Detroit Red Wings Game Analysis, After-Action Report for Sunday Nov 30th: Detroit Red Wings 5 - Vancouver Canucks 3

Detroit and Vancouver both put their three-game winning streaks on the line for a Sunday afternoon tilt in Detroit. By the end of it, Ryan Miller's 150+ minute shutout streak was gone, as was the Canucks' winning streak. The Wings jumped out to an early lead and then held on against an unending Canucks' comeback attempt, finally finishing the game at 5-3.

Box Score Here

I thought the flow of this game was done pretty well and I'm outright shocked that a Sunday afternoon game that was the only one on the entire NHL schedule which was officiated by Tim Peel didn't turn into a hornswaggle. Detroit went 2-for-4 on the power play while the Canucks went 1-for-3. Shots were 33-30 in favor of Vancouver.

Jimmy Howard was strong in this game with rebound control and facing up against shooters. He faced a lot of shots, but the number of incredible saves was somewhat low for as many of the shots as he faced. There was an incredible cross-crease slide stop that got overshadowed by the Canucks' third goal seconds later. Ryan Miller played well enough, but the Wings were just too good for him.

Guide to plus/minus adjustments

The Goals

1st Period 03:15 - Detroit Goal: Niklas Kronwall (wrist shot) from Jonathan Ericsson and Henrik Zetterberg
Niklas Kronwall puts the Wings on the board first with a snipe from the circle on a good pinch. The play starts with Kronwall holding the puck behind his own net while both teams change. Eventually he comes out from behind the net to hit Datsyuk in stride up the left wing side for a speedy zone entry to the outside which gets him a shot from just above the circle that Miller blocks off to the corner. Zetterberg picks it up, but is turned away from getting it back to the front of the net. Z takes it behind the net to the opposite corner before going up to Ericsson at the point. Riggy wastes no time going cross-ice to Kronwall who sees a lane all the way into the circle created by a bad coverage angle from Henrik Sedin. With Abdelkader and Datsyuk tying up defenders at the net-front, Kronwall walks it in and fires inside the far post. This is a pretty play set up for the Wings, but neither Abby nor Datsyuk are screening and the biggest part of it is that Sedin and Vrbata both neglected to cover Kronwall. No adjustment.

1st Period 11:16 - Detroit Goal (PP): Gustav Nyquist (wrist shot) from Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen
Goose makes it 2-0 early on the power play with some amazing passing to find him a wide-open net out front. The faceoff bounces slowly to Edler low to the inside of the circle and he tries to sweep it out. Fortunately, the slow bounce allows Nyquist to get his stick in and deflect the clearing attempt up to Franzen at the point. Daniel Sedin pressures so Franzen goes to Kronwall in the middle. Henrik Sedin gets aggressive and tries to get on Kronwall immediately, but that pressure is beaten when Kronwall goes back to Franzen (Daniel glided to high center after the Franzen pass, leaving him enough space). Franzen takes control and goes cross-ice down to Zetterberg on the outside of the faceoff circle. As Tanev walks out to Zetterberg, he leaves his defensive partner Edler to watch both Abdelkader at the net-front and Nyquist at the back door. Daniel Sedin still has his stick pointed up ice in the lane between Z and Mule, so he's not able to block the pass from Zetterberg to Nyquist. Goose has no trouble slamming it into the wide-open net from there and it's 2-0. I'm going to give Nyquist a half-plus on making sure the faceoff doesn't end up getting cleared. Beautiful setup here to take advantage of the Sedins' aggression.

