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Three Questions: Wings-Kings

DRW.com's Michael Caples analyzes the Wings' 44th game

Friday, 01.16.2009 / 1:03 AM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Three Questions: Wings-Kings
How did the Wings win this one?

The Wings picked up their second win in as many nights with a big 4-0 win over Los Angeles Thursday night.  They were able to come away with a victory on no rest because everybody chipped in.  The Kings held the Wings top unit off the scoresheet, but the Wings’ grinders were waiting to pick up the slack.  Detroit’s forth line of Kirk Maltby, Kris Draper, and Tomas Kopecky had a big night on the scoresheet, with Maltby and Draper coming away with a goal and assist and Kopecky picking up one helper.  To be successful over the course of an 82-game schedule, all the forwards need to chip in some points when the top line sometimes can’t get it done.  Maltby and Draper had exceptional performances, and it was the first time since 2004 that both of them had a two-point night in the same game.

What was the save of the game?

Goaltender Ty Conklin announced very early on that he was going to give the Kings’ scorers fits on their home ice.  In the first big scoring chance of the game, LA’s two top scoring threats in Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar came in with the puck, looking to take the early lead.  Kopitar hit Brown with a pass right on the left side of Conklin’s crease for a redirect shot that looked to be heading into the back of the net.  Conklin had other ideas in mind, doing the splits to kick out his leg and deny Brown of a sure goal.  A few minutes later, Maltby scored, and the game was soon out of reach for LA.  Conklin made 23 saves on the evening to capture his fifth shutout of the season, and first in the road, but one of his first stops of the game won the game.

What was the goal-scoring trend in the big win?

The Wings had a lot of fun looking for back-door passes in their 4-0 win.  Detroit was able to control the puck and the flow of play easily, especially in their offensive zone.  Being able to control the play in the LA end allowed the Wings to look around for ideal passes, one of which being the ‘back-door pass’, where a player waits on the far post behind the goalie for a redirect goal into a wide-open net.  First it was Johan Franzen’s goal, when the Mule took a cross-crease feed from Henrik Zetterberg.  Then it was Jiri Hudler hitting Mikael Samuelsson as he snuck out from behind the goal to wait next to the post.  Goals like Franzen’s and Samuelsson’s mean that the offense is clicking right down to coach Mike Babcock’s playbook.


SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
T. Tatar 5 0 3 1 3
M. Green 5 1 1 -1 2
A. Athanasiou 5 1 0 1 1
G. Nyquist 5 1 0 2 1
H. Zetterberg 5 1 0 3 1
J. Abdelkader 5 1 0 -3 1
B. Richards 5 1 0 -4 1
D. Helm 5 1 0 -1 1
D. Larkin 5 1 0 -2 1
N. Kronwall 5 0 1 3 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 1 2 0 .945 1.36
J. Howard 0 2 0 .891 3.59