Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

Red Wings-Sabres quick take: point gained, frustrating point lost

The Detroit Red Wings faced off against the Buffalo Sabres on Friday night, with the Wings looking to extend their 3-game winning streak against a Sabres team whose goaltender, Anders Nilsson, has one of the best home-ice records in the league.

Nilsson out-dueled Petr Mrazek despite 70 Wings shot attempts and 34 shots on net as the Red Wings were undone by a struggling power play, lost puck battles and a terrible non-call in OT as Buffalo won 3-2 in overtime.

Danny DeKeyser, who got walked around by Ryan O'Reilly on the 2-2 goal, was hooked around the hands by the same player, and the puck made its way to Kyle Okposo, who slid the puck past Mrazek at 4:34 of OT...

But the Wings had an OT power play of their own that wasn't demonstrative, the Wings just played kind of sloppy hockey for many stretches on the night, and Darren Helm's return wasn't enough to give the Wings the grit and jam they needed to grind out a heavily-needed win over the Sabres.

The 1st period began with Tomas Tatar, Riley Sheahan and Dylan Larkin facing off against Tyler Ennis, Ryan O'Reilly and Kyle Okposo;

Danny DeKeyser and Jonathan Ericsson drew in on the blueline opposite Taylor Fedun and Justin Falk;

And Petr Mrazek tended the net against Anders Nilsson.

Sheahan drew in vs. O'Reilly and lost the draw, so Buffalo chipped and chased into the Wings' zone, with Okposo reversing the puck to O'Reilly and the Sabres pushing the puck to the point for a wide attempt;

Larkin was able to clear the puck but had to chase it back into his own zone. He slid the puck across to Ericsson and Ericsson chipped a long pass to Gustav Nyquist, who steered Jake McCabe into the boards trying to get to the puck, and Nyquist took an interference penalty as a result.

Nyquist sat at 56 seconds, and Buffalo headed to the power play.

Glendening won the opening deep zone faceoff but Ristolainen held the puck in for a moment; Detroit cleared the puck and Helm slid the puck to Glendening, who chipped the puck off Nilsson while shorthanded.

Buffalo worked the puck back up ice and Reinhart was stopped by Mrazek, and when the Sabres touched the puck on the rebound, they high-sticked it, yielding a faceoff a long way from the Wings' net.

Nielsen took the draw vs. O'Reilly and the Sabres won it, setting up and skating up the ice, but Ouellet pinched to make a smart stop; Buffalo returned to the Wings' zone 3-on-2 and Mrazek made a big stop on Nolan, but the Sabres put the puck off the goalpost on the rebound, and Detroit cleared the puck out of the zone and changed.

Athanasiou, Ouellet, Marchenko and Nielsen were able to clear the Sabres' rush some 1:35 into the PK and change;

Buffalo re-set and charged back into the Wings' zone, where Mrazek touched the puck for DeKeyser, who was unable to clear the puck again. Buffalo cycled and slid a point shot off Mrazek as the penalty expired, and Gionta centered the puck but Mrazek made a nice stop on Kane with a pile of bodies in front of him.

Zetterberg took the "bump-up shift" faceoff but lost it, and Buffalo generated a shot on goal and forced Green to make a dangerous pinch that Mantha covered up for, with the Wings scrambling to clear the puck out of danger, and Buffalo roaring back into Detroit's zone.

Mantha did carry the puck up and out of the Wings' zone and into Buffalo's end of the ice, but he dragged it at the line and put Athanasiou and Zetterberg offside;

Athanasiou, Nielsen and Vanek worked with DeKeyser and Jensen to get the puck to center, where Athanasiou coughed up the puck to Ennis, and the Wings cleared the zone but again, Buffalo charged into Detroit's zone, icing the puck this time around.

Helm, Glendening and Abdelkader drew in in Buffalo's zone and lost the deep faceoff, affording Buffalo some time to try to clear the puck, but Glendening and Abdelkader established a good forecheck and really pestered the Sabres' defense. A bad pinch by Marchenko didn't cost the Wings as Rricsson set up and slid the puck over to Green as Deroit changed;

DeKeyser cleared the puck again and dropped it to Green, who couldn't get through center, so Green had to chase down the puck in his own end, and Sheahan and DeKeyser battled 5:45 into the 1st, pushing the puck out to Larkin, Sheahan and Tatar, who skated into Buffalo's zone and set up.

Larkin charged around the perimeter and tried to get a long shot off on Nilsson, but his attempt was blocked into the crowd.

Zetterberg, Mantha and Nyquist took to the ice together after a TV timeout with the Wings trailing in shots 4-1.

The Wings lost the draw but Jensen ragged the puck up into Buffalo's zone, and when the Sabres took possession, Jensen and Ouellet struggled to prevent an Eichel tip via Ristolainen;

Zetterberg went the other way and lost a stick due to composite failure, so the Wings changed and Athanasiou sprung Nielsen, he charged into the Sabres' zone and dropped the puck to Athanasiou, who clanged the puck off the crossbar.

Detroit had to take a faceoff in its own zone and lost it, yielding a smart Mrazek stop with his blocker, and the Wings chipped and changed.

As Green and DeKeyser re-set, Abdelkader, Glendening and Helm took to the ice opposite Evander Kane's line, and Green tried to rag the puck up ice for Abdelkader, but the Wings were struggling to generate possession in the offensive zone, and Buffalo got an easy clearing attempt.

