Detroit Red Wings Game Analysis, After-Action Report for Friday Oct 31st: Detroit Red Wings 5 - Los Angeles Kings 2

Happy All Saints Day! The Red Wings put a Halloween scare into the Los Angeles Kings and trick-or-treated all over their asses. I don't know. It was a fun game to watch. 5-2 Wings.

Box Score Here

I don't have any complaints about the reffing in this game other than thinking Jordan Nolan should have gotten a major for how long he was looking at Darren Helm's numbers before boarding him. It might be helpful that the Wings got five power plays to only two for the Kings. Despite giving up a shorty, the Wings won the special teams battle with two PP goals. Despite this game essentially being a score effects derby for 50 minutes, Detroit led the shot count 35-30.

Jimmy Howard put up a .933 in this one and would still like to have both goals against back for different reasons. This was a good game. Jonathan Quick made a few good saves but got let down by his defense a bunch.

Guide to plus/minus adjustments

The Goals

1st Period 05:51 - Detroit Goal (PP): Gustav Nyquist (wrist shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Niklas Kronwall
Goose gets the scoring started on the PP with amazing tic-tac-toe passing. A puck out of play in the Kings' zone 49 seconds in to the power play brings the top unit out for the faceoff. Off the draw, Nyquist quickly jumps to the circle and pushes a loose puck back to Kronwall at the point off the boards. Carter pressures Kronwall, so a back-pass to Datsyuk defeats that aggressive move. Pavs brings it down the boards as Carter follows him now before throwing it back across to Kronwall, now playing the sole point in the middle in the 1-3-1 umbrella. Kronwall goes to the opposide side of the ice quickly, hitting Zetterberg with a pass in the bottom outside quadrant of the faceoff circle to Quick's right. Zetterberg immediately pushes the puck back into the slot between the hash marks where Nyquist puts it home. This is a beautiful setup exactly how the power play should work. I'm going to give Nyquist a half-plus for his work in making sure the Wings recover possession after the faceoff. On the net-front positioning, I'm going to give Abdelkader credit for a half-screen. I think the rapid passing beat Quick more than the split-second he had to look at Abby's ass while he was switching focus to track the puck, but I do think it had an affect on his ability to make the save.

GOAL-SAVED ADJUSTMENT: 1st Period 08:57 (Tomas Tatar): The Kings get a 3-on-2 rush against Smith and Tatar (covering for Kindl joining a dangerous rush), which almost leads to a rebound goal as Alec Martinez tries to put one in from the side which Howard stops. The puck comes loose in the crease with Clifford crashing,b tu Tatar immediately jumps into the open net-mouth and keeps it out until Jimmy can get the whistle. Tatar will get credit for saving a goal here.

1st Period 09:42 - Detroit Goal: Pavel Datsyuk (unassisted)
The Wings jump up 2-0 as Datsyuk does the Datsyuk thing and gets a fortunate bounce on a blocked pass after a steal. Drew Doughty steps up on Abdelkader at the Kings' blue line and forces Abby to dump it past him where Dwight King gets it at the half-wall chased by Datsyuk. Pavel immediately knocks it off his stick, causing the puck to roll around the boards behind the Kings' net. As Datsyuk and King chase it down and Zetterberg pinches down the opposite-side boards, Jake Muzzin makes a huge mistake in letting the puck by him. He's in position to step in front of the puck behind the net, but thinks King has a good beat on it and instead takes up position to try and set a pick. Unfortunately, King doesn't recover the puck in time to make the turn that sharp. King does get it just outside the trapezoid with Datsyuk still chasing him as he tries to turn up ice. Pavel gets the inside turn on him, lifts his stick from behind, and steals the puck before it gets to the top of the circle. This turns the play into a 2-on-1 against Jake Muzzin alone in front. Datsyuk tries to pass to a wide-open Zetterberg for what would have been an easy goal as Muzzin goes down to block this pass. Muzzin does block the pass, but he also accidentally redirects the puck off his skate into the net as Quick slides across his crease. Datsyuk will get a plus for the great forechecking and theft.

