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The overnight report: Red Wings-Islanders wrap-up and Wings-Preds set-up

The Red Wings earned a hard-fought 5-4 victory over the New York Islanders on Friday, snapping a 5-game winless streak, and the Wings will attempt to keep the good times rolling against the Nashville Predators this evening (8 PM EST on FSD/FS Tennessee/97.1 FM).

In terms of Friday night's game, the Red Wings would argue that they've earned the kind of wild bounce that yielded Danny DeKeyser's game-winning goal with 27.9 seconds remaining in regulation; the Islanders rued the play, and felt that Friday's loss was something of a heartbreaker, as they told Newsday's Laura Albanese:

DeKeyser shot in the general vicinity of the net and the puck took care of everything else, bouncing off Nick Leddy and then Thomas Hickey before making its way past Thomas Greiss.

“That’s tough,” coach Doug Weight said. “No one is in front of the net and two shin pads. That’s a tough one. It’s fluky. That’s hockey. It’s just sour. We were rolling and we fought our way back.”

“It changed direction twice and it stinks,” Hickey said. “There’s nothing else to say, honestly. We didn’t play what we’re capable of, but I still think we played well enough to win the game. Right now, it’s just disappointing.”

Jason Chimera had given the Islanders a smattering of hope, tipping in the equalizer with 2:26 left after Darren Helm lost control of the puck near the crease.

But the Islanders, who haven’t won once this season after trailing in the third period, proved that no matter how much seemingly has changed under Weight, there’s still so much more to go. They fell to 6-10-4 on the road and have a season-defining test before them: After two home games, they will play 13 of their next 16 on the road.

Hickey continued while speaking with NHL.com's Dave Hogg...

Islanders forward Jason Chimera, playing his 1,000th NHL game, tied it 4-4 with 2:26 remaining in the third period.

"This feels like a punch in the stomach," Hickey said. "Every defenseman gives up goals off deflections, but Jason had given us a perfect script by tying the game on his night, and we couldn't even get a point for him."

New York (22-18-9) lost for the first time in regulation under coach Doug Weight (5-1-1). Greiss made 19 saves.

"That's a tough way to lose, but I know I scored goals off bounces like that," Weight said. "Thomas played well, so we can't blame him. It's just a fluky game."

Anthony Mantha, Henrik Zetterberg and Tomas Tatar each had two points for Detroit (21-21-9), and Petr Mrazek made 32 saves for his first win as a starter since a 6-4 victory against the Anaheim Ducks on Dec. 17.

And Reuters' recap will wrap up our survey of the Islanders' perspectives...

Islanders forward Jason Chimera, playing his 1,000th NHL game, pounced on a turnover by Detroit forward Darren Helm and chipped the puck between the post and the pad of Wings goalie Petr Mrazek with 2:26 left in third period to tie the game.

"Their third goal was directly my fault," Chimera said. "I gave it right to the guy (Detroit's Anthony Mantha). You want to make amends for your mistakes, so it felt nice to get that one back.

"We had some momentum going. It felt like we might take it to overtime at least and a crappy bounce there at the end."

The Islanders suffered their first loss in regulation since Doug Weight replaced Jack Capuano as coach. They had been 5-0-1 under Weight prior to Friday.

"I'm at a loss for words," Hickey said. "Jason scoring the goal to tie it up couldn't have been a better script for us. I'm just sort of sick to my stomach over that (final goal).

With the AP's recap serving as our pivot point between the Islanders and Red Wings' perspectives:

The Detroit Red Wings desperately needed a break — and got one late against the New York Islanders.

Danny DeKeyser scored with 27.9 remaining in regulation, lifting Detroit to a 5-4 win Friday night.

His shot from the left side of the left circle caromed off two Islanders defencemen, Nick Leddy and Thomas Hickey, and into the net.

"That’s about as lucky as you can get," DeKeyser acknowledged. "Scoring a goal off two guys from the other team is a first for me."

