The Wings allowed the Washington Capitals to rally twice from a one-goal deficit, falling 3-2 to the Caps in D.C. on Tuesday evening.
Veteran netminder Chris Osgood started Tuesday night for the first time since Dec. 20 because as head coach Mike Babcock said, ““Ozzie was due, and Ozzie beat these guys this year. We just think it’s a good opportunity — he knows these guys better than Howie does.” Ozzie did not face a shot on goal until under six minutes remaining in the first period. In fact, Detroit outshot the Caps 15-3 through the first 20 minutes of play, which is impressive when you consider how potent Washington’s offense is.
The Wings took a 1-0 lead thanks to some hard work and hustling. Forward Dan Cleary spun around and threw the puck at the net from the goal line to the left of the net, scoring his 10th goal this season 4:17 into the middle frame. But with 1:55 left in the second period, the Capitals evened it up at one goal apiece. Defenseman Brian Rafalski’s blast from atop the right faceoff circle gave Detroit a 2-1 lead at the 11:07 mark of the final stanza. With 6:45 remaining in the contest, Washington tied the game up again on the power play. Forty-seven seconds later, the Caps got another one past Osgood again to take their first lead of the night. The goal would stand as the game-winner despite Detroit outshooting the Capitals 45-23.
Coming into the game, the Detroit Free Press commented on the challenge the Wings faced heading into this road game with the Caps. The Detroit News looked at how things have changed since the last time these two teams faced off at Joe Louis Arena in October.
In Other News
- The Detroit News reports that defenseman Niklas Kronwall did participate in the morning skate on Tuesday, marking the second straight day Kronner has skated. Previously, he had been only doing off-ice workouts since Dec. 20 due to a unexpected relapse. Kronwall suffered a sprained knee injury on Nov. 21 and still does not know when he’ll return to the lineup.
- Ansar Khan at MLive.com answers five pressing questions facing the Red Wings as the team pushes to make the playoffs.
- Red Wings Central evaluates the play of Wings’ prospect and Grand Rapids Griffins’ defenseman Logan Pyett, including remarks about his development from Assistant GM Jim Nill.
- Windsor Star’s Dave Waddell spoke with Nill, who says that the seeming uptick in violent hockey hits in major junior hockey does not mean that there is a lack of respect among players.
- SI.com reporter Darren Eliot believes that the Wings’ playoff hopes rest on rookie goalkeeper Jimmy Howard.
- Kyle at Babcock’s Death Stare posted “The Ultimate Offseason Guide,” discussing the many possibilities about which Wings’ players may stay or go.
- Check out the latest installment of The Obstructed View — a podcast run by the Wings’ blogosphere. Episode 6 features the bloggers behind The Production Line, Fight Night at the Joe, and Bingo Bango.
- George Malik at Snapshots addresses the Red Wings to the Palace rumors and offers up a variety of reasons why that move doesn’t make sense, but that the rumor may help Olympia Entertainment negotiate a short-term lease at JLA. Joe Hass at Winging It In Motown also chimes in with his thoughts on this rumor.