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Blues rally for 4-3 win over Wings

Wednesday, 11.14.2007 / 1:30 AM / Roundup

By John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

The St. Louis Blues busted out with four-goals in the second period en route to a 4-3 victory over the Central Division rival Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night. 
Though his team has the best record in the Western Conference, Detroit coach Mike Babcock feels the Red Wings lack a killer instinct on some nights. Tuesday was one of them.
   
The Wings led 2-0 after one period in St. Louis and outshot the Blues 17-7 in the second period. But St. Louis put four of the seven shots behind Dominik Hasek and survived a late third-period goal for a 4-3 victory.

Video 
   
“I think we’ve been guilty a few times of not having that killer instinct,” Babcock said after his team’s second straight road loss. “We’ve got to put our foot on them and not let them up, and we didn't do that.”
   
Instead, the Blues got two goals by rookie David Perron and one each from Keith Tkachuk and Jamal Mayers to send Hasek to the bench after stopping just eight of the 12 shots he faced.
   
“You need a little bit of luck and we needed contributions from other guys,” Mayers said. “We got that.”
   
Tkachuk gave the Blues some life when he scored at 5:09 of the second period during a two-man power play. Perron then tied the game by beating Hasek on a breakaway at 13:14, and put them ahead 1:33 later by banging in Steve Wagner’s rebound. Mayers ripped a wrist shot past Hasek from the right circle 64 seconds after that, giving the Blues three goals on four shots — and leaving Babcock displeased.
   
“It's disappointing,” he said. “Let's not kid ourselves. We’re up 2-0, we’re on the road in our division. You’ve got to find a way to keep on going.”
   
Perron is going to force the Blues to make a decision soon — after he plays one more game, they’ll have to determine whether they want to keep him for the season or send him back to his junior team in Lewiston, Maine.
   
“You always have to prove something,” said Perron, who doubled his season total and now has four goals. “Even if I stay the whole year, I still have to prove that the team made a good decision. I'm trying to play those kinds of games like I did tonight every night.”
   
For 20 minutes, it looked like the Wings would coast to victory. Pavel Datsyuk and Dan Cleary scored, and Detroit limited the Blues to five shots in the first period.
   
“We came in the dressing room, and I said, ‘Guys, this is the Minnesota game,''' Blues coach Andy Murray said of the Blues' 3-2 victory at Minnesota on Nov. 1. ''This is the energy we had in Minnesota, which might have been our best game of the year. I felt that. I felt that we were skating. Our theme was to be relentless and stick with it.”
   
The Blues gave up a goal to Valtteri Filppula with 4:47 remaining in regulation, but did end Henrik Zetterberg’s 17-game points streak. Zetterberg had at least one point in every Wings game this season until Tuesday.
   
Thrashers 3, Panthers 2, OT
   
Ilya Kovalchuk wouldn’t let the Atlanta Thrashers lose. Then he made sure they won.
   
Marian Hossa banged the rebound of Kovalchuk’s shot into the Florida net with three seconds left in regulation to force overtime, and Kovalchuk scored the game-winner 25 seconds into OT to give Atlanta its fourth victory in five games.
   
“There was no quit in our game,” GM-interim coach Don Waddell said. “We kept coming and coming and finally got a break at the end.”
   
Florida’s David Booth broke a 1-1 tie when he beat Johan Hedberg with 4:31 left in regulation. But with the Thrashers skating 6-on-4 during a power play with Hedberg on the bench, Florida goaltender Craig Anderson couldn’t control Kovalchuk’s slap shot from the left circle. Hossa fired home the rebound for his seventh goal.
   
“Six on four — it’s a tough way to have a goal scored against you,” said Florida defenseman Greg Campbell, who was called for tripping with 1:09 remaining to set up the power play.
   
In the overtime, Kovalchuk beat Anderson from the right circle after a pass by Todd White.
   
“He definitely has a nose for openings, and that makes him a fun guy to play with,” said White, who tied the game at 1-1 early in the second period after Ville Peltonen put the Panthers ahead with the only goal in the first. “He always sees where the open space is and goes there.”
   
White made the play by stealing the puck from defenseman Jay Bouwmeester against the left-wing boards and backhanding a pass to Kovalchuk, who stopped quickly and fired the puck under Anderson’s pads.
   
“I was just trying to put pressure on Bouwmeester,” White said. “'I knew he didn't have an out. He had nobody to pass to. I was just hoping Kovy was sniffing on the play, trying to get a break, and he was.”
   