Islanders coach Doug Weight, a former NHL player, said he had seen a goal just like that many times in his playing career.

"I was probably a benefactor with my shot," Weight said.

For the Red Wings, the game was a tale of resilient play--as well as lucky bounces--as they told the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan...

“He (Zetterberg) did a good job of winning the draw,” DeKeyser said. “It hit a couple of guys going to the net. You just try to throw it on net.”

Just as coaches preach, from youth hockey all the way to the NHL.

“If you shoot the puck at the net you get some bounces sometimes,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “Obviously we got a bounce on that one. Our compete level was real good, our energy was real good. We were a little loose, we have to be a little bit tighter, but our compete and energy level was great.”

The Islanders tied the game 4-4 on Jason Chimera’s goal in his 1,000th NHL game. Chimera capitalized on a misplay between Mike Green and Darren Helm, with Chimera putting in the loose puck for his 11th goal at 17:34 of the third period.

“It’s deflating, you don’t want to get scored on late, you want to salt that thing away,” Blashill said. “But it’s been a resilient bunch, that’s for sure. They’ve been a bunch that doesn’t quit.”

The victory stopped a five-game Red Wings losing streak (0-2-3), and enabled them to escape the bottom of the Eastern Conference.

“Every point is important right now, especially where we are in the standings,” said forward Anthony Mantha, who had a goal, assist and was plus-3. “We have to keep battling and keep playing better and better.”

And the Wings continued while speaking with the Free Press's Helene St. James:

The Wings generated good offensive zone time to start the [second] period but had a devil of a time landing a shot on net. Mrazek was busier, making saves and playing the puck behind his net. Then came a stretch that saw Zetterberg’s line with Mantha and Nyquist stay in the offensive zone their entire shift.
“It was a fun shift to be part of,” Zetterberg said. “You are in the zone a long time and then Helm’s line just took over and kept the puck in there for quiet a time, too. When we are playing good, that is when we are creating lots of stuff and spending a lot of time in the o-zone.”
Blashill said, “Z was a total warrior. Nyqui and Mantha were great.”

The reward came on the next shift, when Helm one-timed a nice feed from Tomas Tatar, evening the score at the 12-minute mark. The Wings fed off the momentum with another goal two minutes later. Mantha poked the puck to get it down low to Tatar, then raced to the right side to score.

“I read the play, intercepted the pass,” Mantha said. “I saw Tuna on the breakaway, so I decided to give it to him. He bought just enough time to give it back and I had an open net.”

Tatar said he was “panicking a little bit. I wasn’t sure if I'm going to shoot or pass. But I decide to pass and I was just waiting for the D-man to clear his stick out of the way. Sauced it to Mo and it went in.”

The Wings went on a fifth penalty kill soon after, because of a ridiculous goalie interference call on Nielsen.

The Islanders would score on the power play, but the Wings recovered--and they weren't going to bite on the fact that Tim Peel and Dan O'Halloran's interpretations of the rules seemed to change on a shift-by-shift basis, as they told CBS Detroit's Will Burtchfield:

New York scored on the ensuing power play, but not before Nielsen had a long chat with one of the referees on his way to the box.

Blashill smiled knowingly when asked about the officiating afterward.

“The one that comes to mind is just the goalie interference, the Nielsen one. He got bumped in. Now, it’s a tough call. Those are things that happen real fast and you’ve gotta fight through tough calls at times.

“I think if he could have seen the replay like we can, he wouldn’t have made the call, but he doesn’t get that opportunity. That’s why it’s a tough job,” Blashill said.

Captain Zetterberg echoed his coach, explaining poor calls aren’t worth worrying about.

“When you’re in the game you don’t think about it. Sometimes you get mad at them but that’s the way it goes sometimes,” he said. “Tomorrow, we might have them on our side.”

