The Stat Line Of The Night – 5/6/10 – Johan Franzen
With their backs against the wall and elimination staring them in the face, the Detroit Red Wings needed to come out firing last night at Joe Louis Arena if they wanted to avoid being swept from the playoffs in front of their hometown fans. They did just that, and it was none other than the man they call “the Mule” leading the charge.
Johan Franzen was absolutely unstoppable in what was one of the most dominating playoff performances thus far this year. In fact, his first period heroics may have very well been the most impressive 20 minutes of playoff hockey ever. Only twelve minutes into the the game, Franzen had already recorded three goals and an assist for a 4-0 Red Wings lead over the San Jose Sharks (initially, he had been credited with all four goals, but the first was later changed to Todd Bertuzzi).
Franzen would eventually get his fourth goal 7:33 into the third, and finished the game with an impressive six points (4 goals, 2 assists). He, along with linemates Henrik Zetterberg and Todd Bertuzzi, were a force to be reckoned with, combining for 5 goals and 13 points on the night. When it was all said and done, the Wings would make a statement with a 7-1 victory. They are still a long ways away from mounting any sort of a comeback in their best-of-seven series, but if they continue to play like this, what was once a 3-0 all-but-decided Western Conference semi-finals, may soon become a lot more interesting.