Helene St. James Detroit Free Press
Published 10:41 PM EST Nov 21, 2018
Once again, Jimmy Howard had to make up for a slow start by his Detroit Red Wings teammates. Once again, the Wings went past regulation. Once again, they won.
Their Thanksgiving eve match at Little Caesars Arena against the Boston Bruins followed a season trend as the Wings had to overcome deficits. Tyler Bertuzzi and Andreas Athanasiou each delivered tying goals, and pushed the Wings into overtime for the fifth time in the last seven games. Athanasiou scored 49 seconds into overtime for a 3-2 final. The Wings are 9-2 their last 11 games and sit above .500 for the first time this season.
For a team missing its leading scorer in Bergeron (26 points in 19 games) and several defenseman including Zdeno Chara because of injuries, the Bruins didn’t have any problems gaining Detroit’s zone and testing Jimmy Howard. David Pastrnak got a shot on net from the top of the right circle in the opening minute, part of a 6-0 barrage. It took till almost seven minutes in before the Wings were able to force a save from Tuukka Rask, with Gustav Nyquist snapping a shot from the left circle. The Wings did look good while they killed a penalty to Mike Green, as they consistently won puck battles and only let the Bruins get set up once. They finally showed some resolve late in the period in establishing themselves in the Bruins’ zone, with Dylan Larkin creating a good chance from the right circle. Still, shots were 12-4 to the Bruins.
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Net front battles lost, won
The Bruins scored 4:08 into the second period. Howard made a save on Jake DeBrusk only to end up sprawled by the left side of the net, with the puck loose in the paint. Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson poked the puck across the goal line before Luke Glendening or Tyler Bertuzzi could get to it. Bertuzzi had better fortune at the other net five minutes later, when Nick Jensen’s shot from the right point hit Bertuzzi before beating Rask, making it 1-1 at 9:48. Jacob de la Rose almost scored near the end of the period but his shot hit the crossbar. The Wings had a better second period than first, but were still outshot 25-13 after 40 minutes.
Facing a rally
The Wings, who’d come back to win in four of their previous six games, faced another comeback situation when Chris Wagner was by the right post in the third period, in position to redirect Sean Kuraly’s shot from the left circle. David Backes was screening Howard on the original shot. That was part of a 6-2 edge in shots for the Bruins to start the third period. Athanasiou provided a tie at 9:59 when he drove to the Bruins’ net and was able to connect on Gustav Nyquist’s shot.
Contact Helene St. James: [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames.
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