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>>caption: ZED (M) GETS CONGRATS
ON THE WINNER IN VANCOUVER<<
@ VANCOUVER, BC:
The Red Wings got a game-winning
goal from Henrik Zetterberg with 0.3-
sec left in overtime for a 4-3 victory
at Vancouver late night Saturday.
Detroit concluded a 2-0-1 western
Canada road trip and nudged idle
Calgary out of an 8th place (last
playoff spot) in the NHL Western Conference.
One night after Brian Rafalski earned Detroit a standings point (in a
shootout loss) by scoring a tying goal with only 0.5-sec remaining in regulation,
Zetterberg clicked the clock down even tighter with his lamp-lighter in
Canucks DEF Christian Ehrhoff had to leave his broken stick behind the net
and Zetterberg took advantage, using his body to protect the puck as he
skated around Ehrhoff from out of the left corner. Zetterberg (#20) moved to
the inside edge of the left circle and backhandered a buzzer beater past Canadian
Olympic hero Roberto Luongo in the Vancouver goal.
The Red Wings overcame a 2-0/1st-Per deficit and a controversial 3rd-Per tying
goal by the Canucks.
The rubber was flying as Detroit outshot their hosts 54-32 including 20-10 in the
3rd-Per and 4-1 in the OT.
Vancouver scored twice in the opening frame on a pair of point shot deflections in
traffic that Wings goalie Jimmy Howard had no chance to see, let alone stop. Ehrhoff
fired from the right point and Kyle Wellwood (#11) redirected at 4:10/1. Wellwood then
started the play that saw Shane O'Brien (#2) send a left point snapshot off Detroit's
Darren Helm at 13:38/1.
Detroit tied the game with a pair of markers just 5-sec apart that set two club
records for fastest two Detroit goals ever and quickest two ever allowed by Vancouver.
Todd Bertuzzi snapped a personal scoring slump with his first goal (#16) in 20 games when
he interfered with Luongo, got away with it, and skated through the crease to shove the
disc underneath the stickless goalie at 12:34/2. Detroit controlled the ensuing faceoff,
Pavel Datsyuk (who took the draw) skated over the blueline and flicked a 40-foot wrister
between defenders. Datsyuk's shot (#23) deflected off the stick of Vancouver DEF Sami
Salo and past a stunned Luongo at 12:39/2.
The Red Wings took a 3-2 lead at 17:39/2 on a shorthanded goal by birthday boy Valtteri
Filppula (26 years old). When Vancouver DEF Alexander Edler couldn't hold the puck in
the Detroit zone at the right point, Filppula (#8) jumped into a solo rush and fired past Luongo
on a nifty backhander.
Vancouver tied the game with the only goal of the 3rd-Per at 4:40/3. Daniel Sedin (#20)
gloved the puck out of midair, dropped it to his feet and squeezed it past Howard's lower right
corner. The officials ignored Detroit's pleas for a replay review, which clearly showed Sedin had
closed his hand on the puck in an illegal grab.
Zetterberg made sure with his goal that also required no replay, even though the OT game clock
was allowed to run down to all zeroes.
Detroit broke the tie with Calgary for the NHL-West 8th spot and have 83 standings points to
81 for the Flames. Both clubs have 11 games remaining. Colorado is ahead of Detroit in 7th place
with 86-P, but the Avalanche have a game in hand on Detroit.
R-WINGS H-COACH MIKE BABCOCK: "I thought our team played real hard...A big win for our
team, we needed the points...Five out of six [points on the trip] is very good...We had quality,
quality chances...I thought Z and Pav were absolutely fantastic; Rafi. Nick and Fil had a real
good night for us. We know we got to get points and I thought our guys played hard. I told our
coaching staff I really thought we’d dig in here tonight...We outplayed them from the start to
R-WINGS CEN HENRIK ZETTERBERG: "It's nice that it goes our way...Their [defenseman] broke
his stick. Fil put it onto me, so I had a step on [Ehrhoff] and I didn’t know how much time was
left, but it was enough...We did a lot of things right...It was a good road trip."
R-WINGS DEF/CAPT NICKLAS LIDSTROM: "At the end we had almost all four guys in their zone
pinching in, going towards the net, looking for chances, rebounds. You saw the desperation
come out at the end in the last couple of games."
R-WINGS CEN VALTTERI FILPPULA: "It was a good win. Really, really important win...We played
really well, I think."
R-WINGS Rt-WING TODD BERTUZZI: "It’s a never-die attitude. Guys are playing well right now. We
responded with a big two points."
WINGS GOALIE JIMMY HOWARD: "The guys did a tremendous job in the second period [with three
goals]...We keep battlin'...No quit. We played until the final buzzer."
CANUCKS GOALIE ROBERTO LUONGO: "Dying seconds of overtime, it's a disappointing way to lose.
But we got a point."
Filppula had 2-A to go with his goal for a 3-P night.
The previous record of fastest two Detroit goals was 7-sec apart, accomplished twice: HoFamers
Syd Howe and Larry Aurie did it vs Toronto on 11/5/1936 and the feat was equaled 11/25/1987 by
Jeff Sharples and Brent Ashton vs Winnipeg.
The loss was a sour ending to a 3-1-1 Vancouver homestand which followed their month away
from home ice due to the Winter Olympic Games (including prep and restoration time in the arena).
The Wings were 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and are now 52 for their last 55 shorthanded situations.
Detroit dressed eight defensemen with forwards Patrick Eaves (head) and Dan Cleary (lower body
injury) unavailable. UTIL Derek Meech got just 5:36 of ice time playing left wing. However, while
he dressed, Brett Lebda never sniffed the ice.
Perhaps angry that Howard started an 18th consecutive game even though Detroit played
back-to-back road games, back-up netminder Chris Osgood did not sit on the empty goalie chair
on the visitors bench. Instead, Ozzie watched the game in the video room.
The Red Wings open a stretch of three home games in five nights by making the long trip back
east to host the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday night.
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