1st Period 11:44 - Detroit Goal (PP): Gustav Nyquist (wrist shot) from Niklas Kronwall and Pavel Datsyuk
Gus puts in what will be the game winner thanks to a familiar bounce off the friendly boards. The Wings win the faceoff and get the power play set up for a one-timer by Zetterberg in the circle. The puck goes over the net, but Datsyuk and Nyquist combine to aggressively recover it back up to Kronwall. Kronner hits Zetterberg at the top of the circle for an immediate cross-ice pass back to Nyquist with a bit of space to move forward and freeze the defense. Nyquist uses this space before dropping it back to Datsyuk. This passing and puck movement now has Doughty at the net-front with Abdelkader, Greene watching Nyquist in the slot, Carter on the weak side against Zetterberg, and Stoll drawing over towards Datsyuk at the top of the circle to Quick's right. With all four PKers too low, Datsyuk goes back to Kronwall at the point where he steps into the puck about ten feet below the blue line. Kronner's shot freezes Greene for a split-second as it misses just wide of the net. This gives Nyquist a chance to spin around Greene and be in perfect position to put in the rebound that comes off the boards back out front. Goose doesn't miss from here. This is another great power play setup and I'm going to give Datsyuk and Nyquist each a half-plus for their work in puck retrieval/drawing the PKers out of position. This time, Abdelkader will get a full screener's assist as well. Quick is leaning to his left to see around Abdelkader when the Kronwall shot happens. If Quick has an open look, he's in better position for the rebound.

1st Period 15:28 - Detroit Goal: Tomas Tatar (wrist shot) from Gustav Nyquist and Riley Sheahan
The first period scoring party continues as the Kid Line gets in on the action with a pretty forecheck. Tatar and Nyquist enter and try a timing shot/pass from the half-wall that gets blocked. Nyquist recovers and goes to Tatar in the corner. Tats immediately finds Sheahan at the top of the circle, who tries to feed it to Nyquist coming off the wall toward the net. The pass misses Nyquist and bounces down into the trapezoid behind Quick's left side. Regehr tries to trap Nyquist along the boards, but Goose deftly jumps around him and steals the puck, threatening to come out from behind the net to the far post. However, instead of doing this, Nyquist throws a backhander to the near post where Tatar is crashing to the net. Quick doesn't have his post sealed and Tatar jams it in on the short side for the goal. Great forechecking play by Nyquist and Tatar will earn each a plus.

2nd Period 10:41 - Los Angeles Goal: Alec Martinez (backhand) from Mike Richards and Trevor Lewis
The Kings break the shutout on a bit of a slow whistle and a dubbed shot that sneaks through Howard. The Kings get into the zone as Trevor Lewis backs to the Wings' blue line and puts it in around Ericsson stepping up. Alec Martinez gets to it first being chased by Nyquist as Richards takes a lane to the inside against Sheahan. Martinez has enough of a step on Nyquist that he is able to lean against him and come off the boards with the puck on his backhand. Just before he crosses behind the icing line, Martinez throws it on net hoping to get it past Howard, who stops the puck and is in the process of covering it when Richards jams the puck out from underneath Howard. The puck rolls out of the crease to the back door where Martinez completes his loop and dives to get his stick on the puck first, rolling it under Howard before he can get back into position. This is a slow-whistle goal, but the whistles have been pretty consistently slow all season. I'm going to clear the minuses for Kronwall, Tatar, and Ericsson. Riggy is the only player of those three to factor in at all, and his step-up at the blue line was appropriate. The concern is that Martinez turned on his jets before Nyquist did, which allowed him to help make this play happen. Nyquist will earn a minus for his coverage on Martinez while Sheahan will earn a half-minus for failing to eliminate Richards' stick from making the play to jab it out from under Howard.

GOAL-SAVED ADJUSTMENT: 2nd Period 17:55 (Drew Miller, Luke Glendening, Brendan Smith): Mike Richards gets a bouncing puck behind the net on the power play and centers it for Jeff Carter. Glendening has his stick in position to disrupt what would have been an easy goal on the doorstep. The loose puck gets to Muzzin jumping up from the point, but the combination of Glendening, Miller, and Smith create a wall in front of the still-scrambling Howard which blocks the Muzzin shot and keeps the puck out of the net. I'm going to give Glendening and Miller each a full plus while Smith will get a half. Both the forwards directly stop a puck from entering the net while Smith's presence helps them do their jobs.

