Detroit at Washington (1/31/09)

Detroit went to Washington D.C. for this afternoon’s game against the Capitals.  Conklin was our goalie and Jose Theodore was in for the Caps.  The Red Wings were without Zetterberg and Holmstrom who are both nursing injuries.  Chelios was a late healthy scratch.  Leino and Abdelkader were in to fill the gaps.

The Red Wings looked pretty good in the first period.  There was a lot of energy on both sides.  There were a lot of good scoring chances but no goals until late in the period.  Towards the end of the period Ville Leino got his first NHL goal to open the scoring for the Wings.  And it was a beauty.  He skated in on the net and turn around backwards.  He waited a bit and backhanded the puck backwards into the net.  He sure didn’t waste any time making the most of his opportunity.

Shortly after Detroit scored Washington answered back with a goal of their own.  It was a long shot from the point that came through a lot of traffic and was deflected in front of Conklin.  There’s nothing he could have done about it.  That made it one to one at the end of the first period.

Again in the second period there wasn’t any scoring until the late stages.  This time it was the Capitals that got the jump.  A Caps player was tripped up by Filppula but he still got the pass away to Mike Green in the high slot area.  There was a delayed penalty on the play but Green wristed it by Conklin before they even got an extra skater out.

Then in the final minute of the period Detroit answered with their second goal.  It was a power play goal that started with a slap shot by Hudler from the point.  Theodore made the initial save but Franzen was right there to knock in the rebound.  That tied the game at two heading into the second intermission.

More than half off the third period passed without any goals.  With about seven minutes left Ovechkin scored.  He made a great move and a tricky shot that fooled Conklin and broke the tie.

A few seconds later Maltby was called for cross checking.  It took just six seconds of power play time for Ovechkin to score again.  Backstrom shot the puck and the rebound came back to him.  He tapped it to Ovechkin who was all alone near the net.  It was an easy goal that looked almost unchallenged by the Wings.  Ovechkin hadn’t had a shot since the first period and then in the third he scored on his next two shots.  He’s an explosive player but the Wings had some serious lapses of defense, too.  So, with five minutes to go the Wings were down by two.

With about a minute and a half left Washington was penalized for hooking and Detroit pulled their goalie so it was six on four.  Then Washington got another penalty call, this time for putting the puck over the glass.  Detroit put Conklin back in and went with five on three.  A few seconds later the Caps got another penalty for throwing the puck over the glass again.  That kept it five on three but it took Poti, who is one of the Caps best penalty killers, off the ice.  That all made it a little more exciting but the Wings still needed two goal in 53 seconds just to tie.  There was one shot that looked like it was in but it hit the post and came right back out.  Unfortunately they weren’t able to score.

This was Detroit’s fifth loss in a row.  I thought they played pretty well in this one overall but a few breakdowns can really cost you when the other team has somebody like Ovechkin.

This 2-4 loss brings us to:
69 points

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