Total Pro Sports – No Lidstrom. No Datsyuk. No Draper. No problem. That was the case for the Detroit Red Wings in game number 4 as they defeated the Chicago Blackhawks easily by a score of 6-1. With the win the Wings now hold a 3-1 series edge and have all but solidified their place in the Stanley Cup finals where they will likely play the Pittsburgh Penguins for the second year in a row.
Even with two of their best players out, Detroit dominated the pace from start to finish, leading 2-0 after the first period, and 5-1 after the second. The team’s other big names needed to step up if there wished to avoid losing their second game in a row and that was exactly what they did. Henrik Zetterberg scored two, Marian Hossa had two of his own, and Johan Franzen and Valteri Filppula each added one apiece.
The firepower of the Wing players caused Blackhawks coach Joel Quenville to pull starting goalie Cristobal Huet at one point, only to put him back in for the start of the third. Huet was in for an injured Nikolai Khabibulin. Meanwhile, at the other end of the rink, Detroit goalie Chris Osgood also left the game with an undisclosed injury.
It is unsure what the status of Lidstrom, Datsyuk, Draper and Osgood are for game five on Wednesday night, but it is very likely that if they can play, they will. Mike Babcock will leave nothing to chance against a resilient Chicago team.
Besides all the great goals, there was also another interesting play in yesterday’s game. With the Wings comfortably in the lead late in the third, cameras caught an altercation between Hawks forward Patrick Kane and Johan Franzen. As the two skated behind the net after the whistle, they continued to jaw at each other. That’s when Franzen snatched the mouth guard from Kane’s mouth and threw it.
Kane was no longer the only thing that appeared to be lost on the ice. Now he had to worry about his mouth guard too. If the Blackhawks are to have any chance at coming back against the Wings, Kane will have to find his game. As for finding his mouthguard. Let’s just hope that if he did, he washed it first before using it again.