Winning Streak Finally Comes to a Halt Against Montréal

Detroit’s winning streak ends at 7 tonight when the Wings fall short in a 7 to 2 loss against the Montréal Canadiens. Was it because the Wings were lacking their trusty captain Nicklas Lidstrӧm? You decide.

First Period: It took about five minutes for a point to get on the scoreboard and that point was not a Red Wings point as hoped for. Montréal had the first point with a goal by Bourque. Five minutes later, Emelin scores his first goal and gives Montréal a 2 to 0 lead over the Wings. Within the last ten minutes of the first period, Montréal’s Desharnais and Plekanec both scored. Detroit had a couple power play chances, but could not capitalize. Montréal left the first period with a 4 to 0 lead over the Wings. SOG: 12 Montréal vs 6 Detroit.

Second Period: The second period started with a new Wing in net for Detroit, Conklin. Conklin replaced Howard, but that did not seem to help Detroit enough. Within the first two minutes, Pacioretty gave Montréal their fifth goal. Less than three minutes later, Deharnais scored his second goal of the night on the power play for the Ericsson tripping penalty. The Canadiens were up 6 to 0.  Detroit had another power play 6 minutes into the second that they could not capitalize on. The second period ended with a 6 to 0 lead for Montréal. SOG: 18 Detroit vs 17 Montréal.

Third Period: It took 40 minutes and 21 seconds, but the Wings finally got on the scoreboard. Hudler scored after 21 seconds of play in the third, making it 6 to 1. Only six minutes later, Hudler scored his second goal of the night. Due to some more sloppy playing by Detroit, Cole scored for Montreal with a little over a minute left of the third. The game ended at 7 to 2, Montréal winning. SOG: 27 Detroit vs 25 Montréal.

The first period was just sloppy for the Wings and they were not focused at all. Detroit missed passes, had too many turnovers, gave Montréal too many easy chances, and many more mistakes. Even the rock solid Jimmy Howard had a rough first 20 minutes, which is why Conklin replaced him in the second.

The Wings did not get much better in the second period. While they had more shots on goal, they were still too sloppy and had no defensive help. It was apparent Babcock was irritated with his team and rightfully so. Even though Hudler scored two towards the beginning of the third, the third period still was not good for the Wings. I am sure the Wings left Montreal with their heads hanging low, wishing their captain was there to battle the Canadiens with them.

What do you think caused the Wings to lose 7 to 2? Was it the players, Howard's beginning performace, or the dedicated Wings captain being out sick?

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George Prax's picture

This game was anomalous for both teams, but if I were a Wings fan I would be a little worried if the one game they play without Lidstrom they get blown out like this.

Rachel Bellono's picture

I think the Canadiens decided to step it up because they were playing the best team in the league and the Wings thought they could take it easy because they were playing a not as successful team in the league. Kind of collided and ended up hurting Detroit. Not the mentality they should have against any team.

Kyle Andrew Busch's picture

Lidstrom wouldn't have stopped that onslaught. Maybe in a leadership/vocal way, but one guy doesn't make a huge difference. I realize it's Nick, but they're all in the NHL and have handled adversity. I've heard some people laughing that that's what the Wings will be like without him...not even close. It's one bad game. At least we know everyone thinks Lidstrom is a god though lol

George Prax's picture

He's still your number 1 defenseman. It's not a matter of him necessarily being able to stop every goal, but more a matter of strategy and the effect that losing a top defenseman has on a team. Lidstrom's gone, everyone has to move one step up. So your #2 d-man is now your #1, etc etc. The Habs have gone through the exact same thing without Markov. Subban has to be #1, Gorges has to be #2, and rookies who would otherwise only make the team over a longer period of time get thrust into roles they might not be ready for. I think the contributions of a #1 d-man are much bigger than that. And obviously the Wings don't often play without Lidstrom.

But there's no doubt it's more than just Lidstrom not playing, I agree with you there. And that it's only one game.

Rachel Bellono's picture

I totally agree with you, Kyle. He is just one man and we can play without him. However, he is definitely the number 1 defensemen. He is so aware on the ice, which is something they were missing that night. When Lidstrom leaves though, we can always find another D to bring up to help out. I don't personally think anyone on the team is ready to move from #2 to #1. Do you?

Kyle Andrew Busch's picture

But keep in mind that when Lidstrom does retire, they're bringing in someone to help fill the void. Clearly you can't replace Lidstrom with anyone remotely close to what he is, but if they bring in, say a Ryan Suter, it sure helps.

Rachel Bellono's picture

That's exactly what I said, "When Lidstrom leaves though, we can always find another D to bring up to help out". I know they will find someone good, they will have to because your right, they cannot replace Lidstrom. I am just talking on the Wings roster they have now in relation to moving #2 to #1, there really isn't anyone to do so.