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>>caption: ZETTERBERG WAS GREAT
AT BOTH ENDS OF THE ICE AND WAS
SELECTED THE GAME'S #1 STAR<<
@ JOE LOUIS ARENA:
Henrik Zetterberg set up the
first Detroit goal and scored the
other two and the Red Wings beat
the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh
Penguins 3-1 Monday night.
The Wings opened a 3-game
homestand by doubling their lead
on the idle Calgary Flames from two
to four standings points (85-81) in the fight for the final NHL Western
Conference playoff spot. Both teams have 10 regular season games remaining.
As the contest ended, Pittsburgh Capt. Sidney Crosby twice cross-checked
and once punched Zetterberg in front of the Detroit net. Zetterberg swung
back and a gathering of the clan saw officials have to get between Crosby and
Wings goalie Jimmy Howard. All three players were assessed roughing minors
even though the game had ended.
It was a frustrating night for the Pens, who made their first visit to The Joe
since capturing the Cup there last spring. The Red Wings kept Crosby and the
Penguins offense from gaining momentum by both jamming the neutral zone and
keeping the puck in the Pens end.
Plus, Zetterberg covered Crosby closely all night.
Valtteri Filppula (#9) started the scoring at 19:03/1. Zetterberg started the play
as a 3-man rush saw Todd Bertuzzi deliver a cross-ice pass to Filppula. The Finn
curled and dragged the puck until he found space to shoot between the legs of
Pittsburgh DEF Sergei Gonchar and beat Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury just
inside the left post.
Detroit made it 2-0 at 7:38/2. Again Bertuzzi drew the primary assist. In a move
similar to his game-winning goal at Vancouver Saturday night with 0.3-sec left in
overtime, Zetterberg came out of the left corner to backhand the puck toward the
net. Unlike Canucks keeper Roberto Luongo, Fleury made the save, but Zetterberg
(#21) jumped on his own rebound for another quick backhand flick.
Pittsburgh's only goal made it 2-1 at 16:54/2. Pascal Dupuis (#18) was given credit
for chipping a bouncing puck just under Howard's left side for an unassisted marker.
Detroit restored its two goal bulge when Zetterberg (#22) let loose a snapshot just
inside the blueline and between two defenders. The puck went between Fleury's body
and right arm at 1:20/3.
The bottle-up tactics of Detroit allowed Pittsburgh only 8-SOG in the 3rd-Per, their
lowest total of any period in the game. The Penguins' best chances came when Alexei
Ponikarovsky clanged a shot off the far-side left post with 2-mins remaining and when
Crosby fired wide right from in close during the closing seconds when Pittsburgh
pulled Fleury for an extra attacker.
Fleury made 30-SV and Howard 26.
R-WINGS H-COACH MIKE BABCOCK: "This is the best run we've been on all year.
We're desperate to try to get into the playoffs. We have proud players who have
done a lot of winning over a long period of time...We'd all like to get into the
tournament and we think we have a shot if we get in."
R-WINGS CEN HENRIK ZETTERBERG: "We’re doing a great job as a five-man unit.
We have to minimize [Crosby's] ice, be on him all the time. He’s a good player when
he has the puck. The more you play against him, the more you get used to playing
against him...Always when you play against a good player, it’s fun, because it’s not
just defense, you play a lot of offense, too...It’s a good battle, and I think we both
enjoy it.We were battling and then after the whistle, Howie came and rescued me."
R-WINGS Rt-WING TODD BERTUZZI: "[Zetterberg is] playing aggressive, he’s getting
in there and taking over the play right now. He’s carrying the puck, he’s got his
room, he’s skating well. When you got him and Pavel [Datsyuk], a one-two punch going
that fast and that good, it’s unbeatable."
R-WINGS GOALIE JIMMY HOWARD: "[Crosby] does that stuff all the time. Somehow he
gets away with it.’
PENS CEN/CAPT SIDNEY CROSBY: "There are lots of guys who play tough. There are a
lot of guys who don’t have Rafalski and Lidstrom on the back end, either. [Zetterberg]
competes hard. We both do...We have pride in our games. When there’s any of those
rivalry games, it’s pretty natural for guys to be competitive and even raise their game."
PENS GOALIE MARC-ANDRE FLEURY: "They played hard from start to finish. That’s the
Detroit we’re used to seeing from last year. It seems they wanted it more than we did
PENS H-COACH DAN BYLSMA: "I think our level, as far as desperation, needs to go up."
Zetterberg has 6-G & 9-A for 15-P in his last 10 games.
Detroit went 1-0-1 vs Pittsburgh this season, including a 2-1 shootout loss in the Steel City
on JAN 31ST.
The Red Wings are now 24-2-4 this season when entering the 3rd-Per with a lead.
The Wings are 8-2-1 in their 11 post-Olympic outings.
Detroit FWDs Dan Cleary (groin) and Patrick Eaves (back & neck) were both scratched for a
second straight game.
Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin sat out for a third time in four games with a right foot injury.
St. Clair, MICH native Mike Emrick, doing play-by-play on VS, was honored during second
intermission at The Joe Monday. In his 37th year of broadcasting, Emrick was doing his 3000th
pro hockey game.
The Red Wings host division rival St. Louis Wednesday night.
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