2nd Period 02:37 - Vancouver Goal (PP): Linden Vey (wrist shot) unassisted
The Canucks get a power play goal on a bang-bang turnover that finds its way to Vey out front for the quick put-away. After an initial clear, Vrbata gets it back into the zone around an aggressive blue line step-up from Kronwall, firing a puck on net that Howard blocks. Glendening takes it to the corner, but gets immediately double-teamed and loses the puck. Sedin resets it to Edler at the top of the zone and he moves it to the far side half-wall to set up a cycle there. Henrik Sedin gets a puck below the Wings' goal and throws it on the backhand up for a centering attempt that Kronwall blocks. With Daniel Sedin (the original intended recipient of this pass) bearing down immediately, Kronwall throws it farther up the middle in a hurry. Unfortunately for Kronner, he throws it directly between Glendening and Miller right onto the tape of Vey, who immediately fires it into the net. A bit of bad luck, but Kronwall will earn a minus for this play.

2nd Period 14:24 - Detroit Goal (PP): Pavel Datsyuk (Luca Sbisa shot) from Tomas Tatar and Jakub Kindl
The Wings get an ugly power play goal as a Vancouver defender scores into his own net, but hey it counts. The PP gets stymied for 1:35 before Kindl gets it back into the zone on a pass to Weiss entering on the left wing. A good pass to Datsyuk at the dot nearly sets up a beauty until Pavel mishandles it. Bieksa sweeps it away from Pavel behind the net for Sheahan to recover. Here, Sheahan holds off Sbisa behind one post before moving away from him and then holding off Bieksa at the wall behind the other post. With Bieksa holding him up and Higgins coming in to reach for the puck, Sheahan retains control and throws a backhand pass up front where Kindl is jumping in. Bonino and Sbisa both jump into Kindl's shooting lane down low, so he pulls down from the one-timer and instead makes a back-pass to Tatar in the slot. Tatar shoots it back across the grain into Sbisa. The puck bounces off the defender over to the side of the net. Datsyuk gets his stick on it to keep it in the net-front area as Sbisa slides through, but he can't get a clean shot off with people starting to scramble to his side. As Datsyuk battles to free the puck, Sbisa turns and slaps at it in an attempt to clear. Sbisa's slapping ends up catching the puck squarely and putting it between Bieksa's legs and through Ryan Miller for the goal. In all this, I'm going to give Riley Sheahan a plus for the incredible board work which sets the defensive breakdown which makes this happen. Kindl will also get a half-plus for two very smart plays entering the zone and then passing to Tatar in the slot.

3rd Period 12:26 - Vancouver Goal: Shawn Matthias (tip-in) from Yannick Weber and Linden Vey
The Canucks pull within one as a point shot changes direction twice to get through Howard. Vey comes in to pick up a scrambled faceoff just outside the Wings' blue line as he crosses the ice and dumps a puck in on the backhand. The puck takes a strange bounce on this dump-in and Vey gets it back at the half-wall, immediately passing it back to Weber at the point. Weber walks it a few feet to the inside to allow traffic to get set up before firing a slapper into traffic. This pays off as the puck redirects first off Stephen Weiss' stick and then off Jakub Kindl's skate to find its way in. This is a tough-luck play for the Wings. Weiss and Kindl will keep their minuses for the puck getting through them, but DeKeyser, and Franzen will be cleared while Helm's minus will be halved (he doesn't lose the faceoff cleanly, but he does lose it). Weiss will also pick up an extra half-minus for his part of the Canucks taking over possession on the faceoff. [edit: this goal was originally written up with credit having gone to Weber. I still have not seen an angle which definitively shows Matthias getting a tip on this puck, but it doesn't matter from the perspective of how the adjustments on this play will be made]