3rd Period 01:48 - Los Angeles Goal (SH): Tyler Toffoli (wrist shot) from Robyn Regehr and Dwight King
LA keeps pushing to get back into the game and manages to do so off a brutal turnover by the Wings that turns back into their own net quickly. The Kings get a clear at 1:20 and the Wings never fully recover as an errant pass by Kronwall behind his own net under pressure gets past Nyquist and goes to Brown, who resets back to his own defense. After another dump-in from the Kings' blue line, Dwight King gets to the puck first on the half-wall of the Wings' zone and throws the puck at Howard. There's no immediate pressure as Howard holds, so the ref makes him play the puck. By the time he does, Toffoli is in the zone. Howard tries to drop it onto Zetterberg's stick, but Hank doesn't handle it cleanly and Toffoli steals, spinning in the corner and throwing the puck up ice for Regehr to step into it above the top of the circle. Howard is able to stop the puck, but the rebound kicks directly to Toffoli still at the bottom of the circle. Toffoli puts the rebound behind Howard while he's still in his kick-save position at the top of the crease. This is the failure of the entire power play unit getting outworked by the PKers, but Howard also made two key mistakes here (which evens things out to everybody keeping their minuses). The second dump-in that King gets to is one that Howard could and should have stopped behind his net. Kronwall was playing with the assumption this would happen, which is what allows King to get it. Second, Howard has to know that he's not going to gt a whistle here and play the puck immediately. The delay causes the confusion which allows everything else to happen.

3rd Period 18:50 - Detroit Goal (EN): Pavel Datsyuk (wrist shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader
Pavs salts it away with an empty netter after all three forwards touch the puck in the offensive zone. After an offensive zone faceoff, the Wings go into full prevent as the Kings get the puck deep and pull Quick again. As the puck goes from Zetterberg low in one corner to Smith in the other corner to Datsyuk up the half-wall, LA keeps the pressure on and gets the puck back as Datsyuk tries to go off the boards to avoid a pinch. Tanner Pearson keeps it in at the blue line and throws it toward the net. DeKeyser blocks it softly to keep it away from Carter in front of the net and then takes up position to let Smith get to the loose puck before King can come off the boards and get it. Smith sees a soft area up the middle that he dumps it into for Zetterberg to pick it up and turn up ice with Datsyuk and Abdelkader skating alongside him on the wings in what is a 3-on-3 neutral zone setup. Doughty is all the way back at the LA blue line, which gives enough space for the zone. Z goes to Abdelkader up the left wing side and Doughty goes down to block a potential shot from center ice. Abdelkader gets around him and fully recovers control deep in the Kings' zone with Pearson coming at him. From here, Abby throws it to Zetterberg in the middle of the ice. Jake Muzzin is directly in front of Zetterberg to block a shot on net, so Z redirects the puck perfectly onto Datsyuk's stick for the easy empty-netter. This is a good play by both Red Wings' defensemen to get the Wings out of the zone. Smith and DeKeyser will each earn a bonus plus.

The Penalties

1st Period 04:54 - Matt Greene (holding) against Tomas Tatar: The Wings get their first power play as a forecheck by Kindl and a short pinch by Smith keeps a puck in the LA zone. Tatar makes an aggressive move to get around Greene at the half-wall and has it pay off when Green decides to hold him against the boards rather than try to play defense. Tatar will earn a plus for this play.

1st Period 11:16 - Mike Richards (hooking) against Tomas Jurco: Richards goes to the box for Drew Doughty's sin. Darren Helm and Tomas Jurco get in very fast on a dumped-in puck that Quick plays behind his net. In the confusion of the broken breakout, Helm gets the puck on a wrap-around that gets blocked by Quick and almost put back in by Jurco, save for Doughty hooking him in front. The ref gives the penalty to Richards, who was tied up with Helm at the time. Helm and Jurco will each get a plus.

