Three Questions: Wings-Ducks
DRW.com's Michael Caples analyzes the Wings' 43rd game
Halfway through the third period, Dan Cleary took it upon himself to tie up the game. The tough forward, who has been playing on the wing with Henrik Zetterberg and Marian Hossa, grabbed the puck in the Anaheim corner, and started to move up the boards towards the hash marks. Protecting the puck from Ducks’ captain Scott Niedermayer, Cleary pulled a toe drag move on Bobby Ryan and headed towards the center of the ice. At the top of the circle, Cleary fired off a quick snap shot, and picked his spot with precision – beating goaltender J.S. Giguere top shelf right off the cross bar. From that point forth, it was all Wings as they pulled away for the 4-3 win.
What was the play of the night?
The Ducks sent a late flurry of action Chris Osgood’s way, and he stood his ground in front of the Detroit net to preserve the win. His most impressive save came in the last 20 seconds, when he robbed Corey Perry of a sure goal to tie the game. Perry’s eyes must have lit up when he watched a rebound land right on his stick, with an empty net in front of him. But Osgood dove across the crease, stretching his leg and glove arm out, and knocked away the Perry shot. Osgood turned away 25 shots to capture the win on the road, but that stop served as the most important and the most timely.
What was the goal of the night?
The game-winning goal of the night was also the most impressive. Johan Franzen might be getting a call from the Tigers soon if he keeps scoring goals out of midair. Franzen scored his second midair goal of the month by smacking in a rebound from a Pavel Datysuk shot. Franzen hit the puck over Giguere’s shoulder, just below the cross bar. The goal was under video review, but it was deemed a good goal by the video reviewers. Franzen should be used to having to wait on his goals, after a tally in Minnesota on January 3 was reviewed as well.