Hitting....are you kidding me?...the game starts out with hitting....then more hitting by both teams.When the Hawks scored a couple of goals in a span of , the Wings were looking to change the complexion of the game.It did not take long when Niklas Kronwall KO’d Martin Havlat with a heavy body check, one that was legal but hard.....it was not a penalty from a few analysts' views, including my own. The offensive player has the responsibility to keep the head up and it is a must to be aware of his surroundings. Marty got caught looking elsewhere and paid for it.He was unconscious for a short period of time and did leave the game with little doubt of a return to this game.Kronwall sat for 5 minutes for interference and the Wings were able to kill off the major penalty. This could prove to be a positive for Detroit, because they are going to need something positive tailing 2-0.
Goal scoring in today’s NHL is a difficult task. One sure fire way to make it easier is to get in front of the net for screens....another is to tip or change the direction of the shots being taken from great distances.The Hawks did just that in the second period to take a 3-0 lead.The defensive zone coverage for the Hawks had been outstanding and not allowing the Red Wings the 2nd and 3rd chances, but a PP goal on a deflection off the skate of a Hawk made it a 3-1 game. The momentum began to change for the Wings with another deflectable shot as Rafalski shot and Dan Cleary’s tip found the net.Before the end of the period a screen by Holmstrom and a high wrist shot by Eriksson twirled the twine from 40’......3-3 at the end of the 2nd was shown on the board......screens and tips were the flavor of the day......4:23 was the time between the 3 goals for Detroit.
So how does a team gain some momentum back?A goaltender change as Huet got the start as Khabibulin remained in the dressing room to start the 3rd.Would that get things rolling for the Hawks....no...? But it did settle things down for the home team. The period did not maintain the offensive flair the first two periods demonstrated, with the shots on goal tied at 6-6.There was not one glorious chance by either team.
The Detroit Red Wings have never won a playoff game when trailing by 3 goals....never...They will have to wait for another time.A broken stick by Lidstrom....traffic in front of Osgood.... with a shot by Walker...a great pass by Pahlsson and Patrick Sharpe scored on a wide open net!!!The Hawks win...Hawks win...!!
They move on to game 4 with the series 2-1 for Detroit.....Stay tuned!!!