Game Review – 1/12/09 (DAL vs DET)

by Chelsea

Game:

Stars versus the Red Wings again, this time actually on Versus. Or VS. Or however they spell their name. Basically, the showdown in Big D was being aired on national TV, so there was just a bit of pressure on the Stars not to lose in a repeat performance of their 6-1 embarrassment a few days before. 

Brad Richards centered the top line for Dallas again, with Loui Eriksson on his left wing and Joel Lundqvist on his right. 

The defensive pairings didn’t change. 

First period started.

Dallas was immediately commanding, pushing towards the net to test Wings goalie Chris Osgood within fifteen seconds of the puck dropping. 

Detroit took the first penalty when Jiri Hudler tripped Krys Barch at 2:19, putting the Stars on their first power play. It was a surprisingly strong start, as Dallas forced Osgood to freeze the puck to alleviate pressure.

There was a surprising amount of goaltender penalties taken in this game, the first of which belonged to Stars goalie Marty Turco, who was given 2 minutes for delay of game at 7:04. It was served by center Mike Ribeiro.

The Stars PK worked well to prevent a power play goal, but could not continue holding back the surging Detroit offense.

Brian Rafalski opened the game’s scoring at 10:49 with a deflection past Turco. Tomas Holmstrom and Brett Lebda got the assists.

The Red Wings continued their attacks, scoring again to further their lead not even two minutes later. 

This one came from Holmstrom at 12:39 when Pavel Datsyuk ripped through Stars defense and drew Turco’s attention, only to pass across the slot to Holmstrom. Osgood got the second assist.

Being down 2-0 to the Red Wings is never a good position to be in. So, really, what better time to get your first NHL regular season goal? The Wings saw their lead cut in half by Dallas defenseman Nicklas Grossman. 

The goal came at 16:01 off a slap shot from the point, and was initially thought to have been tipped in by Mark Parrish. Grossman was eventually credited with his goal, his first in 110 games. Andrew Hutchinson and Krys Barch assisted.

However, the Stars saw their comeback stifled when Jere Lehtinen was whistled for tripping at 16:35. The Wings flexed their special teams muscles and regained their two-goal advantage half-way through the following power play. 

Marian Hossa got himself on the scoreboard at 17:43, when Nicklas Lidstrom’s shot from the point freed up a rebound in front of Turco. Hossa stuffed in the net to claim the game’s first PP goal. Datsyuk got the second assist.

The first period ended.

Because the game wasn’t on FSN, there was no Ric Renner in intermission. A moment to appreciate.

Second period started.

The tug-a-war from the first period was not lessened over intermission, as Dallas once again narrowed the points gap, within the first minute of resumed play.

At 00:52 in the second, Stephane Robidas walked the puck into the top of the faceoff circle and fired a wrist shot to beat Osgood on the glove side. He got some help from Steve Ott, who was screening the netminder in hopes to pick up a deflection or rebound, but it was Jere Lehtinen who got the only assist.

Osgood took the second goalie penalty, another delay of game, at 1:21. Robidas took a penalty as well, at 12:39 for hi sticking. 

Through the power plays and penalty killing, the momentum of the game continued to pass between the two teams, with Dallas slowly gaining the upper hand. 

The benefit of that shift became apparent late in the period, as the Stars continued the onslaught that would eventually see them outshoot the Red Wings 23-10 over those twenty minutes.

This time it really was Mark Parrish, who was fed a well-placed pass by Krys Barch and wristed the puck past Osgood before he could react. The goal came at 15:53 and served to finally erase the two-point lead that had been haunting Dallas all night. Matt Niskanen got the second assist.

Hossa did not improve their situation, putting the Stars on the power play by tripping Mike Modano. Dallas didn’t convert on the man-advantage, but were offered up another as the period ended.

Seen here is the result of Chris Osgood having fed Mike Ribeiro the blade of his goalie stick. Because the hit drew blood, it was probably already going to be a double minor, but… Ribeiro did his best to sell it, anyway. Those would be his gloves flying up in the air as he falls.

He definitely has a love-it-or-hate-it style, and frankly, we love it.

The incident occurred at 19:45 and gave the Stars 3:45 minutes of power play time to start the third with. 

Second period ended. Third period began.

What could have been a very long and productive power play was spoiled by Modano, when he got two minutes at 00:40 for hooking Henrik Zetterberg. This resulted in a 4-on-4 situation that was very beneficial for the Wings.

They were able to hold back the Stars and kill of what remained of Osgood’s double minor, building up the momentum they’d lost in the previous period. 

Detroit pulled ahead again at 5:19, when Datsyuk pulled out some sorcery to beat Turco in the high corner. Turco overdid it, trying to stop the shot with the blocker instead of simply being in position, but this doesn’t take credit from Datsyuk and his wizardry with the puck.

Johan Franzen and Brad Stuart got the assists.

Kris Draper provide Dallas with a prime opportunity to force overtime when he got a delay of game at 9:09, but it just passed as the 5th unproductive power play for the Stars.

However, when Lebda got whistled for holding on James Neal at 15:54, their hard work finally paid off. At exactly 17:00, Steve Ott did his best Brenden Morrow impression by camping out in the crease and deflecting the puck behind Osgood into the net. 

Mike Ribeiro got the primary assist for setting him up, and Brad Richards got the second. 

Regulation ended tied at 4-4, and overtime began.

OT didn’t actually last too long. When a burst of… something (confidence? adrenaline?) hit Matt Niskanen as he gained possession, he puckhandled his way past a handful of Detroit defenders. Carrying the puck straight up the slot, Niskanen backhanded it into Osgood’s face as he made a sprawling save. The rebound bounced free, and Trevor Daley was quick to capitalize. 

Loui Eriksson and Matt Niskanen got the assists.

Notes:

  • Three stars of the game, in order: Robidas, Datsyuk, Barch
  • The Stars outshot the Red Wings 49-30; the most shots on goal that Detroit has allowed in some twenty years.
  • Ott, Niskanen, Richards, and Parrish all ended scoring droughts.
  • Conclusion: The boost in outshooting their opponent that the Stars have seen recently seems to be more a product of goaltending than anything; Turco and Osgood let in the same amount of goals in regulation, despite the huge difference in shot totals (29-48). If you can’t beat them with good defense, at least beat them with awesome offense?

SHR +/-:

Nicklas Grossman: three for the goal, one for finally scoring, one for leading in blocked shots, and two for getting alpha male on the Wings all night (including that hit that nearly sent a Wing into the Stars bench); +9
Stephane Robidas: three for the goal; +3
Matt Niskanen: two for each assist and one for working hard for them; +5
Trevor Daley: three for the goal; +3
Mike Modano: minus-one for leading in giveaways with four; -1
Krys Barch: two for each assist and one for making a big difference despite getting less than five minutes playing time; +5
Toby Petersen: one for leading in hits; +1
Loui Eriksson: two for the assist; +2
Jere Lehtinen: two for the assist; +2
Andrew Hutchinson: two for the assist; +2
Mark Fistric: two for having a much-need much-missed hard-hitting style, one for not being Janik, one for not being Hutchinson, and one for not being Sydor; +5
Steve Ott: three for the goal; +3
Marty Turco: one for not letting in four goals this time- nevermind; +0
Mark Parrish: three for the goal; +3
Darryl Sydor: minus-one for being the only Star to end the game -2 and minus-one for being the only defenseman to not get a point; -2
Mike Ribeiro: two for the assist; +2
Brad Richards: two for the assist, one for leading in shots on goal, but minus-one for tying for the lead in giveaways; +2

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