Friday night, the bounces were on the Wings' side, as DetroitRedWings.com's Dana Wakiji noted:

1. Danny DeKeyser: Everyone's been saying that the Wings need to have more of a shot mentality, just throw it to the net and see what happens. With 27.9 seconds remaining in regulation, Henrik Zetterberg won the face-off and got the puck back to DeKeyser. DeKeyser's shot went off of Nick Leddy and Thomas Hickey and into the net. It was DeKeyser's first goal since Dec. 4 at the Islanders, also the game-winner in a 5-4 victory. The one in Brooklyn was in overtime.

Quotable: "I don't really what to say about it other than it was a pinball. Z called the play, it was D down wall, we tried it right before that with (Mike) Greener. He did a good job winning the draw and then we had a couple guys going to the net. Late in the game and the ice is bad throw it on the net and it went in. That's about as lucky as you can get. Scoring a goal off two guys from the other team is a first for me." - DeKeyser

Quotable II: "That was like a punch in the stomach. I'm speechless. That happens to all defensemen at times, but Jason (Chimera) gave us a perfect script by tying it on his night, and then we can't even get a point for him." - Hickey

The coach would take it, too, as he told the Windsor Star's Bob Duff:

“I know if you shoot the puck at the net you’ll get some bounces sometimes,” Blashill said. “We obviously got a bounce on that one.”

Despite falling behind for the 31st time in 51 games, Blashill felt his team came to play on Friday.

“I thought our compete level was really good,” Blashill said. “I thought our energy was really good. I thought we were a little bit loose. I thought we gave up … now, they pushed hard, too. We’ve got to be a little tighter but I thought from a compete and effort level it was great.”


Highlights: NHL.com posted a 4:32 highlight clip...

And a 6:58 "condensed game":

Post-game: MSG Networks posted clips of Jason Chimera and Josh Bailey's post-game remarks and coach Doug Weight's post-game interview with Shannon Hogan;

Fox Sports Detroit posted clips of Danny DeKeyser's post-game interview with Trevor Thompson...

And post-game comments from Henrik Zetterberg...

And Petr Mrazek:

MLive's Ansar Khan posted Danny DeKeyser's post-game scrum...

Zetterberg's scrum...

And Anthony Mantha's post-game comments:

The Free Press's Helene St. James posted a clip of Zetterberg, DeKeyser, Mantha and coach Jeff Blashill's post-game comments:

Photos: The Free Press posted a 19-image gallery;

The Detroit News posted a 21-image gallery;

Newsday posted a 16-image gallery;

ESPN posted a 16-image gallery;

And NHL.com and the Red Wings' website posted 30-image galleries.


Here's the Game Summary...

And the Event Summary


Red Wings notebooks and also of Red Wings-related note: The Free Press's Helene St. James wrote an update regarding Frans Nielsen's status for tonight's game...

Frans Nielsen did not return after the second period of the 5-4 victory over New York Islanders at Joe Louis Arena. He suffered an upper-body injury that leaves him questionable for Saturday's game at Nashville (8 p.m., FSD).

“He is going to test it in the morning,” coach Jeff Blashill said.

Blashill wasn’t sure when Nielsen got hurt, but said he didn’t think it was when Nielsen got bumped into Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss in the second period.

Nielsen was an All-Star this season, and has 10 goals and 16 assists in 52 games. He is an excellent two-way player, plays penalty kill and power play, and makes his teammates better.

“He plays a lot of minutes, is really a workhorse for us,” Henrik Zetterberg said. "Hopefully he is fine and ready to go tomorrow.”

As did the Windsor Star's Bob Duff:

The Wings lost center Frans Nielsen, who suffered an upper body injury late in the second period and did not return for the third period.

His status for Saturday’s game at Nashville is uncertain.

“We’ll see tomorrow,” Blashill said. “He’s going to test it in the morning.”

If Nielsen can’t go, Tomas Jurco is available and if if turns out to be something long-term, Steve Ott (shoulder) could be activated from the injured list.

“Ott’s close,” Blashill said.


