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Five-minute kill sparks Wings' win

With Legwand gone, Red Wings penalty kill shut door late on Penguins

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 11:50 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - Managing Editor | DetroitRedWings.com
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Five-minute kill sparks Wings\' win

Red Wings forward David Legwand is led to Detroit's bench by linesman Greg Devorski. (Photo by Getty Images)

DETROIT David Legwand’s major penalty late in regulation set off one of the most intense five-minutes of the Red Wings season Thursday night.

Legwand, who was acquired from Nashville at the trade deadline, was assessed a five-minute penalty and a 10-minute game misconduct for butt-ending Pittsburgh forward Evgeni Malkin with 3:46 left in the third period of a tied game.

Fortunately for the Red Wings, their penalty killers played amazingly, which helped set up Detroit’s thrilling 5-4 overtime win with four-tenths of a second showing on the clock.

The Penguins were pressing as time dwindled in the third. But one by one, the Wings’ PK stifled Pittsburgh’s loaded power play of Malkin, Sidney Crosby and James Neal.

Luke Glendening blocked a shot by Olli Maatta, then Kyle Quincey prevented Malkin from getting a shot off from the side of the net, and Cory Emmerton blocked an attempt by Matt Niskanen.

For an encore, defenseman Danny DeKeyser went stick on stick with Crosby as the Pens’ captain attempted to cruise in from the slot as time expired, forcing OT.

The Penguins’ power play was 1-for-6 as goalie Jimmy Howard was spectacular in making 39 saves, including 15 on the penalty kill.

“Just believe in what we do,” Wings defenseman Nikas Kronwall said. “We have been doing a decent job earlier in the game and over the course of the year we’ve done some good things on the PK. Howie came up huge for us a few times and we had some guys blocking shots. It was a great team win tonight.”

It’s unclear if Legwand will face further supplemental discipline from the league.

“He took the penalty,” said Wings coach Mike Babcock, referring to Legwand. “The referee made the call. When it happened, to be honest with you, I thought because they had been all over him, I thought that it was weak. But when I watched it on video, he just made the call.”

With the win, the Red Wings now have 77 points, which is three points behind Toronto for fourth-place Atlantic Division.

“I thought we did lots of good things,” Babcock said. “Obviously we did some things that weren't great either. We made some mistakes, they made mistakes, but we stayed with it and found a way to win a game. That was a big win for us. We knew going in that we were going to be under siege at times. I thought our guys battled real hard. We had a huge kill at the end. They got a real good power play. We had a huge kill there and our goaltending was good and we found a way to score enough goals.”

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 51 38 9 4 166 114 80
2 FLA 52 31 15 6 143 115 68
3 NYR 52 29 18 5 148 134 63
4 TBL 51 29 18 4 137 118 62
5 BOS 52 28 18 6 151 137 62
6 NYI 51 27 18 6 143 127 60
7 DET 52 26 18 8 130 131 60
8 PIT 51 26 18 7 132 130 59
9 NJD 53 26 20 7 119 120 59
10 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
11 MTL 54 26 24 4 143 143 56
12 PHI 51 23 19 9 121 133 55
13 OTT 53 24 23 6 148 165 54
14 BUF 53 21 26 6 120 139 48
15 TOR 51 19 23 9 117 140 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 51 18 19 25 37
H. Zetterberg 52 9 25 2 34
T. Tatar 51 15 17 -2 32
G. Nyquist 52 14 15 -2 29
J. Abdelkader 52 14 12 -4 26
P. Datsyuk 37 6 20 11 26
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 38 5 10 6 15
D. DeKeyser 48 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 19 10 4 .932 2.03
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89