We finally hit 2018 and the Red Wings currently sit tied for 7th worst in the league, but also find themselves 7 points out of a playoff spot. Regardless, it’s time to tank and a loss to the Senators would help their position in the standings as Ottawa sits 5 points behind the Red Wings. Detroit is looking to win 3-straight games since January 2017 (this is a real stat!!!!). Meanwhile, the Sens have lost 5 of their last 6. Let’s do it.
Mantha started off as an extra forward with Frk as he made his return from injury. Also, a lot of red seats to start at puck drop, we’ll watch that throughout the game as FSD couldn’t get over the atmosphere at LCA the past 2 games in the pregame show.
The Tatar-AA-Larkin line got going early. Heavy zone pressure and a lot of chances to start, but no goals. Overall good start by the Red Wings too. Karlsson had a clearing attempt hit Larkin in the face and he quickly went off after trying to finish the play, he came back a-okay. Pretty boring game up to that point, 1st TV timeout.
First big chance of the game went to Anthony Manta. AA and Mantha sprung a 2-on-1 with Mantha on the receiving end only to put it right into the bread basket of Anderson, real tough stretch for the kid, sheesh. Senators started putting on some pressure, but no real solid chances as we hit the 2nd TV timeout.
Right out of the timeout, the Red Wings struck first. AA was double-shifting with Frk and Mantha which resulted in a chance in front that AA buried on the backhand top shelf. 1-0 Red Wings. The Senators began to pick up their play offensively and it led to a lot of zone time after the Mantha goal. The Wings seemed to be comfortable with a 1-0 lead in the first as it was all Senators before the final TV timeout.
Bertuzzi really stood out in the 1st, he’s looked good in his 2nd stint with the Red Wings this year, hence why he’s staying put. Senators had their best chance of the game so far with 4 minutes left in the 1st. Bobby Ryan battled in front of Howard and no-look backhanded one off the post. The puck rolled through the entire crease before Howard made the save. The teams exchanged chances for the last couple of minutes before the period concluded.
Score: 1-0 DET
Shots: 14-11 OTT
Another slow start to a period as the teams just felt each other out the first few minutes. Athanasiou almost added another highlight reel goal to his name. He split through 3 Senators at the blue line only to be robbed by Anderson’s left pad. Dion Phaneuf decided to be Dion Phaneuf around the net and it led to a 4-on-4 after Green nailed Phaneuf nicely. Joke was on Dion as he had to leave the game for some repairs after the scrum.
Larkin continued to look like the Red Wings best player as he nearly set up a goal to Abdelkader in the high slot only to have his shot be denied by Anderson. Athanasiou followed it up with yet ANOTHER chance on a breakaway only to be stopped as well. Then Mantha and AA almost go tic-tac-toe to a wide open Marty Frk who couldn’t lift the puck and was stopped by Anderson’s pad right in front of the goal. The youth is on display tonight, 1st TV timeout.
Somehow the Senators have outshot the Red Wings up to this point, but it really has been all Detroit outside of a few minutes in the 1st Period. Bertuzzi was denied by the post as he continued to look for that first career goal. The top line of Gus-Z-Bert again has looked good, but still the Red Wings can’t find that 2nd goal. Ottawa took a too-many-men penalty and we’ll have our first PP of the game, 2nd TV timeout.
Aaaaaaand about 10 seconds into the PP, Green took a holding penalty. The Senators did an incredible job killing off their penalty as the Red Wings sat back and the Senators killed an entire 1:40 before Detroit finally touched the puck. Absolutely pathetic sequence from the Red Wings. 4-on-4 for only 7 seconds now before a Senators PP, just unbelievable. Red Wings PK did do a nice job killing the penalty after this as Ottawa wasn’t able to get set up once. Final TV timeout of Period 2.
Well compared to normal matchups between Ottawa-Detroit, this game has been decently exciting up to this point. Again, that’s just comparing it to how these teams usually play one another. Bertuzzi missed another chance at his first goal after a Dekeyser shot trickled right by his stick as he stood wide open on the back post.
Another Red Wings breakaway, this time by Tatar, who was denied by the post after a nice lead pass from Larkin. This is starting to feel as if it won’t end well for the Red Wings (which I’d be happy about) the longer they let the Sens hang around. Both teams had a quality chance in the final minutes of the period, but again no dice. Athanasiou’s goal has still been it so far.
Score: 1-0 DET
Shots: 25-21 OTT
Time to buckle up folks. <—— Wrote this about 2 minutes before it actually happened. Helm turned it over in front, wide open was Ryan Dzingel who tied the game just 39 seconds into the 3rd. #$?!%. 1-1. Red Wings challenged for goalie interference, but there was hardly anything there so I am confused. The game slowed down in the early stages of the 3rd after the Dzingel goal. Am impressed with those at LCA, place seems alive and fuller than most nights. Athanasiou alive once again, as he started a 2-on-1 and 3-on-2. Frk was high-sticked on the 3-on-2, but no call from the stripes. Red Wings had been by far the much better team up to this point, but still the score remained tied at the 1st TV timeout of the 3rd.
Athanasiou AGAIN got a step on the defense for ANOTHER breakaway and.... you guessed it, stopped by Anderson. HOWEVER, Phaneuf (haha) took him down from behind and a penalty shot was awarded. Guess what happened next? Saved by Anderson. Athanasiou has scored tonight yet can’t buy a goal. Unbelievable. The Senators almost took the lead after a trailing Karlsson got a nice pass across from Mark Stone, but Howard robbed EK65 with a sliding glove save. 2nd TV timeout.
Stand-still as the clock ticked down to the end of the Period, still was all Red Wings for the most part but the score remained 1-1. Karlsson again came oh-so-close as a quick slap shot off a Howard clearing attempt rang off the outside of the post. The last 8 minutes or so were about as boring as you could make the final 8 minutes of a 3rd period in a tie game. With 30 seconds left Helm had 2 Grade-A chances in front off a 2-on-1, but no goal. Red Wings buzzed more. Dekeyser hit the goal post on a rocket from the point and wow did the LCA wake up. So close. No dice. Overtime.
Sens are 1-3 in OT this year, Red Wings are 0-6. My money is on Athanasiou or Karlsson to win it (shockingly). RIGHT OFF THE FACE OFF. 6 SECONDS IN. ATHANASIOU ON HIS FIFTH BREAKAWAY. GAME OVER!!!!!!! I guess I do like winning because that was a real life reaction folks. 3rd-in-a-row for the Red Wings for the first time since January 2017. What do you know?
Score: 2-1 DET
Shots: 35-34 DET