Following a big preseason win Sunday, 6-3, the Wings traveled to United Center for the re-match game against the Blackhawks. Howard battled Crawford in the pipes. The lines were changed, most noticeably moving Athanasiou off the first and replacing him with Pulkkinen. Abdelkader made his first preseason start.
First period, Wings started with a little pressure, including good chance for Tyler Bertuzzi. But five minutes into the game, Ryan Hartman gets the backhand shot to put the Hawks 1-0, assisted by Keith and Motte. Sproul was badly outnumbered and the puck slid past Howard.
Ericsson took a interference penalty (surprising, I know), but a good kill followed for the penalty kill unit. They didn’t allow the Hawks to set up.
Larkin got tripped, sending Detroit to their first power play. However, they couldn’t set up and get anything done, and seemed to be scrambling more then shooting. Defense was bad and unorganized most of the first period.
Chicago would make it 2-0 with a tip-in from Vincent Hinostroza, assisted from Desjardins. Ending the period, Dekeyser took a cross checking call, allowing the Hawks to another power play. A lot of pressure and and close calls, but no addition in the score.
But hey, it could get better in the second period, right? Wrong. A most definitely wrong answer sponsored by Ericsson. Two minutes in, he’s back in the penalty box for a tripping call.
Power play goal for Chicago. Panik gets a snap shot past Howard from Fortin and Campbell, extending the lead to a 3-0 hole. Scott Darling replaces Crawford shortly after.
Wings finally scored, thanks to Aubry! He gets the puck from Callahan and Tangrodi and makes a smooth wrist shot to get Detroit’s first goal of the game. Offense seemed to have sparked, a few close chances would follow.
When it finally looked good for us, the Hawks get another one. Schmaltz tip with the assists belonging to Panarin and Keith. End of 2: shots are a small 15 for Detroit, and 22 for Chicago.
Third period started uneventfully for the most part. 6 minutes in though, Fortin shoots one in the net and gets Chicago up to 5-1 lead. Wings would follow shortly after with an uneventful powerplay, then go to 4 on 4.
With over a minute left, the sixth goal for Chicago came by Anisimov on the power play.
Defense was disappointing again, they weren’t in sync and were outnumbered too many times. Howard was shaky and slower then usual, which could be a future concern.
The lack of offense was obviously a let down, with only 18 shots on goal, but both Chicago goalies were outstanding, as were their defense.
Wings head to Pittsburgh to play the Penguins tomorrow with a 3-1-1 preseason record.
But there is a bright side, deep deep down: Kane didn’t get a single point.