The Detroit Red Wings take the second of back-to-back nights, as they topple the Ottawa Senators 6-1, splitting the season series 2-2.
It was a massively successful first period for the Red Wings tonight. They opened the scoring roughly halfway through the period, at 10:59, when the Senators gave the puck away to Riley Sheahan right in front of their own net, and he put it in past Robin Lehner for the first goal of the night. They’d strike again in short order, at 11:28, when Gustav Nyquist made a pass across the slot to a waiting Johan Franzen, who one-timed it into the open side of the net to take the 2-0 lead. They’d get another quickly, this time on the power play. At 13:27, Franzen took a pass through the slot from Daniel Alfredsson and one-timed it into the net for the dominating 3-0 lead and his second of the night. They weren’t quite finished yet though, as at 18:00, Niklas Kronwall took a shot at the top of slot which was blocked. The resulting rebound skittered to Tomas Jurco, who quickly wristed it in to make it 4-0 Red Wings leaving the first period. Shot were strangely in favor of Ottawa, 16-12.
The second period went just as well for Detroit. At 3:49, Franzen completed the hat trick, when he took the puck in slowly on Lehner, patiently waiting him out and then putting it over his shoulder for the 5-0 lead. Ottawa wouldn’t go quietly, though, and at 4:19 they finally got on the board, when Bobby Ryan took a shot from the point that found its way past Jonas Gustavsson, possibly deflected along the way, making it 5-1 Wings. Detroit struck again shortly after that though, at 5:04, when Jurco left a blind pass back behind Ottawa’s net to a waiting Tomas Tatar, who one-timed it past Lehner, who was looking in the complete opposite direction, for the 6-1 lead. Ottawa then finally pulled Lehner and put in Andrew Hammond in relief. Shots through two periods ended at 27-23 in favor of Ottawa.
The third period was largely uneventful, barring a few spats between Franzen and Chris Neil, who eventually earned himself a double-minor and a game misconduct and got ejected. The 6-1 score would stand as the final, and final shot totals amounted to 38-26 in favor of the Senators.
This is the type of start Detroit wanted coming out of the Olympic break. Two huge road wins over divisional opponents to start off the final stretch of the season. They need to continue this type of play until the very last game. Next game will be Tuesday night against the New Jersey Devils. See you then, Nation!