Red Wings get break in win over Kings
DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings haven’t had much luck around the net lately but they got a huge break on Saturday night.
Left winger Tomas Tatar scored the only goal of the shootout to give Detroit a 3-2 come-from-behind win over the Los Angeles Kings at Joe Louis Arena on Saturday night.
The game got to the shootout because of the Red Wings’ disputed power-play goal with 49 seconds left in regulation that sent the contest into overtime.
Defenseman Niklas Kronwall was credited with his fifth goal on a shot that was deflected and hit far up on the netting behind the net, bounced down and went in off Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Quick’s back. Neither referee, Rob Martell nor Dan O‘Halloran, saw the puck hit the netting to whistle the play dead and it wasn’t reviewable.
“I didn’t know where it went. Skating around the ice right after and all of a sudden the puck was in their net and nobody really knew what to think,” Kronwall said. “I think everyone thought it went off the mesh and came back for some reason. But they called it a goal, and you know what, at this stage we’ll take it.”
Quick was controlled in his reaction.
“On the video, you could see it. It’s clear, but non-reviewable. They get a goal that shouldn’t have been a goal,” he said. “I‘m sure we’ll get one back here in the future. It’s the way it works. Sometimes you get the bounce, sometimes you don‘t.”
“That’s embarrassing for the league,” Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter said. “It doesn’t matter if we would’ve scored it or they scored it. That’s embarrassing.”
It was also the Red Wings’ first power-play goal in 27 chances and came with goalie Jimmy Howard pulled for a 6-on-4 advantage.
Center Henrik Zetterberg had a goal and an assist and Howard stopped 30 shots in the first 65 minutes. Detroit lost its two previous games by 1-0 scores.
“You take it and run with it,” Howard said of the break on Kronwall’s goal.
Centers Mike Richards and Jeff Carter scored for Los Angeles in regulation and Quick made 33 saves.
“That’s a tough bounce. It’s a black puck, a little thing up in the sky, and it’s tough for the refs to see it,” Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said. “I think I‘m the only person on the whole ice that saw it, so obviously that made it tough. We got one point out of it, that’s the only positive you can take.”
Carter gave the Kings a 2-1 lead with a power-play goal with 2:15 left in the third. He put in the rebound of Doughty’s shot.
After making the playoffs for 22 consecutive seasons, Detroit is out of the playoffs in the Eastern Conference standings. The Red Wings are part of a five-team jumble in contention for the conference’s two wild-card playoff spots.
Howard and Quick -- two of the three Team USA Olympic goaltenders -- came together and had a little bit of a shoving match at center ice with 8:16 left in the second period after a scrum that began after Howard and Richards had a shoving match behind the Detroit net. The sequence started when Kings left winger Kyle Clifford slid into Howard in the crease and then didn’t immediately get up.
“We were just discussing what we were going to do in Sochi,” Howard said tongue in cheek about his interaction with Quick.
Howard and Richards each received roughing minors.
Richards opened the scoring with a power-play goal 9:06 into the second period. His shot from the right circle deflected off Red Wings defenseman Kyle Quincey’s stick for Richards’ seventh goal and first in 24 games.
But Zetterberg tied it at 1 just 41 seconds later from in front of the net. It was Zetterberg’s 15th goal and snapped Detroit’s scoreless stretch of 152 minutes and 21 seconds.
NOTE: Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter had more to say about D Niklas Kronwall’s goal, which came with LW Dwight King in the penalty box for closing his hand on the puck. “They could see the puck when Dwight King covered it with his hand, but they couldn’t see it when it went over the barn and came back in.”
Sutter said. ... Detroit was without C Pavel Datsyuk (lower body injury), RW Johan Franzen (post-concussion syndrome), RW Daniel Alfredsson (back spasms), C Darren Helm (groin), Joakim Andersson (lower body), D Jonathan Ericsson (ribs) and G Jonas Gustavsson (groin). ... Los Angeles D Alec Martinez is from the Detroit suburb of Rochester Hills. ... Red Wings LW Tomas Tatar returned after missing a game because of his father’s funeral in Slovakia. ... It was the Red Wings’ first game at Joe Louis Arena since Dec. 23.