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Sore Cleary returns from 'major' hit

Red Wings unable to convert on five-minute power play

Thursday, 05.9.2013 / 2:19 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - Managing Editor | DetroitRedWings.com
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Sore Cleary returns from \'major\' hit

Daniel Cleary was knocked out of the game in the second period on a hit by the Ducks' Daniel Winnik. Cleary returned for the third period. (Photo by Getty Images)

ANAHEIM, Calif. – The only thing more disappointing than the second-period hit on Daniel Cleary in Game 5 was the five-minute major, which followed, that the Red Wings didn’t capitalize on Wednesday at Honda Center.

“We created chances. I think we hit two posts. We had some other good chances there too but couldn’t really get that goal that would have helped,” Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg said. “Then they come in and score.”

With 5 ½ minutes left in the second period, and the Wings holding a 2-1 lead, Daniel Winnik slammed Cleary into the end boards behind the Detroit net. A five-minute boarding penalty was assessed to the Ducks’ forward, but not a game-misconduct.

Cleary was helped off the ice, but returned for the start of the third period, saying that his, “Whole left side was sore, shoulder, hand, ribs, neck, head. I didn’t see him coming at all.”

The Red Wings had three power-play opportunities on Wednesday, scoring on their first chance when Johan Franzen rammed in his own rebound to give Detroit a 1-0 lead early in the first period. But it was the blown chances on the five-minute major that frustrated the Wings the most.

They maintained pressure in the offensive zone, however, they only had one Zetterberg shot to show for it before the 5-on-4 ended when Brendan Smith was caught holding Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf.

To have the Ducks then tie the score with their own power-play goal – just 13-seconds after Winnik’s penalty expired – only compounded the Wings’ disappointment.

“We could have done some different things,” said Wings coach Mike Babcock, of the second-period power play. “In hindsight, you could do lots of things. You could go with your first two groups, call a timeout and go with them again. We put a group in between. We took a penalty. We didn't score on the power play. That was the bottom line.”

Anaheim didn’t make it easy for the Red Wings. First, the Ducks jumped on Detroit early, sending 18 first-period shots toward goalie Jimmy Howard. While the Red Wings weathered the offensive barrage the Ducks’ defense was stingy in the last two periods.

For the third time in this Western Conference quarterfinal series, the Ducks blocked at least 17 Red Wings’ shots, giving Anaheim 85 in the series. Only the New York Rangers have more blocks (88) in the first-round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The Wings’ woes continued into the third as they managed to get five shots through the Ducks’ defense that blocked seven other attempts.

“I thought we had a lot of opportunity in the third to get it done, a lot of chances,” Cleary said. “We let it slip away, for sure. I thought we played real well. Just got to win the game on Friday but I thought we played well tonight. We deserved better than that.”

The Wings will need better than that Friday at Joe Louis Arena if they’re to extend this series to a Game 7 on Sunday in Anaheim.

“I've been through a lot of elimination games,” Cleary said. “The key is just having no regrets, go out and play hard, you can't play nervous. Play loose and confident and play our game.”

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 82 13 37 -15 50
D. Larkin 80 23 22 11 45
T. Tatar 81 21 24 4 45
G. Nyquist 82 17 26 -2 43
J. Abdelkader 82 19 23 -16 42
M. Green 74 7 28 -6 35
B. Richards 68 10 18 4 28
D. Helm 77 13 13 -2 26
N. Kronwall 64 3 23 -21 26
R. Sheahan 81 14 11 -8 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 27 16 6 .921 2.33
J. Howard 14 14 5 .906 2.80