Red Wings-Predators set-up: The Red Wings head into tonight's game against the 25-18-and-8 Nashville Predators  (8 PM EST on FSD/FS Tennessee/97.1 FM) facing a team on a helluva roll. The Predators have won 5 of their past 7 games (5-1-and-1), with their most recent win coming in the form of a 2-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday.

According to NHL.com, the Predators are 14-5-and-6 at home and have won 8 of their past 11 home games, but they're also a team in some flux, as NashvillePredators.com's Brooks Bratten noted:

The Predators placed forward Mike Ribeiro on Waivers on Friday. Head Coach Peter Laviolette addressed the move following Friday's practice.

"Mike has been such an important part of the team and a good part of the team," Laviolette said. "I think the lineup decisions that we've been making as of late have found Mike on the outside and he didn't want to finish that way being in the stands. He had a request for a trade and we tried to help him with that and so he's on waivers today to see if somebody is going to pick him up."

Defenseman Roman Josi (IR) and Miikka Salomaki (IR) once again joined their teammates on the ice for Friday's practice. Forward line rushes remained unchanged from Thursday night's game; Josi skated with Yannick Weber on defense and Anthony Bitetto was paired with Brad Hunt.

The Predators' lineup for Thursday's game looked like this, per NashvillePredators.com's Thomas Willis:


Filip Forsberg - Ryan Johansen - Viktor Arvidsson

Austin Watson - Mike Fisher - Craig Smith

Colin Wilson - Calle Jarnkrok - James Neal

Cody McLeod - Colton Sissons - Harry Zolnierczyk


Matt Irwin - Ryan Ellis

Mattias Ekholm - P.K. Subban

Anthony Bitetto - Yannick Weber


Pekka Rinne

Juuse Saros

The Predators' "story" going into tonight's game is the play of their top line, as noted by the Tennessean's Adam Vingan:

Ryan Johansen considered the question asked of him. The Predators center and his linemates, forwards Filip Forsberg and Viktor Arvidsson, had accounted for both goals in the Predators' shutout victory against the Oilers on Thursday, so what did he attribute their success to?

"Well, we're all really good looking," Johansen said. "That kind of says it all."

Vanity notwithstanding, the Predators' top line, consisting of the team's top three scorers, has announced its emergence with dominant offensive play.

"There's a lot of talent in those two," said Johansen, who leads Nashville with 38 points. "It's a lot of fun playing with them. You never know what's going to happen out there. They're so talented. You're always expecting the unexpected from them. It's been fun lately having some success together, and hopefully we can continue that."

When together, Forsberg, Johansen and Arvidsson have outscored opposing lines by eight goals at even strength this season, according to datarink.com, controlling nearly 60 percent of total shot attempts.

Having Nashville's two heaviest shooters in Arvidsson and Forsberg, who average almost six combined shots per game and have 30 goals between them this season, helps in that regard. Johansen's dual-threat playmaking ability adds another threatening element.

Arvidsson's individual development is the Predators' most pleasant surprise this season. Expected to serve in a secondary scoring role, the 23-year-old has been Nashville's most consistent forward, exhibiting boundless energy and tenacity.

"I think I'm being more consistent than I've ever been in my career," said Arvidsson, who scored the Predators' first goal and his 13th this season Thursday by blazing down the right-wing boards and rocketing a slap shot past Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot.

Looking back toward Thursday's Predators win, the Associated Press and NHL.com provide recaps, and NHL.com posted a highlight clip of the game as well...

And the Associated Press's game preview will serve as a fine "bridge":

[Viktor] Arvidsson’s steady effort and production is one reason that Nashville (25-18-8) is 8-2-1 in its last 11 games and has picked up points in six straight home games. The Predators enter this one three points ahead of St. Louis for third place in the Central Division and nine points behind Chicago for second place.

Meanwhile, Detroit (21-21-9) has work to do if it is going to extend its playoff streak to 26 consecutive seasons. Even after a 5-4 win Friday night over the New York Islanders in Joe Louis Arena, the Red Wings are seven points out of the Eastern Conference’s last playoff spot and would have to jump over six teams to get there.