3rd Period 13:36 - Detroit Goal: Danny DeKeyser (wrist shot) from Riley Sheahan and Tomas Jurco
Detroit regains their two-goal lead on a seeing-eye wrister from the point that gets through a self-screen by the Canucks just 70 seconds later. Sheahan wins an offensive zone faceoff and Tatar gets it to DeKeyser at the point, who dumps it to the corner for Sheahan to pick back up. Sheahan pushes to Jurco at the other corner, who feints carrying it up the boards before turning back the other way. Sbisa knocks Jurco down behind the net, but the puck rolls to Sheahan still in the near-side corner. Sheahan drags Bieksa partway up the boards before passing to DeKeyser at the point. DK uses the space afforded him by Sheahan's move freezing Burrows in order to take a step to the inside of the ice and throwing the puck at the net. Bonino happens to be in the middle of the ice when DK's shot comes by. Instead of blocking it, Bonino jumps and has the puck go right between his legs. Miller doesn't pick it up through this screen on time and it's in the net. I'm going to give Sheahan and Jurco each a half-plus for this work on the play and I'll go ahead and give Nick Bonino a screener's assist that I'm not going to add to the table although I should because it's funny.

3rd Period 16:10 - Vancouver Goal: Lindon Vey (lucky bounce) from Shawn Matthias and Brad Richardson
The Canucks pull their goalie early and get a goal after a series of centering attempts finally leads to a bounce for Vey. This play starts with the puck entering the zone 1:25 before the goal is scored, and it never leaves during that period. During this time, the Canucks cycle very well and get a bit of help by a broken Johan Franzen stick before they get Miller off for the extra skater. The stickless Franzen and the stick of Franzen help to prevent a chance to clear while the Canucks get a very good scoring chance that hits the post. Franzen is able to get a replacement stick while the Canucks restart the cycle down low off the post shot, but the defense is still reeling from the extended time. Finally, an Edler/Tanev crossover at the top has Franzen and Helm focusing on staying in the shooting lanes while Kindl, DeKeyser, and Weiss busy themselves with three Canucks players in that area. Edler throws it down to Richardson standing on the icing line about halfway between the boards and the trapezoid line. Richardson immediately centers where Matthias puts it on net. Howard is huge and pushes the rebound to the corner. Tanev is able to recover and take it back to the point where he finds a lane back to Richardson in the same corner, although on a better shooting angle. Kindl heads out to keep him from walking any closer while trying to keep his stick in the lane, but Richardson throws it back in the middle for Matthias again. Howard is again able to make the save, but this time, Vey is coming up the back door side to play it back in. He kicks the puck back on net and it hits off Howard's skate and into the net. After a lengthy review, the officials decide that either it wasn't enough of a kicking motion or that Vey got his stick on it after the kick and it's ruled a good goal. I'm not going to clear any minuses here, but there's not a ton of fault to go here either. Franzen's broken stick hurts here, but the extra skater hurts more. Overall, I'm just going to give Kindl a half-minus on the failure to block the cross-ice lane from Richardson two times.

3rd Period 19:10 - Detroit Goal (EN): Pavel Datsyuk (shuffleboard magic) unassisted
The Wings ice the game away as Datsyuk intercepts a pass high in the zone and slides it all the way down the ice into an open net. After an icing faceoff, the Wings are able to battle and get it out of the zone with Smith hustling to get to a loose puck after his first clearing attempt is blocked. Henrik Sedin dumps the puck into the zone where Daniel races to get it between the deep corner and half-wall coverages by the Wings. As Helm holds his ground up the boards and Kronwall steps up to Daniel, the D-Sedin tries a blind pass to the far point. Instead of Bieksa, Sedin finds Pavel Datsyuk intercepting his pass in the middle of the zone. Bieksa steps up to keep Datsyuk inside the zone, but Pavel responds by feathering the puck up the ice. Datsyuk's perfectly-feathered icing-avoiding clear is too perfect though and the puck outraces everybody into the open net just as the back linesman is calling off a potential icing thanks to Darren Helm being the closest to the puck. I'm going to give Brendan Smith a half-plus for the good work earning the line change here. Datsyuk will get a plus for the good defensive positioning which destroys the Canucks' comeback and hits the empty net.

The Penalties

1st Period 04:02 - Shawn Matthias (hooking) against Brendan Smith: Matthias chases Smith behind his own net on a dump-in gets too aggressive trying to separate Smith from the puck and hooks him. Smith will get a plus for the good body position and hustle.

