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Three Questions: Wings-Coyotes's Michael Caples analyzes the Wings' 51st game

Wednesday, 02.4.2009 / 10:15 PM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Three Questions: Wings-Coyotes
So it was Marian Hossa flag night?

All fans in attendance at tonight’s game received a free Hossa flag, and the man pictured on the giveaway put on quite a show. The Wings’ leader in goals potted two more Wednesday, giving him 28 on the season. He did so by using his stickhandling and shooting abilities that made him the prize of the free agency period last summer.

On his first goal, Hossa grabbed a drop pass from center Pavel Datsyuk, and fired a rocket of a wrist shot that went through defenseman Zbynek Michalek and goalie Ilja Bryzgalov. 

On his second (the prettiest goal of the night in my opinion), Hossa started with the puck deep in the Phoenix zone, and tricked former University of Michigan star Kevin Porter to follow him all the way up to the blue line. There, Hossa pulled the puck in, slammed on the brakes, and watched Porter drift past him. The star of the evening charged towards the Phoenix goal, holding off an opponent with one hand while controlling the puck with the other, then beat Bryzgalov short side with a quick wrist shot through a screen.

It should also be noted that Hossa drew the penalty in the final minute that gave the Red Wings the man-advantage and eventual win. Maneuvering deep within the Phoenix zone, Hossa forced Joel Perrault to haul him down, and the Wings made no mistake of capitalizing on their opportunity. Nicklas Lidstrom scored seven seconds later, off the Wings’ face-off win, to put the game away.

How did Henrik Zetterberg look in his first game back?

There might have been some concern for the Hockeytown faithful when Zetterberg disappeared from the Red Wings' roster a day before he signing the longest contract in team history. But there shouldn’t be; Zetterberg looked just fine in his return. The Wings’ assistant captain played 20-minutes, and seeing plenty of penalty-kill and power-play time. He scored a beautiful goal in the second period, taking a pass from Datsyuk to the right of the slot and beating Bryzgalov to the far post with a quick wrist shot. Zetterberg was physical in the corners, he was skating well, and he didn’t have any problems controlling the puck. In the closing seconds of the contest, defenseman Ed Jovanovski took a couple of cheap shots at Zetterberg, but he seemed to be OK.

What about Darren Helm?

Helm was called up from Grand Rapids on Tuesday and was in his first game since Nov. 26. The 22-year-old, in his third stint with the big league club this season, skated for 12-minutes against the Coyotes. He recorded four hits, two penalty minutes, and he drew a penalty near the end of the first period. The young forward showed off his speed throughout the contest, and if he stays up he may see more ice time as he gets re-acclimated to the Wings’ systems.


H. Zetterberg 77 17 49 -6 66
P. Datsyuk 63 26 39 12 65
T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
G. Nyquist 82 27 27 -11 54
J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38 is the official Web site of the Detroit Red Wings. Detroit Red Wings and are trademarks of the Detroit Red Wings. NHL, the NHL Shield and the word mark NHL Winter Classic are registered trademarks and Original Six is a trademark of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Detroit Red Wings and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.
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