FINAL
TBL
5
PHI
3
FINAL
CBJ
2
DET
7
FINAL
OTT
6
WPG
4
FINAL
DAL
4
CGY
5
FINAL
LAK
0
VAN
1
FINAL
COL
1
SJS
5
CBJ
29-46-7
DET
48-28-6

26 SOG
39 SOG

Wings clinch playoff spot with 7-2 win

Brian Hedger  - NHL.com Correspondent | Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:50 AM

DETROIT -- Mike Babcock and his players can officially stop saying they just want to get into the playoffs now.

The Detroit Red Wings are in the NHL's postseason field for the 21st straight season after a 7-2 rout of the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night at Joe Louis Arena and now it's time for them to start thinking of bigger goals.

"We've had such good teams and we've clinched the playoffs, but we want to win the Stanley Cup. That's our end goal," said Tomas Holmstrom, who scored for the first time in 28 games and finished with a pair of power-play goals in the first to help spark the rout. "It's put us in good position, but we have to get home ice advantage. It’s pretty good, for sure, getting in 21 straight years."

The playoff clinch also extended what was already the longest active streak of consecutive playoff berths in any of the four major professional sports and set a new team record -- topping the 20 straight the Red Wings strung together from 1938-39 to 1957-58.

The next longest active streak in the NHL is seven straight appearances by the San Jose Sharks, who are currently locked in a battle with Colorado, Los Angeles and Phoenix for one of the last postseason slots in the Western Conference.

"For this group, it just means that we're in this year and that's all that really matters," said Babcock, whose team jumped back ahead of idle Nashville by a point for second in the Central Division and fourth in the West. "We've got to get playing good. But when you look at a franchise that's been there 21 years in a row, it's spectacular. Obviously the Ilitches (Detroit's owners) have done a great job."

All the Red Wings (46-25-5) needed was a win to clinch their playoff spot and made sure to secure it early with four goals in the first, including the two from Holmstrom, one by Jiri Hudler and the first of rookie Gustav Nyquist's NHL career.

"It's good to see and it's probably not the last (one)," quipped star center Henrik Zetterberg, to whom Nyquist is often compared. "It's good (for him) to get that one out of the way. He's been playing great for us."

Zetterberg has, too.

He's given Detroit 12 goals and 19 assists in the past 24 games and dished out four primary assists in this game, including both of Holmstrom's goals. Zetterberg also picked up primary assists on Nicklas Lidstrom's goal in the second and Pavel Datsyuk's goal in the third to make it 7-0 just 1:25 into the final period.

Holmstrom's power-play tallies also gave a jolt to Detroit's struggling power play, which had scored just once in 35 man-advantage situations coming into the game. The Wings went 2-for-6 against the Jackets (24-45-7) and hope it sparks a resurgence in their offensive special teams unit.

Holmstrom, by the way, now has 242 goals with exactly half of them (121) coming on the power play -- where he makes a living camping in front of the net.

"Not really (surprising)," Lidstrom said. "We know where he's going to be. He's going to be right in front of the net and tonight they made some great plays for him, but he finished them too. It was great to see him get those two goals."

Holmstrom lives to scrap in front of the net, but overall this game against wasn't much of a battle at all. The Wings again played without leading goal scorer Johan Franzen (back), starting goalie Jimmy Howard (groin) and big-bodied defenseman Jonathan Ericsson (wrist), but none were missed.

Todd Bertuzzi also dished out four helpers for Detroit, which will face the Blue Jackets again on Wednesday in Columbus.

"They took it to us," said Jackets star forward Rick Nash, who scored one of two Columbus goals in the third. "It showed they are a great team. We weren't ready. (Detroit's playoff streak) is unbelievable. It just shows the reputation of their organization and the kind of job they do from the bottom to the top of the organization.”

The Jackets finally got on the board with Mark Letestu's goal 19 seconds after Datsyuk's in the thrid, but it was nothing more than a side note to end Ty Conklin's shutout bid. Meanwhile, it's already been quite the week for Holmstrom and it's only a couple days into it.

On Sunday, the 39-year old veteran of 15 NHL seasons was officially chosen by media members in Detroit as the Red Wings' candidate for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for his perseverance and dedication to the sport of hockey.

On Monday, he scored a goal for the first time since Jan.17 and followed it up in the same period with another one  to reach 10 for the season. Hudler's goal, meanwhile, was his 23rd of the season -- which tied his career high.

Nyquist's was not only the first of the promising rookie's career, but capped another highlight-reel assist by Datsyuk -- who somehow spotted the Swedish rookie on the back side of the net and slipped a blind backhand pass right to him for an easy tip-in.

In order to get Nyquist the puck, however, Datsyuk first had to slide it under the stick of Columbus defenseman John Moore in the slot.

"It feels great,"said the 22-year old Nyquist, who now has six points in his last seven games. "It's nice to get the first one out of the way, especially the way it panned out too. The pass by Datsyuk was unbelievable. It was a fun way to score your first goal."

