the five-hole wide on. A good forecheck by the third line earns both a Leafs center ice turnover and a line change (and a smart play by Abdelkader not to touch the puck during that change). Smith collects at his own blue line and goes to Kindl as the change finishes. Kindl tries going cross-ice up to Zetterberg on the right wing, but Kadri gets his stick on it and tips it high in the air. Just like in the last goal, Zetterberg tracks under it perfectly and gains control in a dangerous spot. Polak is there to keep Hank from getting an immediate chance, but the defense is still scrambling when Zetterberg circles to the outside and spins to find a lane to Gustav Nyquist driving into the middle (Winnik is too low and Kadri is too slow here). Abdelkader is at the net-front taking up Cody Franson's attention, so nobody is able to do much of anything as Nyquist glides through the slot and calmly slides it through Reimer's five-hole. This is a pretty play, but there won't be any adjustments. This one is a combo of good luck, players doing exactly what they should be doing, and the Leafs' defense being bad.
3rd Period 00:21 - Toronto Goal: Mike Santorelli (backhand) from Leo Komarov and David Clarkson
The Leafs start the third period pretty well as they get an odd-man rush goal early. The Wings can't get it deep in the Leafs' zone and Phaneuf picks it up to carry to the wall under pressure by Nyquist with Zetterberg watching up the boards. Phaneuf flips it up off the glass and then follows up to make sure it gets out of the zone, catching Abdelkader pinching just inside the blue line for some reason. This springs all three Leafs forwards against the two Wings' defensemen. Clarkson pulls it out of the zone and starts up on the right wing, quickly passing over to Komarov on the left while Santorelli joins in the middle. Komarov carries in while Santorelli drives the lane and Clarkson falls in behind. Quincey lets Komarov in but squares to him as he takes it wide. DeKeyser plays it to make sure he can make a play on Clarkson, letting Santorelli go. This turns out badly as Komarov gets the pass through Quincey on to Santorelli's stick as he approaches the near-side post. Howard guesses that Santorelli will come back to his forehand and bites on that, easily giving up the top part of the net as the Leafs' forward roofs it over him. This is a bad goal for Howard to give up, but I'm only clearing the minuses for Nyquist and Zetterberg. Abdelkader keeps his minus for the pinch that leads to the 3-on-2 while both defensemen will keep their minuses as well. In fact, Quincey is going to pull a half-minus worth of extra blame for his coverage. DeKeyser is still partially responsible here, but he makes the heady play in making sure he has Clarkson covered because he has to trust that Quincey is going to prevent the pass to Santorelli. Quincey's failure makes DeKeyser's decision look worse than it is (although DK keeps blame because I think he could have covered Santorelli closer and made an adjustment if the pass comes to Clarkson).
3rd Period 05:51 - Detroit Goal: Justin Abdelkader (tip-in) from Gustav Nyquist and Henrik Zetterberg
The Wings get the lead back up to three with a beauty of a pass from Nyquist to Abdelkader streaking to the net with his stick on the ice. Detroit dumps the puck in and Nyquist combines with Abdelkader to pinch Phaneuf off behind the net. Dion goes up the boards to Komarov, but an aggressive pinch by Quincey here forces a weak clearing attempt that Zetterberg picks off at the point. Santorelli pressures Z into chucking a backhand lob deeper into the zone, which turns out great. The puck is low enough for Phaneuf to touch with his big dumb paws as he jumps for it at the faceoff dot, but too high for him to control. Instead, the puck lands at the bottom of the circle where Nyquist gets it. Goose delays to freeze Franson in front of the net while Phaneuf is trying to recover. This leads to Phaneuf over-collapsing and giving Nyquist room to move it to the bottom of the circle. From here, it's a matter of a brilliantly-threaded pass to the top of the crease where Abdelkader's stick meets the puck to put it past Reimer. I'm going to give Quincey a half-plus for the brilliant pinch here. This is the kind of well-controlled aggression the defensemen should be practicing.
1st Period 07:03 - Nazem Kadri (high-sticking) against Darren Helm: Helm gets the puck to the middle of the ice on a good play by Nestrasil and Kadri responds by committing his second high-stick of the game. This one actually gets called. I'm going to give Helm a half-plus for protecting the puck well, but Nestrasil will get a full-plus. His forecheck is the reason the Wings get the puck and his good pass is what springs Helm.
1st Period 13:41 - Roman Polak (cross checking) against Darren Helm: Danger draws another as he takes position to play the puck behind the net and Polak does a bad thing by cracking him across the back with his stick. Darren's good positioning lets Polak be stupid here so it'll be a half-plus for Helm.
1st Period 17:23 - David Clarkson (tripping) against Jakub Kindl: Clarkson just corkscrews Kindl deep in the Detroit zone. This is a dumbass penalty, but Kindl will get a half-plus for putting himself in great position to let Clarkson be stupid.
1st Period 18:51 - Johan Franzen (hooking) against Brandon Kozun: Mule takes the Wings off a PK by losing the puck at the top of the zone and then hooking Kozun to prevent a breakaway. Minus for Franzen.
2nd Period 03:14 - Justin Abdelkader (holding the stick) against Mike Santorelli: The Wings are putting on decent pressure in the offensive zone looking for space to get a scoring chance. Abdelkader is holding off Santorelli skating up along the boards and does so by aggressively holding the guy's stick. This is illegal. Abdelkader gets a minus.
2nd Period 10:52 - Justin Abdelkader (slashing) & Dion Phaneuf (cross checking) against each other: Two guys getting mad and cheating. Nothing to see here. No adjustment.
3rd Period 11:14 - Peter Holland (hooking) against Tomas Tatar: Tatar gets in aggressively on a dump out of the zone where he gets good position on Holland coming up the boards, stealing the puck and threatening a dangerous chance. Holland responds by hooking. Tatar will get a plus.
3rd Period 12:21 - Dion Phaneuf (roughing) against Justin Abdelkader: Phaneuf is trying to prove how tough and bad and awesome he is and he does it by bringing his elbow up into Abdelkader's head. Ordinarily I'd give no adjustment, but Abdelkader is going to get a plus for this because he was pissing Phaneuf off all night.
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Glendening comes out looking pretty bad by the numbers in a game where the eye test was positive for all four forward lines, but the zone starts chart below does help explain that away a bit (and also that he spent a fair bit of time against the Leafs' top line). The rest of the fourth line and Jonathan Ericsson were the only other players with minus Corsi ratings at 5-on-5. Score effects don't help explain things either because the Wings actually pulled away in the third.
Quincey's team-high Corsi rating goes along nicely with exactly how noticeable he was in this game for good reasons. Smith had a good first period, but looked like he was returning to Earth when he got put back on a pair with DeKeyser.
Off ZS %
For faceoffs, the fact that five players out of 18 got fewer than half of their non-neutral starts in the offensive zone was definitely by design, considering the Wings had almost 60% of the total offensive zone starts. This helps shine some light on how well Kronwall played overall.
The Wings controlled play well. They limited mistakes against a dangerous counterattack offense and kept pressure on in the Toronto zone continually. This one could have been a blowout. It was every bit as close as the 4-1 final score indicated. I especially want to say how glad I am that Henrik Zetterberg had a strong bounce-back performance after his ugly outing against Boston on Wednesday.
Corsi Timeline from Hockeystats.ca