Sheahan, Tatar and Larkin took to the ice and deked and dangled down low, with Tatar getting taken down, yielding a power play as Bogosian got called for...well...Tatar got pulled down by the pants.

Detroit set up on the power play and Zetterberg battled to keep the puck in the zone off a Nielsen faceoff win, Green kept the puck in the offensive zone, and Vanek worked the puck to Nielsen, who chipped the puck through Nilsson.

Nielsen made it 1-0 @ 9:02 from Green.

Abdelkader, Helm and Tatar took the bump-up shift and surrendered a shot to Eichel before changing, and Larkin went offside;

Mantha, Zetterberg and Nyquist were backed in by Ennis, O'Reilly and Okposo, and Marchenko and Ericsson worked the puck around the back boards but had to reverse flow and chip the puck up an open side, yielding a Sabres cycle and an outlet to nobody.

Detroit changed and allowed Ouellet to back in behind the net to facilitate the change. Nielsen took the puck from Jensen on a short pass and his shot was blocked, so Jensen and Ouellet re-set, sent the puck up to Athanasiou, and he roared in and dropped the puck to Jensen, whose shot was stopped.

Glendening, Helm and Abdelkader took a draw with 12-and-change gone in the 1st, after the TV timeout, and they forced Kane's line to ice the puck;

So Nielsen, Athanasiou and Vanek drew in, lost the faceoff and Ouellet and Jensen surrendered a shot to William Carrier, who slid the puck just wide of Mrazek.

The Wings roared back up the ice and Jensen got a smart shot in on Nilsson, forcing an offensive zone faceoff that Zetterberg's line surrendered--but forced the Sabres to ice--yielding a quick change.

Helm lost the offensive zone faceoff, and Marchenko sent a blind pass to nobody, affording the Sabres the ability to chip and chase, but the Wings cleared the puck, Glendening got the puck to Helm, Helm worked it to Abdelkader, and his shot was blocked.

Marchenko then backed up behind the Wings' net to facilitate a line change, DeKeyser slid the puck up to Sheahan, and Sheahan, Tatar and Larkin battled but could not keep the puck in the offensive zone.

Green dumped and the Sheahan line chased, with Larkin stealing the puck and backhanding it high and wide with Tatar in front; Larkin shot another puck in from the blueline that was stopped by Nilsson with Sheahan in front of the goaltender, and Buffalo iced the puck as Detroit began to take over the game.

Zetterberg's line got a wraparound and an icing call on the Sabres won their faceoff, but Green and DeKeyser reversed flow on the Sabres and helped Nielsen get the puck back to DeKeyser, whose shot was tipped wide; Green found Dekeyser and Buffalo blocked it out of play.

Off the TV timeout, Sheahan drew in for a faceoff and mucked and ground but didn't win it, and the Sabres chugged up ice but iced the puck, yielding yet another icing call at 14:53.

Helm, Abdelkader and Glendening lost the deep zone faceoff and Eichel, Foligno and Reinhart worked the puck to the line, where Franson was stopped; Bogosian worked the puck the other way, charged into the slot, and his attempts were blocked as Detroit exited the zone with Marchenko sliding the puck to Abdelkader, but Nilsson grabbed the puck and stopped play.

Detroit was getting a little sloppy in its own zone.

Detroit lost another deep offensive zone faceoff, and Xetterberg managed to work his way through 2 Sabres to help Mantha get a gorgeous shot off Nilsson's glove and into the corner, where Falk beat Nyquist to the puck and cleared it down the ice.

Zetterberg and the Wings re-set in their own zone and forced Buffalo offside, but Detroit lost another faceoff, this time at their blueline, and when the Wings cleared the puck out of trouble, Nielsen chipped a rolling puck on Nilsson, and Vanek helped keep the puck in for Jensen and Ouellet, not once but twice, and Vanek set up Nielsen for a shot attempt that was blocked.

Buffalo set up in Detroit's zone and cycled, with Evander Kane tucking a wraparound attempt into Mrazek;

Eichel's line hopped over the boards vs. Larkin's, and Sheahan drew in vs. Eichel, won the faceoff (a rarity) and Detroit coughed up the puck, with Mrazek having to make a big stop and Buffalo cycling the puck down low. Buffalo worked the puck to the blueline, where Ristolainen shot the puck wide, and Sheahan cleared the zone.

Eichel's line set up and Franson walked in, passed the puck across, and Petr Mrazek made an astonishing stop on Marcus Foligno. Buffalo re-set at center and Mrazek stopped a long one by Eichel.

Detroit won its defensive zone faceoff, and Abdelkader slid a puck toward Nilsson that was stopped with Helm lurking nearby;

Buffalo went back the other way, entering Detroit's zone and setting up, but the Wings iced the puck out of some desperation and Helm drew in vs. O'Reilly, winning the draw and attempting to clear the zone. Buffalo swiped the puck and Okposo shot it wide, Buffalo jammed the puck back out front and Mrazek swept it away, but the Wings iced it again.

Buffalo won the faceoff in Detroit's zone but Detroit blocked Ristolainen's shot and re-set and changed with 30 seconds left in the 1st;

DeKeyser coughed up a shot but Nyquist blocked a Sabre shot, and DeKeyser clanged a heavy shot off the boards and Mantha stole the puck at center, getting a late shot on Nilsson as time expired.