2nd Period 03:40 - Mike Richards (puck over glass): With the Wings up 2-0, there's only one way they're actually going to get a power play, and Mike Richards finds a way to make it happen because he's a leader. No adjustment on this play. Richards wasn't being pressured too hard. He just screwed up.

2nd Period 17:01 - Gustav Nyquist (tripping) against Mike Richards: Detroit takes their first penalty as Nyquist is backchecking against Richards coming down the right wing side. Richards protects the puck as Nyquist reaches to poke at it; as Richards starts his turn behind the net, Nyquist's stick gets in and takes his legs out. Minus for Nyquist.

2nd Period 18:59 - Danny DeKeyser (cross checking) against Dustin Brown: Two seconds before the end of the Nyquist penalty, Detroit takes another one as Danny DeKeyser cross-checks Brown behind the net. A dubbed shot by Martinez and recovery by Richards almost gets Williams a goal, but the puck bounces off the traffic in front and goes back behind the net. Brown dumps Miller back there as they fightfor the puck and DeKeyser takes the opportunity to chop Brown a bit high. Brown falls from the contact and DK sits. This will be a minus for DK. I don't know whether to award Glendening a minus on this play as well because I can't see the back ref. Glendening dumps Williams in front with an obvious trip, but I feel that one isn't called because the DK penalty gets the whistle instead..

3rd Period 00:40 - Jarret Stoll (face off violation): Stoll ends the LA power play by using his glove to win a faceoff, which you can't do. No adjustment.

3rd Period 02:29 - Danny DeKeyser (tripping on a breakaway) against Dustin Brown: The Kings get a chance to score their second shorthanded goal on the same power play when Dustin Brown gets behind the defense and draws a trip. Howard stops the penalty shot so it's no harm done, but the guys responsible are going to get minuses. Tatar is the one who turns it over on the neutral zone drop pass that the Wings consistently use and DeKeyser either has to not trip or he just needs to let Brown go with how far behind he is (since two breakaway opportunities is less-ideal than just one). Both Tatar and DeKeyser will get minuses.

3rd Period 03:53 - Jordan Nolan (boarding) against Darren Helm and Jonathan Ericsson (roughing) against Jordan Nolan: Darren Helm gets plastered into the boards by Nolan and Ericsson steps in to stand up for his teammate. Somehow, it's all even on penalties when all is said and done. No adjustment. I'm ok with Riggy doing this here.

3rd Period 08:22 - Drew Doughty (hooking) against Pavel Datsyuk: Pavs steals a puck that Doughty gets caught in his own feet and earns a power play when Doughty hooks him in a panic. It's not a very strong call, but Datsyuk will get a plus for drawing it.

Total Adjustments

Player GP Official +/- Adjusted +/- G+ Cov- Turn- Plty- Plty+ Chg+ Chg- PP+Lost PK-Clear GA-Clear GSaved+ Adj Diff
Justin Abdelkader 1 1 1 0
Henrik Zetterberg 1 1 1 0
Pavel Datsyuk 1 1 3.5 1.5 1 2.5
Tomas Tatar 1 3 1 -1 1 1 1 3
Riley Sheahan 1 -0.5 -0.5 -0.5
Tomas Jurco 1 1 1 1
Gustav Nyquist 1 -1 -1 2 -1 -1 0
Darren Helm 1 1 1 1
Andrej Nestrasil 1 0 0
Joakim Andersson 1 0 0
Luke Glendening 1 1 1 1
Drew Miller 1 1 1 1
Niklas Kronwall 1 -2 -1 1 1
Jonathan Ericsson 1 1 1 1
Brendan Smith 1 2 3.5 1 0.5 1.5
Danny DeKeyser 1 2 1 1 -2 -1
Kyle Quincey 1 0 0
Jakub Kindl 1 1 1 0
Player Screener's Assists
Johan Franzen 2
Justin Abdelkader 2.5
Luke Glendening 1

