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Three Questions: Wings-Oilers

DRW.com's Michael Caples analyzes the Wings' 74th game

Wednesday, 03.25.2009 / 12:35 AM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Three Questions: Wings-Oilers
How did the Wings turn this one around?

Defenseman Jonathan Ericsson must like his surroundings when he is in Edmonton; it’s the only NHL city where he has scored a goal.  The Red Wings’ defensive prospect scored his first NHL goal last February in Edmonton, and his second happened in the same building. With the Wings trailing 1-0 in the third period, Ericsson took a pass from his defensive partner Brian Rafalski, and fired a shot towards the Edmonton goal.  A screen in front of the goal, which consisted of Johan Franzen and Edmonton Steve Staios, caused Ericsson’s shot to change direction.  It fooled goaltender Dwayne Roloson, who had been frustrating the Wings all night, and Ericsson’s second career goal tied up the contest.

Rafalski’s assist was note-worthy as well, and not just because it set up the goal.  It was the defenseman’s 56th point of the season, which is a career-high marker for one of the Wings’ leaders.  Rafalski was sitting at third place in the defensive points race prior to the night’s game.

How did the Wings take the lead?


Franzen and Marian Hossa teamed up to finally push the Wings into the lead with 1:58 remaining.  Franzen grabbed the puck near the Detroit bench, and rushed towards the Edmonton zone.  After putting a move on Ales Hemsky at the blue line, Franzen faked a shot and flung a pass to Hossa in the slot instead.  Using his lightning-like release, Hossa fired the puck past Roloson for his 37th goal of the season.

What turned out to be the goal of the night?


Thirty-two seconds after Hossa’s goal, the Wings scored again, and it seemed to be icing on the cake.  Pavel Datsyuk won an offensive-zone face-off back to captain Nicklas Lidstrom.  Lidstrom walked inside the blue line, and fired a shot towards the Edmonton goal.  The slapshot was blocked, but the puck ricocheted over to forward Valtteri Filppula, camped out on the right side of the goal.  Filppula fired the puck into the Edmonton goal, giving the Wings a two-goal lead with his 11th of the season.

However, Edmonton winger Ales Kotalik scored on a one-timer at the 19-minute mark to move the Oilers within one goal.  The Wings held on to get the win, but the goal served to be all the more important when the final buzzer rang.  It should serve as a reminder that ‘the game isn’t over ‘til it’s over’, and also how important late-game face-offs are.  If Datsyuk didn’t win that face-off, who knows if the Wings would be leaving Edmonton with two points.   

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 52 39 9 4 171 117 82
2 FLA 54 32 16 6 150 122 70
3 NYR 53 30 18 5 150 135 65
4 NYI 52 28 18 6 145 129 62
5 TBL 53 29 20 4 140 127 62
6 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
7 BOS 53 28 19 6 153 146 62
8 PIT 52 27 18 7 138 132 61
9 NJD 55 27 21 7 122 123 61
10 MTL 55 27 24 4 147 145 58
11 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
12 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
13 PHI 52 23 20 9 122 137 55
14 BUF 54 21 27 6 124 146 48
15 CBJ 55 21 28 6 137 170 48
16 TOR 52 19 24 9 120 144 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 52 18 20 26 38
H. Zetterberg 53 9 27 3 36
T. Tatar 52 16 17 -1 33
G. Nyquist 53 14 15 -2 29
P. Datsyuk 38 8 20 12 28
J. Abdelkader 53 14 13 -3 27
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 39 5 11 7 16
D. DeKeyser 49 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 20 10 4 .933 1.97
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89