Johnson cruises Lightning to a 5-2 Game 2 victory over Red Wings

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RED WINGS at LIGHTNING
32 SOG 31
1/5 POWER PLAY 1/6
35 FACE-OFF WINS 34
14 BLOCKED SHOTS 15
30 HITS 30
9 GIVEAWAYS 8

1st Period

Two minutes into the first, Alex Killorn headed to the box for holding. The Red Wings didn’t do much on their first man advantage of the game. Tampa Bay had their first quality scoring chance a few minutes after when Jimmy Howard gave up a juicy rebound, but was able to slide across and make a great pad save on the ensuing shot. The Lightning had another opportunity shortly after and thanks to Danny DeKeyser‘s rear-end, the puck stayed out of the net. Dylan Larkin put a good check on Jonathan Drouin that Drouin didn’t seem to appreciate. The two had words for the rest of the shift and even when they got to their respective benches. Kyle Quincey headed to the box for roughing. Tampa Bay kept the puck in the Red Wings’ zone for practically the entire man advantage, but Howard stood tall between the pipes. The Lightning headed right back to the power play as Gustav Nyquist went to the box for slashing. It quickly turned into a 5-on-3 advantage for the Bolts as Justin Abdelkader went to the box for tripping. Nikita Kucherov let another rocket of a shot go similar to his Game 1 goal and put the Lightning on the board first. Tampa Bay stayed on the power play since they scored within the 5-on-3 play, but Detroit killed off the extended power play time.

2nd Period

Larkin headed to the box for hooking early in the second period. Abdelkader delivered a good check shorthanded, and Detroit killed off the Lightning power play. Fresh out of the box, Larkin used his speed to get up ice as Jonathan Ericsson flipped the puck into the offensive zone. The puck banked off the boards and Larkin was there as he got behind the Tampa defense and put the puck through Ben Bishop‘s five hole. Thanks to a non-call that should have been interference to Tampa Bay, the Bolts countered and found their way down ice, into the Wings’ zone and went up by a goal again courtesy of Dan Boyle. That’s how things like that seemed to go for most of the night, unfortunately. Pavel Datsyuk headed to the box for roughing after he lost a tooth from a Victor Hedman high-stick that wasn’t called. I can’t figure it out either. With 30 seconds to go in the Lightning man advantage, Riley Sheahan and Drouin headed to the box both for roughing, but Hedman also headed to the box for unsportsmanlike conduct. The Wings had about a 1:25 of power play time after Tomas Tatar exited the box after serving the Datsyuk penalty. Hedman went right back to the box, this time for hooking. The Wings’ power play seemed extinct yet again. Boyle headed to the box for interference, but the Red Wings still couldn’t find any luck on the power play.

3rd Period

Nikita Nesterov went to the box early in the third period for high-sticking. Brad Richards finally got something positive for the Wings on the man advantage with a great wrist shot through traffic, aided by a Sheahan screen on Bishop to tie the game up at two goals apiece. Tampa Bay jumped right back ahead by a goal not long after though, courtesy of Tyler Johnson, and the Red Wings had to play catch-up hockey again. Tatar headed to the box for holding the stick, and Detroit’s penalty kill came up big to keep the game within a goal. After a poor change, the Lightning went up by two goals anyway, as Johnson netted his second goal of the game. Jeff Blashill pulled Howard with 3:40 to go in regulation. Killorn recorded an empty-netter with about two and a half left and pulled ahead by three goals. Some madness ensued in front of Bishop, as plenty of equipment was left laying on the ice after all the dust settled.

What’s next?

The series will pick back up Sunday night in Joe Louis Arena for the series home opener. Let’s hope the Wings can find some kind of solution and get back into the series in a positive form.