The Malik Report
by George Malik on 02/01/13 at 10:21 PM ET
Updated 3x at 11:05 PM: Kent Huskins did get hurt, Howard starts on Saturday, and you can watch the goals below: That was bizarre...The Red Wings' 5-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues may go down in "Weird Game" history, but it was nonetheless incredibly satisfying to watch the Wings both overcome the Blues and themselves as this team in progress attempts to claw out an identity for itself.
The Wings absolutely raced out to a two-goal first period lead thanks to a PP and then even strength goal by Henrik Zetterberg within the game's first 8:07, but all of five minutes later, the Blues had tied the game 2-2, and by the 4:30 mark of the second period, the Blues had taken a 3-2 lead on a Red Wings team that first went into neutral and then reverse, simply backing off and allowing the Blues to fire shots and screens and then Patrik Berglund's body into Jimmy Howard, and by the end of the second period, Wings fans were booing the power play (justifiably so) and were worried that the Blues would take another game from 'em...
But in the third period, the Wings were given a silver-plated silver platter of a power play as David Backes was assessed a 5-minute major and ejected for a clean hit on Kent Huskins. The Wings may have felt all sorts of sympathy for the Blues, but when you're in a battle for points, you've got to capitalize, no matter how badly you're shaking your head at incompetent refs, and the Wings made sure to make the Blues pay--immediately.
Jonathan Ericsson snuck into the slot as the team's sixth man on the ice, on said delayed call, to rifle a one-timer from Zetterberg over Brian Elliott, who replaced Halak...And on the power play, Pavel Datsyuk rifled a gorgeous wrister through a perfect screen in Johan Franzen (nice game by Franzen, eh?). To some extent, the Wings held on late in the game, especially when Danny Cleary was assessed an even-up, but Zetterberg finished off a 5-point game with a hat trick thanks to an empty-netter in which he out-battled T.J. Oshie and David Perron to the net.
It wasn't pretty, but Zetterberg took the Wings on his back, Howard played great minus the second goal he gave up, and you've got to win any way you can.
Now we all have to hope that the Wings aren't too tired to not kick the stuffing out of the Blue Jackets tomorrow.
It was a wild and wacky win, and the Wings out-battled, out-competed and eventually defeated their own self-doubt as much as they did the Blues, but wild and wacky and wonderful always counts.
Don't forget to print out the scoresheet: it won't give you free Swedish Snowball, but it will give you free Arby's Curly Fries.
Update: Here's Zetterberg's first goal...
Here's his second, from FSD again...
And his hat trick goal, via the Blues' announcers:
While we're at it, here's Ericsson's game-tying goal...
Here's Datsyuk's goal...
And MLive's Ansar Khan says that Kent Huskins DID get hurt. Just not hit in the head.
Faceoffs 35-27 Detroit (Wings won 56%);
Blocked shots 16-11 St. Louis;
Missed shots 11-4 St. Louis (total attempts 51-48 Detroit);
Hits 30-25 St. Louis;
Giveaways 11-4 Detroit;
Takeaways 6-4 St. Louis.
Individual stats, TMR style:
Faceoffs: Datsyuk went 12-and-11 (52%); Zetterberg went 9-and-6 (50%); Abdelkader went 5-and-3 (63%); Emmerton went 5-and-3 (63%); Filppula went 4-and-2 (67%); Cleary and Franzen lost their only faceoffs.
Shots taken: Zetterberg led the team with 8 shots; Abdelkader had 3; Smith, Cleary, Eaves, Tootoo, Brunner and Emmerton had 2; Kindl, Quincey, Bertuzzi, Filppula, Ericsson, Kronwall and Franzen had 1.
Blocked attempts: Kronwall had 4 more attempts blocked by Blues players; Smith had 3 attempts blocked; Brunner and Zetterberg had 2 attempts blocked; Cleary, Datsyuk, Eaves, Tootoo and Bertuzzi hit Blues players 1 time.
Missed shots: Huskins, Cleary, Filppula and Kronwall missed the net 1 time.
Hits: Abdelkader and Franzen co-led the team with 4 hits apiece; Kronwall had 3 hits; Eaves, Tootoo and Emmerton had 2; Smith, Huskins, Miller, Quincey, Zetterberg and Ericsson had 1.
Giveaways: Smith and Cleary had 2 giveaways; Datsyuk, Brunner, Zetterberg, Filppula, Ericsson, Franzen and Howard had 1.
Takeaways: Smith, Datsyuk, Brunner and Filppula had 1 takeaway.
Blocked opponent shots: Smith, Huskins, Kindl, Miller and Quincey blocked 2 shots; Ericsson blocked 1 shot.
Penalties taken: Cleary, Emmerton, Quincey, Ericsson and Kronwall took minor penalties.
Plus-minus: the Wings finished at a collective +10. Huskins, Abdelkader, Miller and Tootoo finished at -1; Smith finished at +1; Datsyuk, Brunner, Quincey, Ericsson and Franzen finished at +2; Zetterberg finished at +3.
Points: Zetterberg had 3 goals and 2 assists for 5 points; Franzen had 3 assists; Ericsson had a goal and an assist for 2 points; Datsyuk had a goal; Brunner and Kronwall had assists.
Ice time: Smith led the team with 23:56 played; Kronwall played 22:39; Zetterberg played 21:45;
Datsyuk played 21:16; Quincey played 20:05; Brunner played 19:14;
Franzen played 19:11; Filppula played 19:03; Ericsson played 17:36;
Kindl played 16:58; Bertuzzi played 16:57; Cleary played 14:56;
Miller played 12:38; Abdelkader played 11:48; Huskins played 10:35;
Tootoo played 8:17; Emmerton played 8:02; Eaves played 7:53.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.