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Goodbye, Joe: Red Wings 4, Devils 1

Riley Sheahan leads Detroit to one last win at The Joe. Seriously.

NHL: New Jersey Devils at Detroit Red Wings Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports


“The episodes in life that last so many years in memory are often measured in fleeting moments as they happen.”

When the Red Wings won Game Six over the Penguins on June 4, 2008 to win the Stanley Cup, Doc Emrick commemorated the occasion with these words.

They were not original to Emrick, however, as he was quoting the late Patriot-News writer Steve Summers. I can’t think of a better tribute to an arena that has built so many lasing memories for its fans.

Today, April 9th, will mark the end of several streaks: The end of Red Wings games being played at Joe Louis Arena. The end of the 25 season playoff streak. The end of Riley Sheahan’s goalless drought.

Ok, two out of three will definitely happen. We’ll see about the third one.

I can’t be there (obviously, as I’m writing the recap), but I’m really glad that Kyle, JJ, and Jeff could:

The Devils have absolutely nothing to play for today. Will we let them ruin the last game played at The Joe?

(Let’s hope this is true when the game is over)

First Period

What is it called when you are smiling, laughing, and crying at the same time? Because that’s what the pre-game video make me do.

Henrik Zetterberg is recognized prior to his 1,000th game with a fantastic video tribute.

Oh, and this happened:

If this is how emotional it is before the game even starts, I can’t imagine how it will feel when the final whistle blows.

The first of many lasts occurs as the puck drops to start the game.

Matt Lorito nearly scores the first goal of the game on a setup by Larkin.

Niklas Kronwall it tripped at the blue line, and before I could yell at the TV, the official raised his arm, and Detroit goes to the first power play of the night.

Detroit had over a minute of sustained zone time in the beginning of the power play, and several good chances, but no goals.

Dylan Larkin is flying today. Mickey Redmond is between the team benches tonight, and he is loving the view.

Hey everyone.

I have something to tell you, and you are not going to believe it.

Riley Sheahan scored. This is not a joke. This really happened. He takes the puck at the side of the net, powers to the slot, and roofs it!

It’s great to see how happy Sheahan’s teammates are for him, especially Nielsen.

Larkin is taken down in the corner and draws a penalty. The Wings go to their second power play of the game.

Detroit can’t score, but they are getting some good looks. Zetterberg looks especially dangerous, which should not be surprising.

GOOOOOOALLLL! Riley Sh.... Just kidding.

Tomas Tatar makes it 2-0. Zetterberg protects the puck, and gets it to Nyquist. Nyquist shoots, and Tatar buries the rebound from in close. The Wings are dominating as much as you would hope they would.

Detroit takes a penalty and takes forever to touch the puck, but they finally do, and NJ goes to their first power play of the game.

We are up to 12 octopi sightings as of the Tatar goal.

The period ends 2-0. Detroit is outshooting New Jersey 17-5.

Sheahan scored. Wings are dominating. Things are good. And for anyone who is upset at the number of octopi raining down on the ice:

Second Period

The Fox Sports Detroit Octopi count is up to 13.

Riley Sheahan makes a top-notch move, putting the puck through his legs to beat his man and drive the net. Amazing how he can move now that he has King Kong off his back.

Zetterberg nearly sets up Tatar for another goal.

New Jersey has more energy this period, but Detroit is still dominating.

Out of seemingly nowhere, the Captain scores in his 1,000th game!

Nyquist feeds it from the top of the circles to Zetterberg near the goal line. He beats Schneider from a severe angle to make it 3-0.

Matt Lorito nearly got his first NHL goal, but he just can’t get it under Schneider.

Jimmy Howard really wants to keep Sheahan as the game winning goal scorer as he makes a ridiculous save.

As Gary Bettman was interviewed, Jimmy Howard made at least three high quality saves.

I was going to comment on Bettman’s interview, but it’s hard to top this from Lauren:

The period ends 3-0, and the Wings are still dominating.

Are we ready to close this game out?

Third Period

We are up to 15 octopi.

This is the last period of play at The Joe. Please forgive me if this section of the recap is a little light as I soak it in.

John Moore scored from a horrible angle to make it 3-1, denying both Jimmy Howard the shutout and Riley Sheahan the game winning goal, and I hate him.

So much for soaking it in. Fourteen seconds later Taylor Hall pounces on a rebound and it’s 3-2.

This is just a ploy to get Zetterberg on record as scoring the last game winning goal, right? Right?


The goal is coming back. Toronto said that Hall kicked it in. Sure. I’m good with that. It’s still 3-1.

Detroit takes a penalty, and NJ goes to the power play with 14 minutes left in the third. Xavier Ouellet headed to the dressing room. We are up to 17 octopi.

Zetterberg nearly gets his 3rd point of the game with a sneaky feed to Tatar. The top line nearly combines just after for another great chance.

I’ll feel a lot better if we can get a fourth here.

With 5:47, Helm goes to the box, and NJ gets another power play. The score is still 3-1.

Howard comes up big and the Wings kill it. 3:44 left.

Zetterberg nearly ends the suspense with a rocket from the slot, but Schneider keeps it at 3-1.

The Wings to go what is probably the last power play here with 3 minutes left.



Sheahan scored again. Like, for real.

I know, right?


And that’s the final. 4-1.


On behalf of everyone here at Winging it in Motown, thank you so much for spending this season with us. Thank you for reading our recaps and analysis, laughing at our jokes and commiserating with our rants.

It was a very hard year at times, but what made it worthwhile was our community here. From our writers and editors to our commenters, we form a family bound together by our love for the Red Wings.

I wish I could write something as eloquent as the quote that I used to open this recap, but I can’t. So, thank you.

While the doors of Joe Louis Arena will close one last time, the spirit that created so many eternal memories will carry through to the new arena, and we will make that place just as special. We leave behind the memories of the last 38 years but have the opportunities to create new ones that we will remember for the next several decades and beyond.

So again, from all of us: