Red Wings 2, Avalanche 0
|Zetterberg scored his 30th goal of the season on this wrap-around play with 2:20 left. He's nine goals shy of tying his career-high set in 2005-06.
– In what might be the most lopsided 2-0 game of the season, the Red Wings took advantage of Henrik Zetterberg
's 30th goal of the season to beat Colorado for the third time this season, while Dominik Hasek earned his 80th career shutout, fourth of the season -- and second against the Avalanche.
"I never think about the past, I never check my record with the team I play against," said Hasek who had his second consecutive shutout against Colorado. "I only think about who I am facing, their best players, their best goal-scorers and be ready for them because every game is different."
The Red Wings out shot the Avs, 36-15, and controlled almost every aspect of the game, but it wasn't until late in the game that they were able to take full control, and watch Kris Draper
put the game away with an empty-netter, stretching Detroit's winning streak to six straight.
The scoring chances came early when Wings right wing Mikael Samuelsson shot on an open net after Avs goalie Peter Budaj came out and made a save. But Samuelsson's shot hit the far goalpost, keeping the Avs kept themselves out of an early hole.
The early chances for Detroit continued when Budaj's delay of game penalty gave the Red wings a five-on-three power play early in the first period. But the Red Wings weren't able to capitalize.
Wings forwards Jiri Hudler and Tomas Kopecky were unable to score on a two-on-one breakaway nine minutes into the game, as Kopecky misfired.
With only seconds left in the second, Avs right wing Milan Hejduk tapped a pass from Andrew Brunette past Hasek, the goal was waved off by referee Greg Kimmerly when it was decided that Scott Hannan interfered with Hasek.
Colorado managed only one shot in that period, its lowest total for one period all season, and managed only four shots through 40-minutes. The Avs' focus was clearly on defense and keeping the league-leading Red Wings off the scoreboard as long as they could. Colorado's previous low for shots was 12 against Anaheim on Dec. 19. Colorado managed only one scoring chance to Detroit's 11 through two periods.
|Avs left wing Wojtek Wolski screens Hasek, who still makes the save on Colorado's lone shot of the second period.
"That's exactly what the first round of the playoffs are going to be," Wings coach Mike Babcock said. "You've got a top-seed against a team that believes if they check, check, check, that they have an opportunity and that's what they did tonight. They're battling for their playoff life, and those are great opponents for us."
Budaj was the lifeline for Colorado, particilarly late in the third when the Wings had a three-on-one breakaway, he was equal to Hudler's shot.
But his great play wasn't enough to keep Zetterberg off the score sheet as he scored on a wrap-around to beat Budaj glove side and give the Red Wings a 1-0 lead with only 2:20 left.
"Pav made a strong play in the corner," Zetterberg said. "He put it behind the net to me. I thought Homer was in front of the net so I just went to turn around and put it on net and it hit the goalie's stick and went in."
Draper then added the empty net goal with 13 seconds left to seal the Wings' 39th win of the season.
The Red Wings (39-10-4) head to Boston for an Original Six match-up with the Bruins Saturday at 7 p.m.
Brett Lebda returned after missing Wednesday's game against Pheonix with a wrist injury. ... Colorado goaltender Jose Theodore did not play after suffering back spasms Jan. 30 vs. Chicago.
|Three star selections