Your Detroit Red Wings continued their home ice advantage when they faced the Florida Panthers at Joe Louis Arena. Although the team couldn’t pull out a win, they did get a point for their fifth straight game, an overtime “pity point” as Sportsnet blogger, Steve Dangle would put it. Not only is the team disappointed in the loss, but they are also now 0-2-1 for the season against the Panthers and they only have one game left to improve the record.
Detroit’s lineup looked very much like the lineup that played against Dallas on Tuesday but unfortunately, the outcome did not look the same way. Petr Mrazek got his 15th start and was backed up by Grand Rapids’ Jared Coreau who was called up for the injured Jimmy Howard and just like Tuesday, Drew Miller was benched for Steve Ott.
It did not take long for the Wings to get on the board. Just a minute and 23 seconds into the game, Henrik Zetterberg scored an unassisted goal when he took a backhanded shot from the circle that found its way into the back of the net. Not too long after Zetterberg’s goal, Vincent Trocheck found the back of the net on a power play granted by a holding call to Jonathan Ericsson but the goal was challenged and waived off for offsides. Both teams got a second power play advantage of the period but neither could capitalize on it making both teams 0/2 on their chances. Justin Abdelkader left the game with an undisclosed injury after a hit he made on Trocheck and did not return for the remainder of the game. At 18:15 Jason Demers scored his third goal of the season with an assist from Smith and Yandle, tying the game at one. The shots on goal after one were 11-7 in favor of the team from the sunshine state.
The second period was rather quiet for both teams. Florida gained two more power play chances making them 0/4 for the night. The Wings also gained another chance and had a few good shots but they too failed to improve their record and went 0/3 for the power play after two. Fun fact: Detroit is now 13/81 of their power play chances for this season putting them at a whopping 16%. In the second period alone, the Panthers doubled Detroit’s 6 shots on goal and the score remained tied at one.
To start the third period, Detroit had a few great shots on net but nothing that could make it’s way past Roberto Luongo. Tomas Jurco sent Florida on their fifth power play of the night after tripping Keith Yandle but it didn’t take long for the two minutes to expire, 0/5 on the power play for the Panthers. With four minutes left in regulation, MacKenzie drew a penalty after nearly steam rolling over Petr Mrazek in net but not surprisingly, the Wings power play unit wasted yet another opportunity to take the lead. Regulation nearly ended on a Florida power play after Ryan Sproul was called for tripping Yandle and Florida ended the night with no dice on 6 power play chances, Detroit was 0/4 on their man advantages. The game headed into OT tied at one with shots for the period 6-6.
It seemed as though the puck luck was very much in favor of the Wings from the start of overtime. Although the team couldn’t score and didn’t put any shots on net, puck possession seemed to be very much in favor of the men in red and white. Henrik Zetterberg had a chance to score his second of the game when Anthony Mantha found him with a bouncing puck but Luongo was there with the glove save. Less than a minute later, at 2:04 into OT, Aleksander Barkov ended the game on a breakaway. This goal was his first goal since October 15th which ironically was also against the Wings. Detroit’s record now stands at 11-10-3 and they will fly to Pittsburgh to face the Penguins on Saturday night.
Stars of the Game:
1.) Vincent Trocheck (FLA) – 0 G, 0 A, 0 PTS, +1
2.) Petr Mrazek (DET) – 28 SV, 30 SA, .933 SV%
3.) Jason Demers (FLA) – 1 G, 0 A, 1 PTS, +1
Box Score: https://www.nhl.com/gamecenter/fla-vs-det/2016/12/01/2016020350/recap/box-score#game=2016020350,game_state=final,lock_state=final,game_tab=boxscore