The Detroit Red Wings come away with a huge 2 points against the Montreal Canadiens, taking them down 2-1 in overtime.
Both teams started out the first period a little shakily. They seemed to be getting their footing back after the long break for the Olympics. The Red Wings did a great job smothering the Canadiens’ offensive players and limiting the shots on Jimmy Howard. Detroit would open the scoring at 14:01 on the power play, when Johan Franzen took the puck behind Montreal’s net, and goaltender Peter Budaj. He flipped a quick pass forward to a waiting Todd Bertuzzi in front of the net, who quickly batted the puck past Budaj’s arm to make it 1-0 Wings leaving the period. Shots after twenty minutes were 8-7 in favor of Detroit.
The second period was another great defensive effort by the Wings. Though no scoring occurred from either side, Detroit did a great job slowing down the play through the neutral zone and crashing the net to give Howard the defensive support he needed. They limited Montreal to just 2 shots on goal through the period, ending forty minutes of play with a huge 17-9 advantage in shots.
The Red Wings continued the strong play throughout the third period. The only thing they did wrong was not putting the puck in the back of the net. Montreal would take advantage of it late, on a 6-on-5 after they pulled Budaj. At 19:31, Brian Gionta took possession of an errant puck that slid through Howard’s goal crease. He backhanded it over Howard’s shoulder and off the inside of the post to tie the game 1-1 and send it into overtime. Shots through regulation ended at 26-17 for Detroit.
It would be Gustav Nyquist that ended up the overtime hero for Detroit. At 4:32, just 28 seconds left in the game, he took possession of a rebound off of a point-shot, and wristed it home behind Budaj to take the game 2-1 and the crucial 2 points in the standings. This game gives them a huge lift going into tomorrow. They need to rack up as many points early as they possibly can as they make the push towards the final stretch of the season, and hopefully into the playoffs. Next game is tomorrow night against the Ottawa Senators. See you the, Nation!