Columbus goalie Steve Mason (22 saves) didn't have nearly as much fun. He also didn't have a chance to stop that scoring play or most of the plays that led to his six goals allowed. The Blue Jackets defense was almost non-existent at times and Columbus, the League's worst team in the standings, was dominated as a result.

"We could've had Patrick Roy in there (or) Ken Dryden … (it) wouldn't have mattered," Columbus interim coach Todd Richards said. "You can't fault the goaltender on the first four. It was too easy for them."
1st2nd3rdT
CBJ
DET
Scoring Summary
1st Period
01:06DET PPG - Tomas Holmstrom (9) Wrist shot - ASST: Henrik Zetterberg (42), Niklas Kronwall (20) 1 - 0 DET
05:35DET Gustav Nyquist (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Pavel Datsyuk (44), Todd Bertuzzi (19) 2 - 0 DET
08:55DET PPG - Tomas Holmstrom (10) Wrist shot - ASST: Henrik Zetterberg (43), Niklas Kronwall (21) 3 - 0 DET
09:51DET Jiri Hudler (23) Wrist shot - ASST: Valtteri Filppula (40), Todd Bertuzzi (20) 4 - 0 DET
2nd Period
06:17DET Nicklas Lidstrom (11) Slapshot - ASST: Henrik Zetterberg (44), Ian White (25) 5 - 0 DET
08:34DET Brad Stuart (6) Snap shot - ASST: Todd Bertuzzi (21), Valtteri Filppula (41) 6 - 0 DET
3rd Period
01:25DET Pavel Datsyuk (18) Wrist shot - ASST: Henrik Zetterberg (45), Todd Bertuzzi (22) 7 - 0 DET
01:44CBJ Mark Letestu (11) Wrist shot - ASST: Rick Nash (25), Nikita Nikitin (21) 7 - 1 DET
10:32CBJ Rick Nash (27) Slapshot - ASST: Vinny Prospal (35), Jack Johnson (23) 7 - 2 DET
Three Stars of the Game
Henrik Zetterberg
1st
G: 0Shots: 3
A: 4Hits: 0
PTS: 4PIM: 2
+/-: 2TOI: 18:00
Todd Bertuzzi
2nd
G: 0Shots: 1
A: 4Hits: 2
PTS: 4PIM: 0
+/-: 5TOI: 16:46
Tomas Holmstrom
3rd
G: 2Shots: 2
A: 0Hits: 1
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 13:42
Penalty Summary
1st Period
00:47CBJ Cam Atkinson  Tripping against  Gustav Nyquist
07:50CBJ Derek Dorsett  Boarding against  Justin Abdelkader
11:15DET Justin Abdelkader  Tripping against  Derick Brassard
16:59DET Niklas Kronwall  Hooking against  Rick Nash
2nd Period
01:04CBJ Derick Brassard  Tripping against  Todd Bertuzzi
06:17CBJ Vinny Prospal  Hooking against  Jiri Hudler
12:50CBJ Jared Boll  Roughing against  Ty Conklin
19:18CBJ Derick Brassard  Too many men/ice - bench
3rd Period
02:23DET Ian White  Tripping against  Derick Brassard
13:59DET Henrik Zetterberg  Tripping against  Rick Nash
17:56CBJ Derek Dorsett  Misconduct (10 min) against  Justin Abdelkader
shots by period
PeriodCBJDET
1st415
2nd916
3rd138
Total2639
Team Stats
CategoryCBJDET
Power Plays0/42/6
Hits2720
Faceoff Wins3428
Giveaways48
Takeaways35
Blocked Shots187
Penalty Minutes228
  • COLUMBUS
  • DETROIT
#skatersPosGA+/-SPIMTOI
4J. MooreD00-22015:54
5A. JohnsonD00-30010:04
6N. NikitinD0102021:59
7J. JohnsonD01-10031:25
9C. GilliesC00-1009:19
13C. AtkinsonR00-22214:17
15D. DorsettR00021216:05
16D. BrassardC00-42218:53
17M. LetestuC1011020:49
18R. UmbergerC00-32016:41
19R. JohansenC000009:14
22V. ProspalL0101217:07
23B. LebdaD00-13016:26
25R. RussellL0000013:26
40J. BollR0001211:39
43D. BoyceC0000010:51
58D. SavardD0013019:46
61R. NashL1105016:56
#GoaliesSvSASv%TOI
1S. Mason2228.78628:34
41A. York1011.90931:26
#skatersPosGA+/-SPIMTOI
4J. KindlD0013017:54
5N. LidstromD1023017:52
8J. AbdelkaderL00-10213:19
11D. ClearyR00-13013:44
13P. DatsyukC1124017:42
14G. NyquistR1012011:17
18I. WhiteD0123216:42
20D. MillerL00-10013:55
23B. StuartD1012022:00
26J. HudlerC1013014:27
27K. QuinceyD0016022:18
39J. MursakL000107:46
40H. ZetterbergL0423218:00
44T. BertuzziR0451016:46
48C. EmmertonC0000011:49
51V. FilppulaC0222019:27
55N. KronwallD02-11223:31
96T. HolmstromL2002013:42
#GoaliesSvSASv%TOI
29T. Conklin2426.92359:49