Outshot 36-24 by by the Islanders, the Red Wings prevailed when Danny DeKeyser’s point shot caromed off two Islanders defenders and past goalie Thomas Griess at 19:32.

“We obviously got a bounce on that one,” Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. “I thought our compete level was really good. I thought our energy was really good. We’ve got to be a little tighter, but this has been a resilient bunch, that’s for sure.”

The Red Wings got a goal and an assist each from Henrik Zetterberg and Anthony Mantha, plus two assists from Tomas Tatar and 32 saves from Petr Mrazek. But they lost Frans Nielsen after the second period to an upper-body injury and his status for Saturday night won’t be known until hours before puck drop.

Detroit has won five straight meetings in the last three seasons against Nashville, including a 5-3 decision on Oct. 21 at home in a game where the Predators lost multiple skaters as the evening progressed due to food poisoning.

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink


PierreC's avatar

The only positive about this one was the win…

Or was it ?

Disappointing because the player i want to shine didn’t play. AA,Vanek, Larks.

I still don’t understand this coach but i understand these 3 players; they don’t care anymore cause they know this coach won’t be around next season.

Vanek has given up this team..and it’s not his fault. He had all the motivation in the world just 2 weeks ago, but Something happened since then.

He is a goner that’s for sure, and that’s too bad cause when his mind is all on the ice he is by far the best player of this team.

The last 4 or 5 games he’s been on non factor. I caught Vanek and AA discussing on the bench, like they were talking about the math teacher and how bad he is or vanek saying to AA “Don’t worry kid next season he won’t be around…and me too !

And Mrazek is still bad, very bad.  Yes he made a few good saves but he is so easy to beat that their no way to trust this guy.

And on defense Green was hilarious tonight. Does he want to get trade ?? Maybe he has too much icetime i don’t know.

Anyway we won and i’m still mad.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada on 02/04/17 at 01:25 AM ET

Chet's avatar

exactly how i feel. they played and looked like garbage as usual and didn’t deserve to win at all. and if you believe, as i do, that making the playoffs are a pipe dream, then i don’t care if they lose every game the rest of the way.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/04/17 at 02:06 AM ET

Shanny_Fan's avatar

I thought Nike, Tats, and Z all played pretty well which was nice to see out of the first two who have been invisible for most of the year. I agree that Green and Razor were mostly terrible tonight. Something is seriously wrong with razors game - its like hes developed hockey alzheimers and cant remember where he put his net every couple of minutes. I thought Jensen was our best defenseman, nice game from him after they waived Marchy.

It was nice to have a positive finish for once, even if it was a plinko goal.

Posted by Shanny_Fan on 02/04/17 at 02:38 AM ET


Remember AA saying last year that he had to try and stay loosened up on television timeouts by getting off the bench and skating around and that was when he was playing 9 minutes a game. This is probably worse for Vanek and they were less than 8. I believe this is Blashill’s response to Ansar Khan’s newspaper article about his mismanagement of ice time for these same two players during the Devils game. He’s risking muscle pulls to these players. BLASHILL YOU ARE THE BIGGEST LOSER At this point, my question is what the hell do you need to do to get fired!

Posted by stateofmifan on 02/04/17 at 02:58 AM ET

Chet's avatar

if he goes it’ll be in the off season.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/04/17 at 03:34 AM ET

Alan's avatar

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/04/17 at 03:34 AM ET

Aye. Exactly this. KH isn’t the kind of person to make a shrewd move like that. He’ll wait until we miss the playoffs, and after the exit meetings, he’ll leave a note on Blash’s desk telling him to pack his things and be on his way.

‘Course, if we manage to make the playoffs for our 26th straight appearance, even if it’s another one-and-done, Blash can expect to keep his job, and we should expect him to. KH signed him to a four year deal. Why fire him after two if he doesn’t have to?

