Breakdown: Wings beat Chicago, 3-2
The FactorThe Wings were down 1-0 in the second period, and staring down a five-on-three penalty kill for 1:53. The situation didn’t scare Niklas Kronwall, who stepped in front of a rocket from the point to help kill off the penalties. The Wings escaped, and then found themselves on a power play a few minutes later. That’s when captain Nicklas Lidstrom was able to tie up the contest with his first goal of the season. From then, it was all Red Wings.
Hockeytown HeroComing into the game, goaltending and team defense were hot topics surrounding Hockeytown. Goalie Chris Osgood reminded Wings' fans why he’s one of the top goalies in the game Thursday night, as he turned aside 32 shots to pick up his first win of the season. His best save came five minutes into the third period, when John Madden came flying in on a breakaway. Osgood did the splits to rob Madden with his left leg, and kept a 3-1 Detroit lead intact.
CatalystBrad Stuart was all over the ice in the Wings’ win, skating for 22:29. He spent 4:55 of that time on the penalty-kill, the most time of any Red Wing. He deserves a lot of credit for the Wings holding the Blackhawks to one goal on five different power-play opportunities. He was also a physical force, firing up the Wings and the Joe Louis Arena crowd with five hits, also a team-high.
Inside the Stats SheetThe most important numbers on the stats sheet Thursday was the zeroes in the scoring columns for the Blackhawks’ top talent. The Wings held Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Brian Campbell completely off the score sheet in the 3-2 win. All three had at least 20 minutes of ice-time in the contest.
Heard in the Locker RoomAfter the game, Osgood was asked if he believed tonight’s game was a ‘must-win’ or a statement game after the Wings started the season 0-2 in Sweden. Here’s what the Wings’ netminder had to say:
“It was a good test for us. To be honest, it felt like the season started today. Everything’s been pretty much a circus for us, and to come back here and get into some type of a routine and play in a game like we normally would was great. It was great to get the win, but do I think we played as good as we can? Definitely not.”