Kings 5, Red Wings 3
|Anze Kopitar finished the Kings' scoring Thursday night, notching his team-high 22nd goal.
— On Tuesday, the Red Wings only needed 20 minutes to win the game. They scored twice on the Minnesota Wild in the third period to send the game into overtime, where Brett Lebda converted a spellbounding Henrik Zetterberg
pass for the winner. And in Boston, the Red Wings bottled up the Bruins in the third period to pull out a victory.
But on Thursday, the joke was on the Red Wings.
This time their opponent delivered the late-round knockout — and then kept punching — as Los Angeles scored four unanswered goals in the third period en route to a 5-3 win.
Fans didn’t even to have time to enjoy the mullets and “name that tune” on 80s night at Joe Louis Arena. Once the third period began, the Kings scored once every three and a half minutes. Patrick O’Sullivan brought the Kings within a goal 39-seconds into the final frame. Alexander Frolov tied the score at 6:15, Brad Stuart
at 13:07, and Anze Kopitar threw one last doozy at 14:39.
To make it worse, the Kings were outscored, 13-3, in the three previous meetings with Detroit.
“We probably got what we deserved,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “We were up 3-1, and we hadn’t been very good all night. After a while, winning starts to catch up to you. And I thought that was evident in our last couple of wins. And then, I thought today the team that worked the hardest and competed the longest won the game.”
The loss snapped the Wings' eight-game winning streak before a stunned home crowd. A ninth victory would have tied a franchise record, already matched once this season in November.
“This team doesn’t usually let things like that slide, but tonight we obviously did,” Red Wings forward Dan Cleary
Both Frolov and Kopitar’s tallies broke a Red Wings’ penalty kill. Goalie Chris Osgood
allowed the four goals on just nine shots in the third period. He stopped 20 of 25 shots.
Previously, Detroit (41-11-4) had only lost twice when leading after two periods, and Los Angeles had won just twice.
“They were fortunate to be where they were,” Kings coach Marc Crawford said. “For a team that’s a last-place team to face that kind of adversity and keep with the game plan, I thought it was terrific.”
Through two periods, it looked like Zetterberg was going to steal the spotlight for the second consecutive game. Less than a minute into the second period, his shot from an impossible angle found space right under goaltender Jason Labarbera’s armpit to break a 1-1 tie.
His second goal was just as spectacular, putting the Wings up 3-1 in the second period.
Zetterberg galloped down the left wing, but found no play in front. Taking his time, he curled around the net, sniffing a wraparound opportunity. It didn’t fool Labarbra — who had his skate glued to the
left post — or so he thought. Zetterberg squeezed the puck through the few inches that remained.
The teams traded goals in the first period. Tomas Kopecky put the Wings up 49 seconds into the game when he tapped Mikael Samuelsson’s shot into an open net. Former Wings left wing Kyle Calder tied the game at 1-1 at 10:17.
|Three star selections