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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 WSH 54 40 10 4 178 124 84
2 FLA 56 32 18 6 153 132 70
3 NYR 55 31 18 6 157 140 68
4 DET 56 29 18 9 138 134 67
5 BOS 56 30 20 6 163 150 66
6 NJD 57 29 21 7 125 124 65
7 TBL 54 30 20 4 144 130 64
8 NYI 54 29 19 6 153 137 64
9 PIT 54 28 19 7 139 136 63
10 CAR 56 25 21 10 137 146 60
11 PHI 54 24 20 10 128 140 58
12 MTL 56 27 25 4 151 151 58
13 OTT 57 25 26 6 159 177 56
14 BUF 57 23 28 6 135 156 52
15 CBJ 57 23 28 6 144 175 52
16 TOR 54 20 25 9 127 151 49

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 54 18 20 25 38
H. Zetterberg 55 10 28 5 38
T. Tatar 54 16 17 -1 33
G. Nyquist 55 14 16 -1 30
P. Datsyuk 40 9 21 14 30
J. Abdelkader 55 14 15 -2 29
M. Green 47 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 41 5 11 6 16
D. DeKeyser 51 7 8 12 15
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 21 10 5 .933 1.94
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89