Game Recap: Red Wings 1 - Hurricanes 3

Good riddance, Carolina Hurricanes. Tonight marked the third, and final meeting between the Hurricanes and Red Wings. After being humiliated in our last meeting, the Red Wings looked to take the season series, and also gain their mojo back.

1st Period:

The Wings came out looking a bit better than recently against the Hurricanes. They generated some chances, even though they weren't able to get a shot off during the man advantage. Both Petr Mrazek and Cam Ward were sharp, but Mrazek displayed masterful puck-handling skills (as per usual), which kept the Canes' "dump-and-chase" ineffective.

We did see Tomas Tatar's first ever fight, which was weird. Funny thing is he got two minutes for roughing, and actually drew a penalty:

All-in-all, Detroit did a better job with in-zone coverage, and kept Carolina honest. Alexey Marchenko had a great play (sort of, considering he let Staal behind him) in the closing seconds of the first period to breakup a breakaway chance:

It took me a bit to get the footage for it, but here's a really great play Marchenko made in his own zone. Doesn't get much better than this:

After 20 minutes, the score is tied at 0-0, Wings have the slight edge in shots (!!) 9-8, and SAT (shot attempts) are tied knotted at 13 a piece.

2nd Period:

Again, Wings come out playing much better with their zone coverage. Dylan Larkin had a fantastic chance early on, but whiffed on the shot. Standout player, again, was Alexey Marchenko who continues to make smart defensive plays in his own zone:

The first goal of the game came in favor of Carolina, and the only player you can put the blame on is Petr Mrazek. We know he loves to play the puck, and isn't afraid to get risky. Well, he got a bit TOO risky in this instance, and it cost him in a very, very ugly way:

I dunno, man. That was bad. Went a little poopoo there. But it didn't stop him from playing the puck. He kept on leaving his crease and making plays identical like that, minus the goal. Gotta tip your hat to the kid, he's got some real brass. After that goal, I felt like the life had been sucked out of me. I kept thinking "I swear, if this game is lost 1-0, I'm going to lay face down on my floor and let the dog just sniff me for a few hours." Thankfully, Jakub Kindl was able to even it up with a goal, assisted by Tomas Jurco (YAY!.) At first I thought it was a tip-in by Tomas Jurco, so I shouted with glee, but no tip. The goal was Kindl's:

The Wings are definitely moving their feet in this game. Controlling the puck, skating well, and moving it up and down the ice. Jonathan Ericsson had a couple of good defensive plays to break up the Hurricanes while they were trying to setup. At the end of 40, we're tied at 1-1. Wings still outshooting the Canes, 19-7. SAT has shifted in favor of Detroit, 30-29. Bit of a worry for me is that Carolina has owned the faceoff at 69% (nice, but not really.) Carolina starts the 3rd on the power-play after Justin Abdelkader went off for boarding.

3rd Period:

The Red Wings were able to sustain possession throughout the entire game, but it just wasn't enough. I don't know what to say, but I'll make it quick.

They let up a goal to make it 2-1, on an unassisted screen-shot from Ron Hainsey. From there, the Hurricanes trapped. The Red Wings couldn't answer to tie the game, and let up an empty net goal late in the 3rd. Sealing yet another disappointing loss. The officiating was bad, but I can't convince myself that the Red Wings would have flourished to make anything happen with the power-play. In a game where they looked so much better with coverage, and puck control. They lost, and it was really, really soul-sucking.

I don't know, gang.

They're now neck-and-neck with the Boston Bruins in the standings. Luke Glendening on the 3rd line needs to stop. They're spending too much time in their own zone, chasing the puck, and not entering the offensive zone with efficiency. In a game where they made so many smart plays. Two unassisted goals by the Hurricanes put this one away. It's sad, it's a bit pathetic, but again, they need to get angry and start changing their ways.

Jeff Blashill has his work cut out for him, as the teams coming up are going to give them a handful. Thankfully, we're almost out of this nightmarish month of October, where we can look forward to the return of Pavel Datsyuk, but it's going to take more than that. You can say that this is a "moral victory" by outshooting the other team, but that's just not good enough.

Panic button? No, not yet. There are adjustments to be made with the lines. Players need to step up, and make this team great again. I'll argue that if Petr Mrazek didn't make that one bone-headed play to let up the first goal, this game might look a little different, but I'll never know. Wings drop the season series against the Hurricanes, and my feelings are a bit crushed tonight. I'll be fine, don't worry... But they need to seriously figure it out. This just isn't going to cut it anymore.