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Up-to-the minute updates and insights from the Red Wings locker room at home and on the road. By Chuck Pleiness of The Macomb Daily.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Wings lose in shootout

CHICAGO -- Deserts aren't the only homes for mirages. The Detroit Red Wings saw a beautiful mirage, Saturday night, on the ice of the United Center.
Shortly after thinking that they saw a victory, the Red Wings were staring at the reality of a 4-3 shootout loss.
Leading the host Blackhawks by two goals early in the third period, the Red Wings thought that they saw the goal that would put their victory on ice. On the power play, Tomas Holmstrom banged the puck in, but referee Dan Marouelli blew the play dead with an inadvertent whistle.
Later on the same power play, Blackhawk James Wisniewski scored a short-handed marker -- off a 2-on-1 feed from Kevyn Adams -- to draw Chicago within 3-2.
Then with 3:40 left in regulation time, former Red Wing Robert Lang snapped a wrist shot over goalie Dominik Hasek's glove for a 3-3 tie. Detroit had squandered a 3-1 third-period lead.
In the shootout, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg and Jiri Hudler were stymied by Chicago goalie Nikolai Khabibulin. Rookie Patrick Kane scored on one of two Chicago shots.
"We were looking pretty good there … Went ahead 4-1 and thought we had the game won, but we didn't get that one," said Detroit coach Mike Babcock. "It was one of those games all night long where I didn't think we were as good as we could be and yet we had every opportunity to win the game and we let it slip away."
Detroit rode its power play for the second straight game, scoring two with the man-advantage. That gives the Red Wings four power-play goals in their two games this season. Last season, it took the Red Wings seven games to score four power-play goals, going 0-for-11 with the man-advantage in their first two games.
Five minutes into the game came Brian Rafalski's first goal as a Red Wings -- a slap shot through a Holmstrom screen. Nicklas Lidstrom scored on a 4-on-4 early in the second period to double Detroit's advantage.
Five minutes later, Red Wing Johan Franzen limped off the ice with an injured right knee. Franzen closed on Chicago's Tuomo Ruutu as he carried the puck. Ruutu, however, was tripped from behind by Datsyuk, falling on Franzen's leg and buckling the Red Wing's knee.
Franzen did not return to the game. The extent of his injury will be determined by an MRI today.
Franzen was limping slightly after the game and compared the injury to one to his left knee last season that happened on a late hit by Willie Mitchell. That injury -- labeled more serious than this one by Franzen -- kept him out of nine games.
"I had almost the same kind of thing last year ... (but) that was worse," said Franzen. "It's OK right now. It hurts a little bit right now, but I've got pain-killers."
Ruutu scored the Blackhawks' first goal in two games this season halfway through the second period to draw Chicago within 2-1.
One minute later, however, Holmstrom scored on Detroit's fifth power play of the game, deflecting Rafalski's slap shot in.
That wound up being just a prelude for Chicago's two-goal third-period rally and then Kane's shootout winner.
"I went down, closed my five-hole and he made a move to the backhand," said Hasek of the shootout goal. "What can I say?"
Wisniewski got into a fight with Detroit's Dallas Drake 5:10 into the game. It was Drake's second fight in two games this season. The Red Wings had a total of 16 fighting majors as a team in the past two seasons combined.
Detroit returns home for three home games, starting with a Monday game against the Edmonton Oilers.


Anonymous jaster said...

I haven't seen any irages in my cakes or pies yet. Weird. *wink, wink, smiley face*

October 7, 2007 at 12:18 AM 

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