Full Season Chart Here

Possession Metrics

Even-strength Corsi numbers provided thanks to via

Name Pos Corsi Rel% Corsi% Corsi+/- CorsiFor CorsiAgn CorsiFor60 CorsiAgn60
Jimmy.Howard G 57.75 11 41 30 52.28 38.25
Jakub.Kindl D 6.83 61.11 8 22 14 62.34 39.67
Jonathan.Ericsson D 10.8 64.29 8 18 10 58.83 32.68
Andrej.Nestrasil L 20.76 75 6 9 3 63.84 21.28
Tomas.Jurco R 20.76 75 6 9 3 63.91 21.3
Tomas.Tatar L 14.2 68.75 6 11 5 61.35 27.89
Darren.Helm C 20.76 75 6 9 3 61.31 20.44
Henrik.Zetterberg L 10.1 65 6 13 7 70.96 38.21
Justin.Abdelkader R 5.9 61.9 5 13 8 67.63 41.62
Pavel.Datsyuk C 5.9 61.9 5 13 8 72.06 44.34
Riley.Sheahan C 1.95 59.09 4 13 9 57.85 40.05
Danny.Dekeyser D -0.86 57.14 3 12 9 40.89 30.67
Niklas.Kronwall D -1.81 56.52 3 13 10 47.13 36.25
Gustav.Nyquist R -2.94 55.56 2 10 8 51.43 41.14
Brendan.Smith D -16.61 48.39 -1 15 16 51.33 54.75
Kyle.Quincey D -19.09 40 -1 2 3 35.47 53.2
Drew.Miller L -17.75 45 -2 9 11 34.67 42.38
Joakim.Andersson R -24.71 40 -4 8 12 31.02 46.53
Luke.Glendening C -29.52 35.29 -5 6 11 24.56 45.03

With only five defensemen for most of the game, the rest of the blueliners handled their extra minutes very well. The line matchups were pretty straightforward in this game, so the Kings' most-dangerous scoring line was faced with Datsyuk and Zetterberg. Mike Richards' line got to see a lot of the Kid Line. Helm faced Jordan Nolan and Dwight King. The shut-down match was Babs putting Glendening out against the Brown-Stoll-Williams group. You'll notice the fourt line was the only one who lost their matchup, but overall they kept the depth scoring line for the Kings to a respectably low Corsi pace.

Name Pos Faceoff % Faceoffs Won Faceoffs Lost Off ZS % OffZoneStart NeuZoneStart DefZoneStart
Kyle.Quincey D 40 0 0 100 1 3 0
Tomas.Tatar L 40 0 0 83.33 5 6 1
Riley.Sheahan C 41.67 5 7 83.33 5 6 1
Gustav.Nyquist R 40 0 0 83.33 5 6 1
Jakub.Kindl D 40 0 0 81.82 9 10 2
Henrik.Zetterberg L 40 0 0 77.78 7 3 2
Justin.Abdelkader R 40 0 0 77.78 7 3 2
Pavel.Datsyuk C 58.33 7 5 77.78 7 3 2
Brendan.Smith D 40 0 0 66.67 10 8 5
Jimmy.Howard G 40 0 0 63.33 19 23 11
Danny.Dekeyser D 40 0 0 60 6 7 4
Niklas.Kronwall D 40 0 0 60 6 7 4
Andrej.Nestrasil L 40 0 0 50 2 4 2
Tomas.Jurco R 40 0 0 50 2 4 2
Darren.Helm C 87.5 7 1 50 2 4 2
Jonathan.Ericsson D 40 0 0 46.15 6 11 7
Drew.Miller L 40 0 0 45.45 5 10 6
Joakim.Andersson R 25 1 3 45.45 5 10 6
Luke.Glendening C 52.94 9 8 45.45 5 10 6

Detroit had the advantage in offensive zone faceoff opportunities 55-45, so there weren't a lot of D-zone starts to go around, but Babcock was happy to let the fourth line soak those up again so he could keep the offensively-dangerous guys in the offensive zone more often.

Check out more from, including the visualized shift chart here.

Final Say

Eyeball-wise this one looked more to me like a creep in bad habits than it looked like a score-effects desperate team. The Wings had everything go right for them in the first and played as well as we've seen all season through that time. Outside of the first 20, they probably could have turned this one into a bloodbath except for just a little bit of hesitation cuteness. The top line is a ton of fun to watch and I thought the defenders played really well too. More games like this, please.

Corsi Timeline from