  • The 1st period in summary: The period was literally up-and-down. Lots of faceoffs, lots of shots and shot attempts for both teams and a lot of sloppiness in front of both nets. The Wings had the forechecking advantage and had a better breakout, yielding a rare road power play goal and some stellar chances on Nilsson, but Mrazek had to be very sharp, especially late.

Detroit was out-shot 13-11 and out-attempted 24-20; Detroit was out-drawn an ugly 20-5 (20%).

FSD had the scoring chances at 7-5 Buffalo on their 13-11 shot advantage.

The 2nd period began with news that the Sabres lost Jake McCabe after his hit by Gustav Nyquist.

Buffalo won the opening faceoff, but Green yielded a turnover that Larkin chipped into a Sabre;

Buffalo went the other way, with Eichel getting a shot off on Mrazek, but Detroit charged back up ice and Tatar slid the puck into Nilsson, and the Wings ground the rebound around the left side boards, where Marchenko held the puck in for Nyquist, he deked and dangled, Zetterberg was hauled down sans penalty, and Nyquist re-set at center, finding Mantha for a fine scoring chance.

Buffalo set up and skated into Detroit's zone, where O'Reilly fired the puck wide of Mrazek;

Zetterberg knocked the puck down at center and found Mantha, who was blocked by Bogosian, and Mantha slid the puck back to Ericsson, but the puck bounced over his stick at the blueline.

Detroit chipped and changed 2 minutes into the 2nd, and Jensen stepped on a puck and fell over, yielding a Sabres rush that Detroit negated by allowing Ouellet to back up into the "pocket" behind the Wings' net.

Detroit skated up and into the neutral zone, where Athanasiou knocked over Gionta, and Buffalo took the puck...Where Evander Kane slid by Darren Helm and Helm reached back to pick off Kane, taking a tripping penalty at 2:43.

Buffalo set up but lost the deep zone faceoff in the Wings' end, and Eichel walked the puck up to center, dropped to O'Reilly, and he slid the puck into Detroit's zone, but the Wings allowed the Sabres to over-handle the puck and skate back into their own zone re-setting.

Re-set, the Sabres did, and DeKeyser, Sheahan, Nielsen and Ericsson worked the puck around the back boards and cleared it down the ice.

Ristolainen set up with a minute left in the PP, and Kane, Gionta and Moulson set up in the Wings' zone. Marchenko got his stick in the way of a Sabres pass out front, forcing a faceoff, and Detroit won it, clearing the puck down the ice.

Buffalo set up and skated up through center ice, where Tyler Ennis deked and dangled and got high-sticked by Ouellet, yielding 24 seconds of a 5-on-3.

Buffalo set up in the right faceoff circle, won the draw, and Eichel blasted a heavy shot into Glendening;

Eichel re-set, cycled with Okposo and O'Reilly, and Okposo's shot was stopped by Mrazek, the Sabres held the puck in, and Mrazek made a big stop on Okposo, and DeKeyser could not clear the puck.

Buffalo worked the perimeter and worked the points, with Ristolainen finding Eichel, and Sam Reinhart kicked the puck into the net.

The Sabres' goal stood at 5:06, thanks to Toronto.

Zetterberg, Mantha and Nyquist played the bump-up shift, pushing the puck into Buffalo's zone, and the Sabres took over there, getting the puck out to center before Marchneko got the puck to Zetterberg, he found Nyquist, he found Mantha, and Mantha chipped a heavy shot off Nilsson.

Buffalo iced the puck but got another break as Buffalo got the draw at center, and they won the draw. Nielsen re-set and set up Athanasiou, he reversed control, and as Nielsen was high-sticked, the Wings pushed the puck to the point with Mrazek skating toward the bench...

And Danny DeKeyser had to scramble back to stop an own-goal from occurring.

Detroit headed to the PP at 6:24 as Falk got tagged for high-sticking.

Nielsen, Nyquist, Vanek, Green and Zetterberg won the opening faceoff and Nyquist made a fine attempt to score that Nilsson shut down;

Detroit held in the puck momentarily, but eventually surrendered possession and the Sabres cleared it down ice;

Vanek performed a "Datsyuk Drop" to Nielsen and it didn't work, giving Buffalo an easy clear;

Green carried the puck up and dropped it to Nielsen, he set up Vanek, Nielsen tried to set up Zetterberg, and he gave up an amazing chance to score, did Nielsen.

Detroit regrouped and Mantha slid the puck back to DeKeyser, he was stopped, Larkin couldn't grab the rebound and up came Girgensons for Buffalo, but DeKeyser blocked his shot out of play.

Detroit won the draw in its own zone and pushed the puck up to Mantha as he, Tatar, Abdelkader, DeKeyser and Larkin set up in the offensive zone, but they coughed the puck up and the Sabres cleared it once, then twice as the penalty expired.

With 8:30 gone in the 2nd, Sheahan, Helm and Glendening ground out the puck at center ice, battling Eichel's line, and Helm worked in on the backhand, firing a fine shot on Nilsson;

The Wings held the puck in and Ericsson's point shot was blocked, yielding a 3-on-2 for Buffalo that Mrazek stopped, Marchenko coughed up, and Fedun slid off Zetterberg, and Zetterberg worked up ice himself and fired a shot just high of the net on a gorgeous 1-on-4 deke and dangle.

