Detroit at Nashville (3/19/11)

The Red Wings were on the road tonight playing the Predators in Nashville. The goalies were Jimmy Howard and Pekka Rinne. The Red Wings were short staffed tonight since Hudler still had the flu, and Datsyuk and Franzen were both out with day-to-day lower body injuries so they went with one forward short. Salei was still out for family leave but Kindl was filling in for him.

This was a violent game.  The Predators were doing a lot of hard hitting and they seemed to be trying to hurt people. There were at least two elbows to the head in the first period alone and neither one was penalized. Lidstrom was hit well after the play at one point and it took him a while to recover. Helm was driven over the boards into the Predator’s bench area. It was really pretty crazy and almost nothing was being called. What they did call, though, was incidental contact on Holmstrom which negated a goal. He was standing at the top of the crease and Rinne bumped into him. I guess Holmstrom is breaking the rules just by existing anywhere on the ice that the goalie might want to be. The Wings scored first anyway, though, when they had a power play near the end of the period. Bertuzzi passed it down low to Zetterberg who centered it to Cleary in front of the net. Cleary chipped it up and over Rinne to make it one to nothing Detroit.

Early in the second period the Red Wings were shorthanded and Eaves went down and blocked a bullet of shot by Shea Weber. He took it in the leg and was unable to stand up. The puck was cleared deep but the Predators were starting back up ice so the referees didn’t blow the whistle. Eaves was crawling to the bench so that somebody could come out to replace him. Kronwall saw what was happening and decided to help him along. He used his stick to shovel eaves over to the boards in front of the bench where the linesman helped him the rest of the way. It was a pretty funny looking scene, although Eaves was clearly in a lot of pain. I can’t say I’ve ever seen that happen before. It was a real display of guts by Eaves to struggle to the bench and some quick thinking by Kronwall to scoot him along. Luckily, Eaves wasn’t seriously hurt and was right back on the ice a few minutes later. It must have just been a stinger that paralyzed his leg for a little while.

Later on in the second period the Predators tied the game with a tip-in goal by Geoffrion.

In the third period Nashville took the lead with a power play goal. Ericsson blocked a shot and it bounced right to Blum who was in perfect position to tap it in.

The Red Wings tried to tie the game but the Predators played great defense. Howard went to the bench for an extra skater toward the end but Legwand put one into the empty net and that was it for the Wings.

This was a good game and was well played by both teams. The goalie interference calls are starting to get annoying though. Also, the non-calls in this game, while sort of refreshing, were pretty unusual considering what’s called on most nights.

The Red Wings have two tough home games coming up next. Pittsburgh comes to town on Monday and Vancouver will be there on Wednesday.

This 1-3 loss brings us to:
43-21-8
94 points

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