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/04/17 at 04:03 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

2 points.  Captain Hank really came alive after getting leveled…by his own teammate. 

Hopefully Franz isn’t too banged up.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 02/04/17 at 09:27 AM ET

Primis's avatar

‘Course, if we manage to make the playoffs for our 26th straight appearance, even if it’s another one-and-done, Blash can expect to keep his job, and we should expect him to. KH signed him to a four year deal. Why fire him after two if he doesn’t have to?

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/04/17 at 04:03 AM ET

Look, if DET gets into the playoffs at this point, I don’t know that Blashill *should* be fired.  It will take quite the run, and if they go on a run like that I just don’t see them doing so somehow IN SPITE OF Blashill’s coaching.  It’d mean the bulb went on in Jeff’s head at some point and he started wringing the most out of the guys…

Posted by Primis on 02/04/17 at 10:05 AM ET


We won yesterday despite Blashill. Nyquist and Tatar were very good.

Posted by VPalmer on 02/04/17 at 10:30 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Anyway we won and i’m still mad.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada

It’s been that kind of season – at least it’s been that way since their early six-game win streak ended. And here’s one reason to be mad about putting all of that effort into a win right now…

...if you believe, as i do, that making the playoffs are a pipe dream, then i don’t care if they lose every game the rest of the way.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen

Exactly. Before last night they were 28th in the league. Now they’s 26th, one point behind NJ and with a game in hand. So they went from the #3 pick next June to the #5 pick, and a smaller chance of winning the lottery. In a weak draft year, that makes a difference.

On the subject of this year’s draft, I’ve seen mock drafts where Vegas gets a top-three pick this year. Does anyone know if that’s true? If it is, the Wings would drop down one more pick.

Anyway, I can see the Wings putting on a heroic push, led by Hank’s determination more than anything Blashill might do. In the end, they’re get the #11 or #12 pick and choose some small, “skilled,” offensive-minded forward who will spend five years in the minors before being brought up to Detroit where they’ll try to turn him into a 4th-line grinder.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 02/04/17 at 11:27 AM ET


I read somewhere that Vegas cannot pick “further than 6th”.

Posted by VPalmer on 02/04/17 at 11:32 AM ET


Nyq and Tats reaffirmed their trade value last night.
Sell Kenny. Sell!

Posted by Ventr on 02/04/17 at 11:50 AM ET

PierreC's avatar

Anyway, I can see the Wings putting on a heroic push, led by Hank’s determination more than anything Blashill might do. In the end, they’re get the #11 or #12 pick and choose some small, “skilled,” offensive-minded forward who will spend five years in the minors before being brought up to Detroit where they’ll try to turn him into a 4th-line grinder.
    Posted by
    from Grand Rapids, MI on 02/04/17 at 11:27 AM ET

i can’t imagine that. We are too deep in a mess right now. When we use to do that in reason seasons we had some unity, we played as a group, a heroic push was Something to expect.

Not this year, the funk is too deep.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada on 02/04/17 at 12:28 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

i can’t imagine that. We are too deep in a mess right now.

Posted by PierreC from Montreal, Canada

You’re probably right that the 11th or 12th pick is probably too low for where the Wings should end up. But after watching Hank last night, he looks like a man on a mission to win as many games as possible. And, for once, that’s not a good thing.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 02/04/17 at 01:39 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

I read somewhere that Vegas cannot pick “further than 6th”.

Posted by VPalmer on 02/04/17 at 11:32 AM ET

Thanks VP, but I finally found info on puckprose.com about where Vegas will pick. “In addition to choosing 30 players (one from each team), the Vegas Golden Knights will be awarded the third-highest odds of obtaining the first overall selection in the NHL Entry Draft. Las Vegas will select in the third spot in each subsequent round.”

So, in the first round, that means it’s a crap shoot for them where their position will be. It will depend solely on where the lottery places them. So the Wings might pick before them, but probably won’t.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 02/04/17 at 02:10 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.