1st Period 11:06 - Alex Burrows (high sticking) against Jimmy Howard: Bonino gets a shot from a good area on Howard that Burrows follows up by chopping Howard in the head. No adjustment.

1st Period 12:26 - Jonathan Ericsson (slashing) against Radim Vrbata: The dreaded stick-slash penalty returns as Ericsson breaks Vrbata's lumber and sits. This one is actually a good call. Riggy is in bad position and he chops down hard enough to break it. Minus for Ericsson.

1st Period 14:52 - Kyle Quincey (holding the stick) and Derek Dorsett (slashing): In the continuation of the play after the expiration of a Vancouver penalty, Quincey and Dorsett get into a bit of net-front battling that eventually gets out of hand and ends up getting them both sent. No adjustment on this one. It's probably both a little unlucky for Quincey that they both went, but it's also good for him that it got the whistle on a play that was getting increasingly dangerous.

2nd Period 01:59 - Kyle Quincey (hooking) against Kevin Bieksa: The Canucks' D-Man enters the zone with a half-step on Quincey, who reaches out to slow him down with a one-handed hook. Bieksa makes sure the ref sees it and Quincey sits. Quincey will get a minus. He doesn't particularly have to worry about Bieksa this much, so the hook is unnecessary, even if Bieksa makes sure it's a call.

2nd Period 03:22 - Brendan Smith (cross-checking) against Jannik Hansen: Smith gets to sit as he goes to clear the net-front after a dangerous chance by Hansen. This is kind of a weird play as Hansen had just tied up with Kindl to get this chance and there were probably a few non-called penalties between those two players that led to this. Ultimately, I'm going to give both Smith and Kindl a minus. Smith's cross-check coupled with his failure to hold the zone just before the Hansen/Kindl battle leads to this. Kindl abandons good position on Hansen as they're recovering the puck and is just lucky the penalty wasn't on him. Since he helped create the penalty, he'll be punished accordingly.

2nd Period 04:31 - Lindon Vey (interference) against Justin Abdelkader: As Abby watches the slot on the PK while Vancouver holds it in the low corner, Vey comes in and gives him a shove in the back to set a pick for a play that's developing. The Refs call it immediately as what Vey does is interference. No adjustment here. This one is a pretty ticky-tack penalty to begin with and it's definitely not a drawn call.

2nd Period 12:34 - Ryan Stanton (hooking) against Tomas Jurco: The Wings are forechecking in the zone as Jurco steals it from Stanton and establishes good body position to shield the puck. Stanton answers by hooking Jurco and going away to a glass case for a little while. Jurco will get a plus.

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
Stephen Weiss 1 -2 -2.5 -0.5 -0.5
Johan Franzen 1 -2 -1 1 1
Tomas Tatar 1 1 1 0
Riley Sheahan 1 1 2.5 1.5 1.5
Tomas Jurco 1 1 2.5 0.5 1 1.5
Gustav Nyquist 1 0.5 0.5 0.5
Darren Helm 1 -1 -0.5 0.5 0.5
Pavel Datsyuk 1 2 3 1 1
Luke Glendening 1 0 0
Drew Miller 1 1 1 0
Niklas Kronwall 1 2 1 -1 -1
Jonathan Ericsson 1 1 0 -1 -1
Brendan Smith 1 0.5 0.5 -1 1 0.5
Danny DeKeyser 1 1 1 1
Kyle Quincey 1 1 0 -1 -1
Jakub Kindl 1 -2 -3 0.5 -0.5 -1 -1
Player Screener's Assists
Justin Abdelkader 5
Luke Glendening 2.5
Johan Franzen 2
Darren Helm 1.5
Drew Miller 1.5
Riley Sheahan 1
Joakim Andersson 0.5

