Note: for anyone playing along at home, we are at the letter “S” in my alliterative names for the penalty box series.
Well time to get this recap under-PIUS SUTER SCOOOOOOOOOOORES!!!!! 1-0 Red Wings 16 seconds into the first. Persistence pays off and after a little deliberation, the Sabres don’t see a reason to challenge it. Our first lead in 100 years (5 games).
It’s all Red Wings the first few minutes, everybody getting in on the action as Zadina is robbed on a setup by Fabbri and Veleno. Listen, I’m not saying this instant good fortune is linked to Blash’s fashion choice but I’m not NOT saying it.
Quick period so far, not many whistles and we all know how Ned loves to keep the puck moving. Halfway through and shots are 7-6 Wings but the ice really seems to be tilted in our favor so far. Suter’s quick goal shut down the…sparse…crowd before they could even get remotely excited.
Staal goes into the boards awkwardly and is slow getting up. Not in the usual Red Wings way of hitting the boards because it’s attempted murder but in any case, he heads over to the bench a bit shaken up. The Blash Bingo Wheel goes a-spinnin’ as Veleno hops on with Raymond and Bertuzzi.
Sabres get their first real good look with 6 minutes to go. Okposo gets a break but fumbles the shot and Ned grabs up the puck. Wings charge right back the other way as Zadina sets up Fabbri for a one-timer and he gets all of it but Tokarski makes another big save. That’s two almost goals for Fabbri and Zadina, not the ideal result but great to see the second line getting it together.
4 minutes to go and as Detroit tries to clear it hits the ref who is inside the Wings zone. Bounce sends it to the Sabres who take advantage and yikes that was a close one but Ned keeps it out. Sabres are waking up in the last few minutes and the Wings are coughing up some turnovers. Sabres are conveniently whiffing on some of their best setup shots and when they don’t, Ned is dialed in to make the saves.
We have our first penalty of the game with 1:49 as Fabbri goes to the Sinister Souls Sarcophagus for tripping. Penalty kill goes to work and lets the Wings take a lead to the locker room.
End of the first and it’s 1-0 Wings with shots 12-9 Sabres.
Remaining 10 seconds of the penalty is killed, neeeever a doubt. Maybe this end of the ice just has the magic puck magnets because the Sabres have been strolling around the Wings zone the first couple minutes. Wings get a faceoff in the Buffalo zone which gives Raymond some room to work. DeKeyser takes a shot and the puck disappears, Tyler jumps around like he’s got ants in his pants and lo’ and behold the puck reappears out of his gear.
BIG SAVE BY NED. Only five minutes into the second but this game is looking like it’s going to be a straight up goalie duel.
Namestnikov pays homage to Erne and Fabbri by making a sliding block. Wings defensive play is getting kind of loosey-goosey. Fortunately, the Sabres are not a good team and Ned is paying attention.
Eventually, the lack of defense does catch up as Thompson passes to Skinner who fakes the wraparound and gives it back to Thompson who shoots it in the open net. Tied 1-1 with 8 left in the period.
Wheels falling off a bit now as the Wings immediately take a penalty after the goal. The Wings also only have one SOG this period so far. Veleno to the Timeout Terrarium for holding on Hagg. Uh oh. Dahlin quickly scores on the powerplay making it 2-1 Sabres. Seider was ready to block the shot to his credit but a little crosscheck to the back by Asplund slides Seider out of the way.
Wings finding their no-quit attitude finally with Erne and Smith trying to jam one home to tie the game. The Wings second shot of the period and look to be just trying to escape only one goal down to regroup for the third. Lazy passing, but to Veleno’s credit he did make a nifty steal to set up Ras for a shot (which was right into the goaltender’s belly).
Ned makes two big saves in the closing seconds keeping this game 2-1 Sabres.
Well, the third is not starting much differently than the second ended. Which is not ideal. Wings playing pass pass pass pass pass pass pass pass shoot, which at least is puck possession and showing some awareness of where people are. Which is more than we had in the second.
GROAN. Ned blocks a shot and it bounces off him across the crease leaving the net wide open for Ruotsalainen to tap it in. 3-1 Sabres with 13:30 to go.
Lucas Raymond was on his way to a full-blown breakaway when he got tripped at center ice. Could have easily been a penalty shot but instead, it’s just a powerplay. 10 minutes left and Cozens is studying at Umbrage University* for two minutes for tripping. Time for the first Rrrrrrred Wings powerplay of the game! It was a pooperplay.
*yeah the names are gonna get weird just wait until we hit X
6:36 to go and the No Quit Wings are back! Bert scores making it only 3-2 Sabres! Raymond gets himself another point. No Quit Wings isn’t a thing but we really do need a term for when the Red Wings do this thing of scoring late goals to show they aren’t dead.
TYLER BERTUZZI SCORES AGAIN! TIE GAME! More like Tie-ler Ber2zzi amirite?
3 minutes to go and Bert makes his bid for the hatty. The Wings are a different team – this really is their favorite thing now sleeping for a lot of the game and then trying to play spoiler.
Wings get two shots off in the last 10 seconds and bonus hockey here we come.
LOSER POINT ACHIEVED! One point left to grab.
Bertuzzi has another chance for three but shoots it right into the goalie. Tokarski should thank whatever stars he likes for getting an early whistle as his attempt to drop the puck back into play went right on Hronek’s stick.
take a deep breath and sit down
MORTIZ SEIDER SCORES HIS FIRST NHL GOAL AND WINS THE GAME FOR THE RED WINGS!!!!!
And I think that makes it a three point night for Raymond 🙂