Nyquist stole a puck and set up Zetterberg, who was stopped; Mantha helped on the cycle, Nyquist reversed, and Nielsen came back on a change to square up a 3-on-3 that the Wings took care of, and Mantha set up Green, who was tripped up as the Wings charged into Buffalo's zone.

Nielsen, Athanasiou, Vanek, Ouellet and Marchenko tried to cycle the puck in the offensive zone, but they found themselves battling the Sabres in Detroit's zone instead. Kane got a long shot off on Mrazek and Girgensons got a gorgeous rebound on Mrazek that was stopped as well.

Gionta and the Sabres re-set and skated back into the Wings' zone, where Jensen was picked off by Kane, Kane battled Athanasiou off the puck, and Ouellet and Gionta had a mini-skirmish as Sheahan cleared the puck and afforded the Wings a change.

Marchenko slid the puck toward the net but was stopped, and Tatar and Larkin tried to cycle, but the Wings couldn't keep possession in the offensive zone, going offside.

When play resumed after the TV timeout, Marchenko and Ericsson coughed up a chance to William Carrier, and Abdelkader, Glendening and Sheahan mucked the puck into the Sabres' zone, grinding it to DeKeyser and then Green, who cycled the puck and worked the puck to Larkin, who hopped over the boards and slid the puck to Tatar, who battled the puck in deep.

O'Reilly the elder, Cal, cleared the puck out of trouble and both teams changed.

Tatar, Larkin and Mantha worked together for a shift, but instead, Reinhart set up Eichel for a glorious scoring chance that Mrazek stifled expertly well.

Ericsson cleared the puck down the ice and Detroit changed;

Vanek, Athanasiou and Nielsen set up against O'Reilly, Ennis and Okposo, and Green set up Vanek on a breakout that he dumped into Nilsson, and the Sabres' goalie chose to hold onto the puck.

Helm, Abdelkader and Glendening took to the ice after the TV timeout and won the puck to DeKeyser, who didn't hold the puck in and surrendered possession at center ice.

The Wings set up and skated up but were repelled at the Sabres' line, and Fedun was blocked going the other way once, and then twice as Mrazek made a stout stop on Okposo.

Detroit continued to allow the Sabres free rein in the offensive zone, and Kane chipped a shot off Green, Helm clanged a shot off the glass and Buffalo re-set at center and charged in against the Sheahan line, with Girgensons and Bogosian working the puck deeper and deeper.

Sheahan was able to spring Tatar, and Larkin reversed to Sheahan, but the Sabres cleared the zone and went offside at the Wings' blueline.

Mrazek played the puck to Ericsson and he gave it to Reinhart, who put a puck off Mrazek's glove and wide;

Detroit went the other way, but Mantha, Nyquist and Zetterberg surrendered the puck to the Sabres, and Ericsson and Marchenko had a miserable shift, barely clearing the puck out of a high-danger area.

Detroit iced the puck at 17:01,with Nielsen, Vanek, Athanasiou, Ericsson and Marchenko clearing the puck to center and surrendering a dump-in to Buffalo, which set up and cycled. Ericsson chipped the puck off Nielsen to Vanek, he set up Athanasiou, and he fired a long shot on Nilsson so that the Wings could change.

Sheahan, Tatar and Larkin worked together and battled in the Sabres' zone, with a long wrist shot from Ouellet finding Nilsson in tight, and the Wings were unable to hold the puck in, but they re-set and skated into Buffalo territory, where Ouellet worked the puck toward Sheahan.

Sheahan missed it, and Buffalo charged into Detroit's zone, and the Wings coughed the puck up to Fedun, who fired a laser beam in on Mrazek, who made a big blocker stop.

Zetterberg took a center ice faceoff and won it back to his defense, the Wings chipped it into Buffalo's zone...and iced it.

Zetterberg won the final faceoff and Buffalo ground it out in the corner, but time expired.

  • The 2nd period in summary: Detroit struggled more and more defensively as the 2nd period continued, and that power play after the Reinhart goal was something of a turning point as Buffalo really dug in defensively and the Wings got too cute--and stayed that way. Detroit got ground down a bit as the period progressed, but it was unforced errors that hurt the Wings the most.

Detroit was out-shot 14-10 in the 2nd and 27-21 on the night; Detroit was out-attempted 45-37; Detroit went 15-and-25 (38%) in the faceoff circle.

The 3rd period began with Sheahan, Larkin and Tatar on ice, and the trio won the opening faceoff and Marchenko chipped the puck into Buffalo's zone. The Wings worked the puck around the perimeter, reversed it, overpowered Ristolainen, and Sheahan held the puck in for a moment, but the Sabres were able to clear and Detroit dumped and started to change at center ice.

Green slid the puck up to Larkin and he chopped the puck into Buffalo's end, so the Sabres chose to ice the puck yet again.

Zetterberg drew in for the deep zone faceoff but O'Reilly won it, and Buffalo's Ennis and Okposo dumped and chased as Green and DeKeyser screwed their exchange, but Zetterberg helped Green slide the puck down ice.

