comments_image Comments

Wings beat Ducks to advance in NHL playoffs

Justin Abdelkader of the Detroit Red Wings celebrates a goal during their game against the Anaheim Ducks on May 12, 2013
Justin Abdelkader of the Detroit Red Wings celebrates a goal during their game against the Anaheim Ducks on May 12, 2013. He scored a shorthanded goal as Detroit advanced to the second round of the NHL playoffs with a 3-2 win over Anaheim.

Justin Abdelkader scored a shorthanded goal and Henrik Zetterberg had a goal and an assist as Detroit advanced to the second round of the NHL playoffs with a 3-2 win over Anaheim.

Abdelkader scored an unassisted goal late in the first period while killing a penalty as the Red Wings won the best-of-seven series four games to three.

Abdelkader picked up a loose puck at centre ice and broke in on goal before faking once then sliding the puck between Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller's legs in front of a crowd of 17,412 Sunday night at the Honda Center arena.

"It was tough. It was a tight series," said Zetterberg, who was also the Red Wings' overtime hero in game six. "They were a lot of overtime games but I think the bounces were on our side."

American Jimmy Howard had a strong game in goal, making 31 saves for Detroit, who will face the top seeded Chicago Blackhawks in the second round of the NHL's post-season.

Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks is pursued by Detroit Red Wings' Henrik Zetterberg on May 12, 2013
Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks is pursued by Detroit Red Wings' Henrik Zetterberg on May 12, 2013. Zetterberg had a goal and an assist as Detroit advanced to the second round of the NHL playoffs with a 3-2 win over Anaheim.

Four of the seven games in the series went to extra time but there was no overtime drama Sunday night as Detroit got all the scoring they needed in regulation.

Valtteri Filppula also scored for Detroit, who led 2-1 after the first period and 3-1 heading into the third.

Zetterberg, of Sweden, was the hero in Friday's win, scoring 64 seconds into overtime to lift Detroit to a 4-3 victory and forced the winner-take-all game seven.

The Red Wings got off to a fast start Sunday, then controlled the tempo of the contest with their superior foot speed before holding on in the final minutes for the win.

They stuck to their game plan which included using a strong forecheck to force the slower Anaheim defencemen to make mistakes and turn the puck over in their own end.

"We didn't sit back," Howard said. "We learned from past games to continue to get in on the forecheck."

The Detroit Red Wings' goaltender Jimmy Howard (C) and Jonathan Ericsson (R) celebrate their 3-2 victory on May 12, 2013
(L-R) Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks looks on, as goaltender Jimmy Howard and Jonathan Ericsson of the Detroit Red Wings celebrate their 3-2 victory on May 12, 2013. "We didn't sit back," Howard said.

Rookie forward Emerson Etem scored the first goal for the Ducks 13:48 into the first period. He showed great patience by cutting across the front of the slot area then beating Howard up high with a wrist shot to tie the game at 1-1.

Canadian defenceman Francois Beauchemin got credit for the Ducks' second goal with 3:17 left in the third to make it 3-2.

Beauchemin threw the puck in front of the Detroit goal from the right side and it bounced off the right skate of Detroit defenceman Jonathan Ericsson and past Howard.

Finnish star Teemu Selanne, who may have been playing his final game in a brilliant 20-year NHL career, had no points and one shot in 11:16 minutes of action for Anaheim.

"It is very disappointing we had two chances to close the series but we didn't," Selanne said.

The 42-year-old Selanne said he would take some time over the off season to decide whether he wants to come back for another campaign.

"I don't have any answers," said Selanne, who has 675 career goals in 1,487 games. "It is a big decision again. I want to take some time off and clear my head and think about what is the next step.

"I don't have to play but this season has been so much fun."

Share