The Detroit Red Wings drop Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals with the Boston Bruins 3-2 in overtime, dropping to 1-3 in the series.
Detroit would come out into this game getting exactly the start they wanted all series. Lifted by the return of captain Henrik Zetterberg, they did a good job putting pressure on the Bruins in all three zones. They’d get on the board first halfway through the period, finally connecting on a power play. Cleanly off a won faceoff by Pavel Datsyuk, Niklas Kronwall took the puck at the point and let off a shot from the top of the slot through traffic. It would find its way past Tuukka Rask for the 1-0 lead at 11:00. Detroit dominated in shots in the first twenty minutes, leading Boston 14-5.
The second period was very similar to the first for the Wings, although they got back on their heels late. Detroit would pot another goal early in the period, when Kronwall gloved a puck down behind the Bruins’ net and made a quick pass to Datsyuk in front of the net. He quickly wristed it in before Rask could get back into position for the 2-0 lead at 4:27. Boston wouldn’t go down without a fight, and got themselves on the board on a six second power play halfway through the period. They’d win a faceoff in the Red Wings’ zone, and the puck came back to Torey Krug, who let off a very similar shot to Kronwall’s in the first period, at the top of the slot. It deflected off of a Red Wings’ stick in flight and past Jonas Gustavsson for the 2-1 score leaving the second period. Shots were 22-17 in favor of Detroit, though they were outshot 12-8 in the period.
Boston would even the game coming right out into the third period. Milan Lucic made his way through the Detroit zone through the slot completely unguarded and unchallenged, right to the front of the net. He’d take a quick pass from behind the net and pot it past Gustavsson to tie the game 2-2 at 1:15. The rest of the period would showcase some great chances for both sides, but ultimately the game would need overtime to find a winner. Shots through regulation were 34-28 for Detroit.
After a hard-fought battle through the overtime period, the deciding goal would come from Boston on a series of bad deflections. Dougie Hamilton let a shot off at the top of the faceoff circle that immediately deflected off of Luke Glendening’s stick as he attempted a block. It would careen to the front of the net and deflect perfectly off of Danny DeKeyser’s skate and Jerome Iginla, past Gustavsson to end the game 3-2 for Boston, extending their series lead to 3-1.
Everything is do-or-die from here on out. They played a solid game, much much more than the previous two, but apparently not solid enough. Come out quick early on, and stand your ground late with no/minimal mistakes. That’s what it’s going to take for them to have a chance at taking this series. Game 5 will be Saturday afternoon at 3:00 in Boston. See you then, Nation.