Buffalo went back up into Detroit's zone, and after Mike Green tripped over a rut, Zetterberg came back to help DeKeyser clear the puck out of trouble.

Abdelkader, Helm and Glendening were able to clear the puck from the Wings' zone off the faceoff, with some difficulty, and Marchenko slid the puck up to Abdelkader, he fired a long shot toward the net, and it was tipped out of play for a faceoff.

Nielsen won the draw and Jensen slid the puck to Vanek, whose shot was blocked; Nielsen and Vanek went behind the net to battle the puck away from the Sabres' defenders, and they were only able to do so for a moment.

As the Sabres went into Detroit's zone, Detroit exited in a hurry, and Vanek skated into the zone and chipped a shot wide;

Tatar held the puck in for Vanek as he tried to cycle with Sheahan, and Sheahan missed Vanek's centering pass;

3 minutes into the 3rd period, Green slid the puck up to Sheahan and he chipped the puck in deep, with Nyquist and Zetterberg grinding it out down low, but surrendering the puck to Eichel, who carried the puck up to Fedun. Fedun got a shot off on Zetterberg and the Sabres worked the perimeter, getting the puck to the point and then cycling as the Wings got backed in. Eichel quarterbacked play but coughed the puck up, and Nyquist clared the puck down ice.

4:10 into the 3rd, the Sabres worked the puck back into Detroit's zone and Helm just coughed it up easily;

Helm then picked off Okposo, and sealed him to the boards;

O'Reilly slid a puck just wide of Ennis, and the Wings iced the puck. Detroit won the deep zone faceoff and Abdelkader and Helm were grabbed and ground as Tatar hopped over the boards, stole the puck, and got the puck to Abdelkader, who cycled to the line. Jensen faked a shot and found Abdelkader, he exchanged the puck with Jensen deep, he found Ouellet, and Detroit didn't get a shot off the whole exchange.

Detroit won a deep zone faceoff on another Sabres icing call, and Vanek, Nielsen and Athanasiou were at least able to generate a shot attempt before Nilsson held on;

They won another faceoff and cycled, but Athanasiou coughed up the puck and Buffalo pushed it into Detroit's zone.

The Wings nearly set up Athanasiou on a stretch pass, but Ouellet's 3-liner was blocked by the Sabres.

Jensen slid the puck up to Zetterberg and Vanek found Athanasiou, who clanged the puck off Nilsson and out to center it went.

Detroit re-set and DeKeyser quarterbacked two plays that didn't result in shots. Off to a TV timeout we went at 4:47.

Zetterberg, Nyquist and Mantha took to the ice after the TV timeout and they ended up getting backed into their own zone, where Ryan O'Reilly got a wraparound chance on Mrazek, who made a big stop.

Zetterberg worked the puck to Nyquist and then Mantha, and Green pinched to try to help the Wings keep the puck in the Sabres' zone, but it didn't work, and when the Wings re-set at center, Nyquist couldn't find Mantha.

Sheahan won an offensive zone draw to Marchenko, who fired a pass into Nilsson, and the Sabres chugged up the other way, with Fedun sliding the puck the other way.

Detroit iced the puck and surrendered shots to Reinhart and Eichel, who blasted a heavy shot wide of the net, and as the Wings went to center ice, Taylor Fedun bumped Larkin, then cross-checked him, and Fedun headed to the box at 8:19.

It was chintzy. Both players should have gone.

Detroit lost the opening deep zone faceoff and watched Ristolainen generate a shot chance on Mrazek before Green could set up and drop the puck through center to Nielsen and then Zetterberg, who centered the puck to Vanek. Vanek cycled the puck to Zetterberg, he got the puck to Green, and Green set up Nyquist, the Wings worked the perimeter, and Zetterberg fanned on his shot attempt.

Green set up with 1:10 left in the power play, exchanged with Nyquist, set up thanks to Zetterberg's help and the Wings nearly worked a back-door play to Nielsen before Nyquist jammed the puck down and worked it to Green, back to Nyquist, who put a puck off the crossbar behind Nilsson.

Abdelkader, Larkin, Mantha, DeKeyser and Tatar set up behind the Wings' net and skated into Buffalo's zone, where Mantha worked the puck to DeKeyser, he found Larkin, and Tatar fired the puck...

Off Zach Bogosian's stick.

The power play failed and there was 9:41 remaining in regulation as the TV timeout hit.

Sheahan, Larkin and Tatar took to the ice for the bump-up shift, lost the faceoff in Buffalo's zone, lost the faceoff at their own blueline, and eventually set up at center. Tatar chipped the puck in on Nilsson, he played it around to Ristolainen and then Foligno, and Larkin and the Wings took over at center.

Sheahan was chased off the puck and the Sabres went the other way, nearly setting up Eichel, but Larkin picked him off;

Zetterberg's line took to the ice and battled the puck into the Sabres' end, re-set at center, and Mantha was unable to take DeKeyser's pass, so Buffalo charged into Detroit's zone, Mike Green chipped the puck off Zetterberg and he found Nyquist, who gave and went with Mantha. The Wings pumped the puck back to Jensen, who chipped a hard shot on Nilsson from some distance.

13:05 into the 3rd, Vanek, Athanasiou and Nielsen lost their deep zone faceoff and had to clear the puck out of trouble, which they did not. Mrazek made a big stop and was dumped by Jensen, forcing the Wings to ice the puck.

