Wings prevail in lengthy shootout, win streak at 6
St. Louis. — If this is St. Louis, and the Red Wings are here, of course, it goes past regulation time.
For the third straight year, these teams went to overtime — and this time beyond — with the Red Wings winning again for the third straight year, 2-1 in an eight-round shootout.
Henrik Zetterberg scored in the eighth round, the Red Wings winning the shootout, 2-1, and sending the Red Wings to their sixth consecutive victory after two season–opening losses (6-2).
Zetterberg hasn’t had as much success in the shootout in recent years. So when did Zetterberg decide on his move against Blues goalie Jake Allen?
“Probably halfway in,” Zetterberg said. “When you come in as the (eighth) shooter you don’t have much to lose.”
Goalie Petr Mrazek starred the shootout, as he did during regulation time, stopping 31 shots (seven more in the shootout) and giving the Red Wings a chance to win.
“We’ve had real good goaltending this year,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “It’s a big part of the league. Petr kept us in it in the first (period) for certain.
“I was just happy our guys stuck with it mentally and we got good goaltending for sure, and we found a way to get our game going.”
Gustav Nyquist also scored for the Red Wings in the shootout.
Both teams had glorious scoring chances in overtime, and the Red Wings had a power play for the final 19 seconds.
Frans Nielsen (short-handed) and Kevin Shattenkirk traded second-period goals.
Nielsen scored his second goal of the season in the second period, the first Red Wings’ short-handed goal, shifting the momentum of the game.
Nielsen’s goal was his second of the season and tied the game, 1-1, after the Blues had dominated the period.
Darren Helm carried the puck into the zone and dropped a pass to the trailing Nielsen, both of whom were given ample space by the retreating Blues defense.
Nielsen cut to the net and tucked the puck between the post and Allen at 13:54.
“I kind of got off a half shot, I was lucky it went in,” Nielsen said. “We can’t play turning pucks over and (the) mistakes, but we got pucks deep and outworked them and played a solid road game (the last half of the game).
“He (Mrazek) was awesome. For 30 (minutes) we didn’t play well and he kept us in it and gave us a chance to win.”
The Red Wings were happy to see Nielsen rewarded offensively, after a slow start in the points department with his new team.
“I talked to Franz today to make sure he knows he’s playing great hockey,” Blashill said. “I don’t look at points, especially with him. He’s a complete player and I wanted to make sure he knew he was playing good hockey.
“But he has the ability to put points (on the board).”
Shattenkirk gave the Blues a 1-0 lead when his shot from the point glanced off Nielsen’s skate and past Mrazek early in the second period.
But the Red Wings stayed with it, tied it with Nielsen’s goal, and thanks to Mrazek’s goaltending, finally won it on Zetterberg’s heroics in the shootout.
“I was saving him for the right time,” Blashill said with a smile. “Obviously, it was the right time. It was a good move by Hank and the one thing with him, he’s got big-time poise under pressure.
“I was thinking if they did score and we needed to come back with a goal, he was the guy for me that went at that point because he has that kind of poise under pressure.”