Defensive struggles, missed opportunities haunt Red Wings, lose to Lightning 6-2

25 SOG 34
1/1 POWER PLAY 1/4
26 HITS 14

1st Period

The Detroit Red Wings would get an early chance to strike first. Shortly after the initial puck drop, Ben Bishop carelessly gave away the puck. Anthony Mantha jumped on the loose puck and put in on net, but it hit the goal post. The Tampa Bay Lightning would have a few scoring opportunities before getting on the board. Brian Boyle found Ondrej Palat on a great stretch pass. Palat easily entered the offensive zone and fed Erik Condra who put the first goal past Jimmy Howard. Offsetting roughing calls were made that saw Kyle Quincey and Cedric Paquette go to the box respectively. No damage was done by either side during 4-on-4 play. The Wings found iron yet again as Tomas Tatar said hello to the crossbar. The Lightning went up by two goals as J.T. Brown put a puck on net, Howard made the first initial stop, but a rebound dribbled out and Vladislav Namestnikov made sure it got over the line. Luke Glendening headed to the box for roughing. The Wings’ penalty kill came up big to keep the deficit at two.

2nd Period

Tampa Bay got on the board for the third time early in the second. Steven Stamkos looked to center a pass from just behind the Wings’ net and the pass ended up going off Jonathan Ericsson‘s skate and got past Howard. Jeff Blashill made the move to pull Howard and bring in Petr Mrazek. Some fisticuffs would ensue as Brendan Smith and J.T. Brown would drop the gloves. Alex Killorn headed to the box for roughing. Henrik Zetterberg took a Nicklas Kronwall pass on the man advantage that deflected off Victor Hedman‘s skate and just so happen to find Justin Abdelkader‘s stick, and he put it past Bishop. The Wings had a great chance to pull within a goal as Brad Richards entered the offensive zone and pulled out a great move and put a shot on Bishop. He gave up a huge rebound that was almost put in the net by Gustav Nyquist, but Stamkos was there to prevent it with a great back-check. Tyler Johnson split the Red Wings’ defense and put a shot on goal, but Mrazek was there to keep the score 3-1. Pavel Datsyuk left the puck for Darren Helm at center ice and Helm used his speed to make a great move and put a puck past Bishop’s five-hole to pull the Wings within one goal. Mike Green went off for tripping and shortly afterwards, Abdelkader would head off for cross-checking. Nikita Kucherov put the Lightning up by two as he took a great Tyler Johnson pass and put it past Mrazek. Kronwall headed off for slashing. Tampa Bay would have 47 seconds of carryover power play time heading into the third.

3rd Period

No damage done on the carryover PK time. Shortly after though, Tyler Johnson put a shot on goal and Mrazek gave up a big rebound, and Ondrej Palat was there to put the puck in the net to put the Lightning up by three. Erik Condra got a good pass from Kucherov and looked to put Tampa Bay up by four with a bunch of the net uncontested, but he ended up hitting the side of the net. Anthony Mantha had another bid for his first career NHL goal with a backhander, but Bishop didn’t allow that to happen. Erik Condra produced Tampa’s sixth goal of the game off his own rebound.

What’s next?

The Wings will be back at the Joe on Thursday to start a 3-game home stand against Max Pacioretty and the Montreal Canadiens.

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