Wings Set Franchise Record At 15 Home Game Wins Against The Sabres
The Detroit Red Wings win their 15th consecutive home game against the Buffalo Sabres. The Wings broke the past franchise records for consecutive home game wins and helped Howard receive his 10th career shutout!
First Period: The first period appeared to be a very successful period for the Wings. With only one penalty and three goals leading them to the second period, anyone would be assured. However, the Wings and Sabres fought back and forth for the puck which is proven in the shots on goal stats for the period. The puck control was not as solid as it could be for Detroit. A great first goal from Zetterberg took the Wings to a 1 to 0 lead. Towards the end of the period, Franzén had a beautiful breakaway after a skillful pass from Datsyuk that landed the Wings their second goal. A little over a minute later and with only 17 seconds left, Lidstrӧm scored the last goal in the first period, leaving the period with a solid 3 to 0 lead over the Sabres. SOG: 11 Detroit vs 11 Buffalo.
Second Period: The Wings had a quick start with two goals within the first five minutes of the second period. After four minutes, Bertuzzi scores a phenomenal backhanded goal. It was the assist on Bert's goal that gave Datsyuk his 700th career point. Only seconds later, Helm scores from a pass from Drew Miller. Needless to say, Ryan Miller left the net after that and Jhonas Enroth took over for Miller. I cannot blame Buffalo's Lindy Ruff for taking Ryan Miller out after 5 goals in 25 minutes. After that, both teams could not score and the Wings ended the second with a 5 to 0 lead. SOG: 19 Detroit vs 18 Buffalo.
Third Period: After Buffalo switched Miller out and put Enroth in, the Wings could not get the puck past the Buffalo goalie. Each team had three power play chances in the third and both had chances to score, but each goalie was always there to provide a save. The Sabres outshot the Wings in the third period, but the Wings still had a 5 to 0 shutout win over the Sabres! SOG: 7 Detroit vs 9 Buffalo, SOG overall: 26 Detroit vs 27 Buffalo.
Stars of the night: 1. #13 Pavel Datsyuk, 2. #44 Todd Bertuzzi, 3. #35 Jimmy Howard
I really did not think the score reflected the Wings playing. Just as Babcock said in the postgame interview, the Wings weren't as good as they have been tonight but they scored goals. It seemed the Wings did not have the puck control they usually possess in a game. Awesome 15th consecutive home game win, also a congratulations to Pavel Datsyuk for getting his 700th career point in tonights game. Bert was also very impressive this game, he really has stepped it up in the last 10 games. It was really cute postgame interview with Bert, he paid a compliment to Pavel saying he is that "special kind of player that makes everyone around him better".
I think Howard saved a lot of this game. Last two games have been big ones for Howard, first 100 career wins, now earning his 10th career shutout. Go Jim Howard!