Nielsen then lost the defensive zone faceoff, but the Wings won the battle for the puck and they charged up into Buffalo's zone ,where Vanek found Athanasiou in front, but Nilsson made a sparkling save.

Detroit let Buffalo ice the puck and negated an icing call as Glendening got grabbed; he worked the puck to Abdelkader, and Helm worked the puck toward the net, but was pulled at by Fedun;

Marchenko drove the lane and the Wings and Sabres piled up in front of Nilsson, with Helm chipping the puck into the slot. The puck rolled off Abdelkader's leg, Helm lurked in the background as Marchenko fell over as well, and Helm chipped a weird little shot off Nilsson and in.

Helm made it 2-1 @ 13:38 of the 3rd from Abdelkader and Marchenko.

Mrazek had to make a big stop on Ristolainen on the bump-up shift, and Tatar, Larkin and Zetterberg worked to cycle the puck back to Ericsson, whose big slap shot's rebound went to Zetterberg.

He was pushed at by Ristolainen, and the Sabres charged back into Detroit territory, but the Wings were able to clear and change.

Mrazek played the puck to Ericsson and he found Nielsen, Nielsen slid the puck up to Mantha, and Mantha's long shot yielded a TV timeout.

At 15:13, Zetterberg drew in in the Sabres' zone, lost the faceoff, and Buffalo worked the puck up ice, but Mrazek played it to Jensen and Jensen cleared the zone. Zetterberg swiped it at center via Nyquist, worked the puck up and in to Nyquist, and Mantha tried to help, but the puck was cleared beyond him and down to the Wings' end, where...

Ryan O'Reilly worked past Danny DeKeyser, slid the puck in front and backhanded the puck past Mrazek to tie the game.

O'Reilly made it 2-2 @ 15:51.

Tatar, Sheahan and Larkin played the bump-up shift, battling the Sabres in their own zone, with Jensen and Ouellet setting up Larkin and then Tatar, who chipped the puck out to Sheahan in the slot. Sheahan deferred, as did Tatar, and the Sabres cleared the puck easily.

Ouellet chipped the puck to Larkin, he skated into Buffalo's zone, Nielsen slid the puck across to Athanasiou, and he was interfered with.

Buffalo set up in Detroit's zone and Reinhart worked it back to Fedun, to Franson, and Ericsson blocked the shot. Marchenko coughed the puck up and Buffalo worked the puck to Franson skating in from the point, and he coughed the puck up himself.

Mrazek still made a big stop as the Sabres cycled.

Helm was able to break loose with Glendening and Abdelkader, and he fired a puck over the net, Abdelkader found Helm, and he was blocked;

Abdelkader slid the puck to Green, he chipped the puck deep, Glendening ground it to Helm, he cycled and slid it back to Green, and Green coughed it up.

With 1:45 remaining, the Wings changed, and DeKeyser and Mantha worked the puck into Buffalo territory, where Zetterberg was blocked off by Weber. Zetterberg and Mantha found Nyquist, he was blocked, the Sabres charged up as Kane deked Ouellet, but Kane missed the net on his deke-and-dangle play, and the Wings were able to clear the zone.

Tatar, Sheahan and Larkin worked the puck out of trouble and into Buffalo's zone, where Ristolainen overpowered Sheahan and Larkin and Bogosian slid the puck up to center ice, where Marchenko just blocked it out of play.

The Sabres and Wings played the final few seconds of regulation in neutral ice, and Buffalo backed into its own zone as time expired.

  • The 3rd period in summary: Detroit worked its way out of trouble, slowly but surely generating possession, control, "grind time" and a goal for, but they gave it all back thanks to a defensive gaffe from DeKeyser. That doesn't take away what Helm gave the team--a point.

Detroit out-shot Buffalo 11-7 in the 3rd and they were out-shot 35-32 overall; Detroit out-attempted Buffalo 62-58; Detroit went 26-and-39 (40%) on draws.

In overtime, DeKeyser, Larkin and Tatar started, lost the opening faceoff, but DeKeyser sent the puck to Larkin, he raced around the offensive zone, Tatar set up at center, and the Wings changed;

Vanek worked with Helm and DeKeyser to set up Helm for a wide shot ,and Vanek found the rebound as O'Reilly lost his stick.

Green hopped over the boards and slowly but surely worked o'Reilly, he found Vanek, and Vanek's shot was blocked, but Green took the rebound and fired a shot wide;

Ristolainen battled vs Helm, Vanek stole the puck, and he was hooked clear in alone.

Detroit headed to the PP at 1:41. Okposo got tagged for holding.

O'Reilly won the deep zone faceoff and Ristolainen cleared the zone.

Detroit set up and Green carried the puck into Buffalo territory, but he coughed the puck up to Ristolainen, and Detroit set up again.

Zetterberg, Green, Mantha and Vanek worked the perimeter, and Vanek's shot was blocked into the netting.

Buffalo called a timeout and Detroit coughed up the puck but O'Reilly was held by Zetterberg, and Green set up Mantha for a hard shot.

The Wings changed up the PP, and they lost the faceoff, with Mrazek having to set up Larkin as he blazed through neutral ice and set up Tatar. Tatar found Nielsen and Nielsen looked for Tatar, to Larkin, back to Tatar, to Larkin, and Abdelkader's screen didn't stop NIlsson from stopping a shot.