Full Season Chart Here

Possession Metrics

Even-strength Corsi numbers provided thanks to via

Name Pos Corsi Rel% Corsi% Corsi+/- CorsiFor CorsiAgn CorsiFor60 CorsiAgn60
Brendan.Smith D 12.45 61.54 6 16 10 70.85 44.28
Riley.Sheahan C 16.67 66.67 5 10 5 61.49 30.74
Jakub.Kindl D 10 60 5 15 10 86.89 57.92
Jimmy.Howard G 53.09 5 43 38 56.26 49.72
Tomas.Tatar L 11.73 62.5 4 10 6 57.19 34.31
Pavel.Datsyuk C 6.2 57.14 4 16 12 66.94 50.2
Tomas.Jurco R 4.8 56.52 3 13 10 81.04 62.34
Darren.Helm C 3.7 55.56 3 15 12 57.82 46.25
Kyle.Quincey D 4.8 56.52 3 13 10 53.58 41.21
Johan.Franzen L 6.28 57.89 3 11 8 55.89 40.65
Henrik.Zetterberg L 3.25 55.17 3 16 13 69.86 56.76
Justin.Abdelkader R 6.16 58.33 2 7 5 46.62 33.3
Stephen.Weiss R -0.18 52.94 1 9 8 54.09 48.08
Danny.Dekeyser D -7.77 48.48 -1 16 17 55.36 58.82
Gustav.Nyquist R -11.63 43.75 -2 7 9 38.47 49.47
Jonathan.Ericsson D -10.27 46.88 -2 15 17 46 52.13
Niklas.Kronwall D -10.21 46.15 -2 12 14 41.46 48.37
Drew.Miller L -13.81 42.86 -3 9 12 48.65 64.86
Luke.Glendening C -29.96 29.41 -7 5 12 29.39 70.53

The Sedins saw a lot of the Datsyuk-Zetterberg group and essentially split possession on that setup as both lines put up a decent amount of events. This left Sheahan's line to face off against the Bonino group in a matchup they won. Helm saw the most of the Shawn Matthias forward line, but made up his overall positive possession numbers against different players (like Horvat). Glendening's line was posted up against Horvat's fourth line, taking a slight advantage.

Name Pos Off ZS % OffZoneStart NeuZoneStart DefZoneStart
Tomas.Jurco R 70 7 3 3
Pavel.Datsyuk C 66.67 6 7 3
Henrik.Zetterberg L 66.67 6 6 3
Niklas.Kronwall D 66.67 4 8 2
Jakub.Kindl D 63.64 7 5 4
Justin.Abdelkader R 60 3 3 2
Danny.Dekeyser D 56.25 9 6 7
Tomas.Tatar L 55.56 5 3 4
Jimmy.Howard G 53.12 17 19 15
Riley.Sheahan C 50 5 3 5
Kyle.Quincey D 50 6 5 6
Stephen.Weiss R 50 2 7 2
Drew.Miller L 50 4 3 4
Luke.Glendening C 50 4 3 4
Gustav.Nyquist R 44.44 4 4 5
Jonathan.Ericsson D 44.44 4 8 5
Brendan.Smith D 40 4 6 6
Johan.Franzen L 40 2 7 3
Darren.Helm C 30 3 8 7

As a team, the Wings had more offensive zone starts than defensive zone starts. Without Abdelkader in the third, there was quite a bit of shuffling, but it's interesting to see which guys got the most defensive zone starts.

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

Final Say

The dominant Wings' team of the first period was a ton of fun to watch. The Datsyuk-Zetterberg line is always a blast to watch and I was really excited to see how well the Sheahan-Tatar-Nyquist trio handled 2nd line duties. Weiss looked faster than usual while Franzen and Helm keps up well on that line. I can't get enough of the extra dimentsion that Tomas Jurco is bringing to the fourth line. Defensively, the Ericsson/Kronwall pairing held their own and jumped up well. The Quincey-DeKeyser pair looked solid in their own zone, and the Smith/Kindl pairing looked better than the third pair has looked since Smith was out of the lineup.

Corsi Timeline from