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Breakdown: Blue Jackets-Wings

Dec. 26, 2009 at Joe Louis Arena

Saturday, 12.26.2009 / 9:51 PM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Breakdown: Blue Jackets-Wings

With the Wings looking to break the tie in the third period, forward Todd Bertuzzi was in the right place at the right time. The Wings were creating chances in the Columbus zone, so Bertuzzi headed to the left post, and stopped there. Brian Rafalski fired a shot that went wide of the goal, but hit the end boards and bounced right to Bertuzzi. The Wings' power forward gathered in the puck and fired it into the empty net, giving the Wings the lead, and eventually the win.

Bertuzzi was the hero Saturday night, scoring the game-winner, and the Wings first goal, as well. The man known as 'Bert' got the Wings on the board in the second period, when he took a pass from Pavel Datsyuk in behind the Columbus defense, and deked goaltender Mathieu Garon out of his pads. The goals were Bertuzzi's 11th and 12th of the season, and they were huge for the Wings.

Jimmy Howard continues to excel between the pipes for Detroit. Howard made 14 saves in the first period to keep the Wings in the game. Then he made five in the second, and nine in the third, to help them hold on to the one-goal lead. He's making the saves when it counts, and he's making it hard for coach Mike Babcock to take him out.

In the past two seasons, Bertuzzi has had 14 and 15 goals, respectively. In only 38 games this season, he's already at 12.

After the game, Bertuzzi talked about his team's struggles in the first period, and how they turned it around for the remaining 40 minutes. Here's what he had to say:

"I think we were pretty disappointed with our start. We didn't come out and do anything that we wanted to do, and that was pretty embarrassing, so it was nice that we turned it around and came out with a little more jump and fire, and just tried to get more shots."

Valtteri Filppula made his return to the line-up Saturday night, after missing time due to a wrist injury. Filppula had an early scoring chance, when he got a shot through Garon's legs, but missed the net. He had 17:42 worth of ice-time, recording three shots and two hits. He showed some signs of rust, but he was a boost to the Red Wings' forward units.

The Wings travel to Columbus for a quick rematch with the Blue Jackets on Monday. They return to the Joe for a New Year's Eve match-up against the Colorado Avalanche. For tickets, click here.


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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