Tatar worked to Larkin, he missed the net, and that ended the power play.

With 1:18 left in OT, Nielsen set up and skated in, coughed up the puck, hooked a Sabre, and was called.

Nielsen sat with 1:07 remaining in OT/with 3:51 gone.

Glendening, Ericsson and DeKeyser started the PK, and the Sabres won the opening draw 4 on 3, Ristolainen worked the puck around to Okposo, to O'Reilly, and then Okposo went to Eichel. He found Ristolainen, O'Reilly was stopped by Mrazek, DeKeyser was hooked sans call, and Buffalo worked the puck down low, with Okposo scoring.

It's disgusting that DeKeyser got hooked and the Sabres scored on the play, but that's the way it goes.

Okposo made it 3-2 @ 4:34 on the power play.

  • In overtime: Detroit didn't score on its power play, Buffalo got an earned call to generate their own power play, and scored on a cheapie of a non-call. The goal counted as much as Reinhart's kick-to-stick marker, and the Wings lost an important point after gaining one.

Detroit and Buffalo tied 2-2 in shots in OT and Detroit was out-shot 37-34 overall; Detroit out-attempted Buffalo 70-61; Detroit went 26-and-44 (37%) in the faceoff circle.


Here's the Game Summary...

And the Event Summary

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink



Damn DeKeyser.  He’s simultaneously the goat and the victim.  Regardless, we got hosed tonight by the refs.

Posted by Wise1 on 01/20/17 at 11:09 PM ET

Alan's avatar

I checked in just in time to see us blow it in OT. We didn’t gain the ground we should have tonight, but we at least slid into 7th in the wild card race. We’re three points back from Toronto and five behind Boston and Ottawa.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 01/20/17 at 11:17 PM ET

PierreC's avatar

Tell me…on a 3 on 4 in OT, we are using one forward and 2 Ds et tey are both near our net…how come any of those two can take care of Okposo left alone in front ?

How come E is basically without any talen, skills and yet he is always there on critical situations.

If you have some time to lose Watch him closely, he has no talent at all, can’t make a pass, cant skate, cant check ...but he logs over 20 minutes of TOI !

Dekeyser got beat like a rag doll on the third Buffalo goal (O’reilly wrap around) and Mrazek was lazy on it, i hope he learns his lesson on that goal cause it doesnt mean you will stop the puck if you stay on your knees forever.

Of course..someone could have pick Okposo up…but of course nobody moved..

Helm was atrocious..except for his goal.

Overall we fought hard but that’s a costly point to lose.

Have you notice in OT when Larkin slammed his stick on the ice on a change ?...

We had all the chance in the world in OT to close the deal..but failed..just like this overall season.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada on 01/20/17 at 11:31 PM ET

PierreC's avatar

and Sheahan logged almost 18 min of TOI….can you believe that ?

Ask Larkin and Tatar if they want to play with Sheahan…id love to hear their answes.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada on 01/20/17 at 11:33 PM ET


No idea what PierreC is talking about… Helm, Glendenning and Abby is a great line. I liked most of the lines tonight. DDK was atrocious. He just isn’t a good enough player to be getting the minutes he’s getting. He’s caught flat footed, he’s easily pushed around and he just lacks some sort of intensity. I just don’t get all of the clamoring for him.

Posted by weswolverine on 01/20/17 at 11:34 PM ET

DocF's avatar

The reason the Red Wings did not score on their OPT power play is that they reverted to their usual ballet moves.  This team need to keep it beyond simple and just SHOOT THE PUCK!

I think I’ve said that before, but it works.

Posted by DocF from Now: Lynn Haven, FL; was Reidsville, NC on 01/20/17 at 11:48 PM ET


Mrazek wasn’t lazy on the second goal. Osgood talked about this at length in the post game. Petr was using a technique Salajko has been teaching him. Osgood said Mrazek should have basically disregarded that technique there and just done what came naturally to him. It had nothing to do with laziness.

Posted by Ilovekermit on 01/20/17 at 11:52 PM ET

Chet's avatar

AA has been on a tear and looked pretty dangerous early in this game, yet he played if you were minutes than anyone else, including our plugs.

What is wrong with this coach?

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/21/17 at 12:22 AM ET

Chet's avatar


Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/21/17 at 12:22 AM ET


Sheahan - 17 minutes, Abby with 15, Helm and Glen with 14.
AA with 10. That’s wrong. Most of the time those defensive specialists were pinned in our zone.
Helm with a pathetic lazy penalty that led to a tying goal.  PP 4 on 3 and not a single chance.
These type of games make me really sad, sorry. Because the effort is there, but coaching is so bad.

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 12:28 AM ET


First game back Helm plays 13 minutes, AA plays 10.
Any doubts who will be exposed to Vegas and who will be protected?
Mr.Ilitch, please save this franchise from Blash and KH!

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 12:40 AM ET


Helm with a pathetic lazy penalty that led to a tying goal

This perfectly sums up this place! People so filled with hatred for the team that they just make shit up! Helmer was great tonight. He didn’t have a lazy penalty that lead to a goal. And AA had some really *#$%@& boneheaded defensive plays.

