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Three Questions: Wings-Penguins

DRW.com analyzes Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals

Friday, 06.12.2009 / 11:29 PM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Three Questions: Wings-Penguins
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What went wrong?

In a winner-take-all Game 7, all it takes is for one strange bounce to completely change the series.  And that’s what happened early in the second period, when an attempted break-out pass from the Wings hit Evgeni Malkin’s stick and ricocheted into Maxime Talbot’s stick right in front of goaltender Chris Osgood.  Talbot made no mistake with his seemingly unlimited time in front of the goal, beating Osgood to give the Penguins the all-important first goal.

All of a sudden, the Wings were playing catch-up, and were forced to start pressing.  That’s what led to the second goal, when Brad Stuart pinched and someone missed a coverage assignment.  Talbot once again was in the right spot at the right time, and he rushed down the ice.  On a two-on-one, Talbot saw that Niklas Kronwall took the passing lane away, so he fired the puck top-shelf to beat Osgood and give the Penguins a 2-0 lead. 

The Wings made a surge in the third period, outshooting the Penguins 7-1.  Jonathan Ericsson scored with seven minutes remaining, but it was too little, too late for the Wings.  Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury made the saves down the stretch and frustrated the Wings’ offense.

Who was the Wings’ unsung hero of the postseason?


Goaltender Chris Osgood turned in a phenomenal postseason, and will get the recognition he deserves.  But Darren Helm was one of the reasons the Wings got as far as they did.  Helm didn’t score many goals for the Wings (four goals and one assist), but his energy lifted the team.  Helm led the entire NHL in hits in the postseason, with 118.  He flew around the ice, causing problems night after night on the forecheck.  He would go after any opponent, even gigantic 6’7” Hal Gill.  And the goals that he did have were huge momentum-swinging plays for the Wings.

What’s next?

The Wings will go home and rest up for the 2009-10 season, but it will be a busy summer for general manager Ken Holland.  He locked up Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen to long-term deals before the playoffs began, but now he has to figure out a way to keep as many of the Red Wings as he can.  Marian Hossa will be the most talked about of the potential free agents - will he stay for another shot at a Stanley Cup?  But Holland will also be on the phone with agents for Jiri Hudler, Mikael Samuelsson, Chris Chelios and Ty Conklin.  It might be a slightly different team when the Wings head out to training camp, but Holland and his staff have done a great job of building a team that will be competitive year after year.   

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
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
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38

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