DeKeyser's OT goal rescues Wings after 3rd-period lapse
New York — They still played for too long in their own zone and without the puck, but the Red Wings were able to turn around those two harmful trends later in the second and third periods Sunday and they prevailed in a seesaw battle with the Islanders to win 4-3 in overtime.
They did yield yet another third-period lead.
But, set up by Henrik Zetterberg, who played another outstanding game, Danny DeKeyser let a 25-foot wrist shot fly 1:02 into overtime to garner the victory.
Petr Mrazek was outstanding, and for long portions he kept it tied or, especially in the first period, thwarted several Islanders’ chances to make their lead two goals.
“Obviously, you get leads and you give them up, you don’t want to do that,” Jeff Blashill said, 24 hours after watching his team blow a 3-1 lead in the third period in a loss to the Penguins.
“I thought our guys stayed with it, even after the times we gave up those goals.”
The Wings got two goals from Mike Green, his fifth and sixth of the season, and one from Zetterberg, his sixth.
Anders Lee, Johnny Boychuk and Josh Bailey scored for the Islanders.
Green was outstanding, and nearly had a third goal for his second hat trick of the season. But it was nullified when the NHL Situation Room in Toronto determined that Luke Glendening interfered with the goalie Jaroslav Halek before the puck went in.
It would have given the Wings a 3-2 lead at 6:32 of the third period. But Zetterberg’s goal at 13:06 delivered the lead, instead.
“I mean, the replay, it was 50-50, it could have gone either way,” Green said. “So, it’s up to the refs.
“They made the call and we just had to stay composed and keep going.”
Green’s offensive contributions are considerable, given the Red Wings' struggles offensively for a second season.
Blashill has said the Wings approached Green before the season and asked that he be more assertive offensively. After last season when many of his shots seemed to have trouble getting through from the points, Green is far more often pinching down in the zone.
“It’s tough to find that balance at times," Green said. "With the way we play and the system, now, there’s times you can jump. It’s just a matter of doing it consistently and getting the trust, I think, of your forwards.
“I thought the forwards moved up the ice with pucks tonight and they created those holes for us.”
Zetterberg said the victory was important.
“Especially when they disallowed the goal on Greener, but then we still got the third one and then tied it up, again,” he said, of the team’s resilience.
“It was good to see that we found a way to win.”
In overtime, Zetterberg said, the team pressed.
“I think we just knew what we had to do: Just keep going,” he said, after all the ups and downs of the game and some misfortune.
“We knew we had to create some chances and just minimize turnovers and get the puck deep.”
Mrazek was outstanding, throughout.
“After two losses in overtime, it’s nice to have the win,” he said. “When you have a lead, you’re just trying to play defense and stop as many pucks as you can.
“Overtime is just luck, I would say. Three-on-three, you both have a lot of chances.”
Frans Nielsen got his ninth assist and 15th point of the season on Green’s first goal, tying the game 1-1 at 12:53 of the first period.
It was a big night for Nielsen
He played for the Islanders for 10 years and receiving applause when he was announced in the starting lineup and a standing ovation after recorded highlights of his career were played on the scoreboard during a break in the first period.