Posted by weswolverine on 01/21/17 at 12:43 AM ET


This was a pathetic lazy penalty by Helm. No hatred, just a fact. Watch the replay.

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 12:44 AM ET


This was a pathetic lazy penalty by Helm. No hatred, just a fact. Watch the replay.

It didn’t lead to a goal.

Posted by weswolverine on 01/21/17 at 12:47 AM ET

Chet's avatar

was a shit penalty.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 01/21/17 at 01:14 AM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

Sheahan played 17:00 minutes

A.A. played 10:54

I wish for just one post game press conference the Detroit Lap Dogs….Err Wings beat writers could be replaced by the Toronto media.

Not only should Blashill be fired…Every wings beat writer should be fired by their respective papers for not asking about Sheahans presence in the Wings lineup every day until the question is answered!!!

In other news… Tomas Nosek scored his 15 goal of the season in GR tonight,  and now has 29 points in 29 games Played.

Someone Needs to be fired for dereliction of duty..

Whoever is in charge of the power play

Any or all of the above hmmm  mad  shut eye

Posted by Down River Dan on 01/21/17 at 01:34 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

Helm, Glendenning and Abby is a great line.

Helm and Abby used to be an effective and inseparable pair, much like Malts and Draper were, back in the day.  Perhaps Blash will channel that chemistry and keep ‘em going, because I agree, they did a pretty solid job tonight despite two guys not being in game shape and one of them being Luke Glendening. 



Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 01/21/17 at 01:51 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

Now, I love me some Dylan Larkin, but he’s skating closer and closer to that line that separates a player that has fire, intensity, and passion and a player that is just a whiny little b*tch.  (Let’s call it the “Crosby Line”).  I keep seeing him complain to the officials over every little missed infraction and his dramatic stick slam in OT when Tats didn’t attack… Captain Hank needs to teach him to channel his rage and pick his battles or he’s going to end up labeled a super whiner like…say…Crosby (who has, as much as it hurts to say, matured… slightly) and not get the tough calls since the Refs will not be very fond of him.


Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 01/21/17 at 01:57 AM ET


Biggest problem, we couldn’t win a faceoff all night. Again AA sets on PP’s, those drop back passes entering offensive zone again, Z needs to practice slapshots. Again 5v5 we don’t cover each player in our zone.

Posted by stateofmifan on 01/21/17 at 02:09 AM ET


I agree about the face offs. Especially critical draws on PP and PK.
Also Blashilll is coaching scared. He thinks Sheahan, Abby, Glen and Helm are goods defensively. They are not imo. Yes, Abby/Helm/Glen could be a good 4th line when they get in shape. And they should play 10 minutes per game.
Also, I did not see a replay, but there is no way DK was not hooked while clearing the puck in OT.
I think it was a penalty on O’Reilly on a tying goal too.
How our PP coach still have a job?

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 11:11 AM ET

Primis's avatar


If DET had taken 2 pts tonight, but only gotten 1 out of BOS, I get the feeling there would not be so many upset fans.  But because it was BUF…. fans are upset.  Optics I guess.  BUF is 5-4-1 in their last 10 though and probably wouldn’t be so far down in the standings had Eichel not gotten hurt and missed 20-some games.

DET has taken 7 of the last 8 possible points though.  That’s pretty remarkable given where they were just a week ago coming off that rough, long western road trip.  Let’s see where the NYR, BOS, and TOR games go I guess before we start talking about firing and waiving everyone again.  If they nab say 5 of the next 6 possible points again… they could definitely find themselves at least ahead of FLA in the division and things would get very interesting.

But if they take only say 1 point of the next possible 6, we’ll know for sure this was all an anomaly we can resume wishing the entire team and brass could be fired into the sun.

Posted by Primis on 01/21/17 at 11:11 AM ET


Nothing to do with Buffalo. We got 3 wins distributing the forward minutes properly and now again Blashill goes to his “defensive specialists” for all the minutes they can handle. No wonder we were in our zone most of the time when our 4 th line was on the ice. But they did have one good shift and scored, so I guess good job Blashill. And AA plays 10 minutes. I guessed he missed one defensive assignment.

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 11:19 AM ET


It was painfully obvious that they were playing not to get behind, playing not to lose, or whatever. That approach has been their biggest problem all year, along with the gross overuse of the “defensive” guys who somehow manage to give up leads.

The players need to rebel, because their worst enemy is the guy on the bench who really is clueless.

Posted by NewfieWing on 01/21/17 at 01:10 PM ET


I agree. In the previous 3 wins, we played kind of relaxed and Blashill did not do much coaching, he was just putting the best players on the ice as much as possible. Less coaching from Blashill seems to be a good thing. Then after 3 wins all of a sudden, there is hope for the playoffs and Blashill starts “coaching” again playing the grinders and bench players who can actually create and put the puck in the net.

Posted by VPalmer on 01/21/17 at 01:23 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Captain Hank needs to teach him to channel his rage and pick his battles or he’s going to end up labeled a super whiner like…say…Crosby (who has, as much as it hurts to say, matured… slightly) and not get the tough calls since the Refs will not be very fond of him.

Very true, and Larkin will not get the calls like Cindy does. Larkin stop the Cindy Whine, and step up your game. cool smirk

Posted by bigfrog on 01/21/17 at 09:30 PM ET

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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.