Florida coach Jacques Martin wasn’t happy after seeing two points turn into one.
   
“It was disappointing because we put out a strong effort for a road game," Martin said after the Panthers’ fourth straight loss. “I thought we battled hard. It was bad luck for sure from the standpoint that the puck went in. We should have won the game 2-1.”
   
Flames 3, Wild 2 | Video
   
Kristian Huselius scored with 52.5 seconds remaining in regulation to lift the Calgary Flames to a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild.
The Pengrowth Saddledome is still a house of horrors for Minnesota. Kristian Huselius scored with 52.5 seconds remaining in regulation as the Wild felll to 3-13-3-1 in Calgary since entering the NHL.
   
It looked like the Wild might get their fourth win in 20 visits to Calgary when Mikko Koivu scored his second goal of the third period, deflecting Petteri Nummelin’s shot into the net at 9:52 to give Minnesota a 2-1 lead. But 21 seconds later, Jarome Iginla’s shot pinballed off defensemen Brent Burns and Nick Schultz and into the net to tie the score.
   
“It’s unreal,” Wild coach Jacques Lemaire said of the tying goal. “We’re leading, and they take a shot that hits Nick and Brent and goes into the net.”
   
Huselius’ bad-angled wrist shot from the left wing beat Niklas Backstrom, ended the Flames’ five-game losing streak
   
“We're getting back to better habits and competing harder," said Iginla. "It feels good to get a win."

The loss was the Wild's ninth in their last 10 games at the Saddledome.    “I thought we had them,” Lemaire said. “That last goal was a bad goal. You wonder what we have to do to get a win here. We definitely didn’t have any luck tonight.”
   
The Wild again played without two-thirds of its top line — both Marian Gaborik and Pavol Demitra were out with groin injuries.
   
Through the first two periods, the only goal was Dion Phaneuf’s power-play slap shot for Calgary at 15:43 of the first period. Koivu tied the game 3:17 into the third period, redirecting Mark Parrish’s pass past Miikka Kiprusoff.
   
“They don’t count much in a loss,” Koivu said of his two goals. “We play to win. We have to find a way to keep the lead.”

Ducks 4, Kings 3, SO | Video
   
Los Angeles made another third-period comeback, but Anaheim got two points in this season’s first edition of the newly named “Freeway Faceoff” when Corey Perry and Andy McDonald scored in the shootout.
   
The Kings overcame a 4-0 deficit late in the third period against Dallas on Saturday and won in overtime. This time, they spotted the Ducks a 3-1 lead after two periods, but forced the overtime when Matt Moulson tapped in Alexander Frolov’s pass at 4:36 and Michael Cammalleri ripped a screened slap shot past Jean-Sebastien Giguere at 13:11 during a 5-on-3 power play.
   
“It was a good sign that we were able to stay with it,” Cammalleri said.
   
The Kings had a power play late in regulation and early in overtime, but were unable to capitalize, and Anaheim won its third consecutive shootout as Perry and McDonald beat Jason LaBarbera while Giguere stopped both shots. He also made 28 saves and enabled the Ducks to withstand the Kings’ third-period surge to get the two points.
   
“He’s been playing great for us,” said Ducks forward Todd Marchant, whose first-period goal made it 2-0. “We’re going to need that.”
   
Anaheim’s Ryan Getzlaf opened the scoring at 15:14 on a one-timer from the left point during a power play. Marchant’s goal at 16:30 gave the Ducks their first 2-0 lead at home this season, but the Kings cut the margin to 2-1 with 14 seconds left in the period on Tom Preissing’s power-play goal.
   
Kent Huskins restored the Ducks’ two-goal margin at 14:51 of the second period, beating LaBarbera with a one-timer from the point after the Kings’ goalie had lost his stick, but Anaheim couldn’t hold off the Kings in the third.
   
“When we have a two-goal lead, we have to keep it,” McDonald said.
   
Despite losing the shootout, the Kings weren’t unhappy with the point.
   
“You always want that extra point, especially against those guys,” Cammalleri said of the defending Stanley Cup champions. “But with that effort, we’ll have a lot of success.”

Material from wire services and team media were used in this report
Quote of the Day

As a player, it's obviously a sad day, but to be on the ice with some of those guys and show our respect as both teams did around center ice, it's definitely a nice touch.

— Devils defenseman Damon Severson on the ceremony before game Saturday against the Senators in Ottawa
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