| Detroit Free Press
The Detroit Red Wings were unable to build a winning streak, but for a team that has struggled as much as they have, keeping the score close against a good opponent is progress.
The Wings (3-9-2) scored early on the Florida Panthers Tuesday at BB&T Center but were not able to sustain pressure and lost, 2-1.
Considering how the turbulent the season already has been — the Wings lost five players to COVID-19 in the opening week — looking competitive against one of the better teams in the Central Division is a step forward. The Wings snapped an eight-game skid against the Panthers Sunday, and played Tuesday without Tyler Bertuzzi and Luke Glendening, both of whom are sidelined by upper-body injuries.
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The Wings squandered three power play opportunities, including two in the third period, falling to 4-for-43 on man advantages this season. Thomas Greiss was pulled with a minute-plus in the third period for an extra attacker.
Filip Zadina earned his second point in three games after being sidelined two weeks with COVID-19. He picked up his first goal of the season thanks to excellent pressure in the neutral zone, leading to a Panthers turnover. Dylan Larkin got the puck to Zadina, who used his right leg to kick the puck to his stick as he slid to the bottom of the left circle, making for an awkward — but successful — angle on Sergei Bobrovsky at 3:31 of the first period. It was Larkin’s fifth assist of the season. The Panthers tied it up at 15:54 when Alex Wennberg had time and space in front of Greiss to score for the second time in two games.
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With Glendening unavailable after a hit in Sunday’s game from Radko Gudas, Anthony Mantha was back in the lineup after being a healthy scratch in Sunday’s victory. Mantha started on a line with Vladislav Namestnikov and Darren Helm, as Larkin was with Zadina and Mathias Brome. Robby Fabbri centered Bobby Ryan and Givani Smith. Mantha played just short of six minutes in the first period, and did not register a shot on net. Mantha hit the right goalpost on a scoring chance in the second period.
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Penalty kill woes
The Wings gave up a power play goal to the Panthers midway through the second period. They were doing a good job containing the Panthers, but Patric Hornqvist recorded his sixth goal of the season when a puck fired by Aaron Ekblad hit Hornqvist’s chin as he was in front of Detroit’s net. Hornqvist was the last player drafted in the 2005, taken at 230th by the Nashville Predators.
Contact Helene St. James at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail.