Skip to main content
game recap

Nielsen scores two goals, Red Wings rally past Canadiens

Zadina breaks tie with 3:52 left for Detroit; Montreal 0-6-1 in past seven

by Dave Hogg / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Zadina's go-ahead goal

MTL@DET: Zadina nets Erne's dish to claim lead

Filip Zadina cuts to the slot and buries a one-timer from Adam Erne to put the Red Wings back ahead in the 3rd

  • 00:37 •

DETROIT -- Filip Zadina scored with 3:52 left, and the Detroit Red Wings won 4-3 against the Montreal Canadiens at Little Caesars Arena on Tuesday.

Detroit trailed 2-0 and 3-2, but Zadina put the Red Wings ahead for the first time with his fifth goal of the season.

"It means a lot for me -- I think that is the best goal of my career," the rookie said. "We really needed to win a game. This was a huge win for us. We showed each other that we never stop playing hockey."

 

[WATCH: All Canadiens vs. Red Wings highlights]

 

For Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill, Zadina's most impressive play had come a few seconds earlier.

"He laid the puck down the wall instead of trying to make a great play," Blashill said. "That gave us an O-zone possession that led to the goal. That's not the play he would have probably tried a year ago -- he would have tried to make something spectacular happen."

Frans Nielsen scored twice for Detroit (11-30-3), which had lost eight of nine. Jonathan Bernier made 23 saves.

Video: MTL@DET: Nielsen nets his second on the rush

"This is a great feeling," said Nielsen, who came into the game with one goal in 38 games this season. "It's good to get a win, but it's been tough for me. I've tried to bring my best game every night, but I'm old enough to know that you just have to stick with it."

Nick Suzuki had a goal and an assist for Montreal (18-19-7), which is 0-6-1 in its past seven games. Charlie Lindgren made 26 saves.

Video: MTL@DET: Suzuki nets backhander in front for PPG

"We had a 2-1 lead going into the third period, and I thought everyone in this room thought we were going to finish it off," Lindgren said. "We knew we had the chance to put them away, but they scored in the first minute of the period and then it was anyone's game. They made more big plays than we did at the end."

Montreal has lost all three meetings with the Red Wings this season, including two at home.

"Yeah, that hurts, obviously," said Tomas Tatar, who started his NHL career in Detroit. "There's no excuse -- we had a one-goal lead going into the third period and they just finished the game with more energy than we did."

Montreal took a 1-0 lead with a shorthanded goal at 12:48 of the first period. Artturi Lehkonen stepped in front of Filip Hronek's cross-ice pass and broke in alone for his 10th goal of the season.

Video: MTL@DET: Lehkonen scores on shorthanded breakaway

Suzuki made it 2-0 at 6:31 of the second period on a 5-on-3 power play.

Nielsen's power-play goal pulled the Red Wings within 2-1 at 12:22. Givani Smith had an assist for his first NHL point.

Robby Fabbri tied the game 51 seconds into the third period, scoring over Lindgren's glove, but Montreal took a 3-2 lead at 6:13 when Victor Mete's pass deflected in off Hronek's skate.

Video: MTL@DET: Fabbri ties it off Bertuzzi's turnover

"We've talked a lot about the times we've had a setback in a game and melted," Blashill said. "Tonight, they got that goal out of nowhere, but we just kept playing."

Ilya Kovalchuk picked up his second assist of the game on Mete's goal, giving him three in two games with the Canadiens.

Nielsen scored his second goal of the game at 11:19 to make it 3-3, finishing off a breakaway with a backhand past Lindgren.

"That wasn't the move I wanted -- I was going to shoot on the forehand, but it bobbled on me at the last second," he said. "I didn't have a choice but to settle it down and go backhand."

 

They said it

"The effort is there for the most part, but we're lacking at times the commitment to do the right things. Whether it is being lazy on the backcheck or the decisions we make with the puck, it is killing us right now. Our lineup is thin, so we're asking a lot of certain players and I think there's an element of fatigue setting in." -- Canadiens coach Claude Julien

"He's a much better player than he was a year ago, and he's worked hard to get there, so he deserves the compliment. Certainly, a lot of that is confidence, but he's also doing a really good job of stopping pucks and winning battles. That means he's got the puck more and he's got a real ability to score." -- Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill on rookie Filip Zadina

 

Need to know

Kovalchuk played in his 899th NHL game. He has 862 points (436 goals, 426 assists). … The Red Wings are 3-0-0 against Montreal and 8-30-3 against the rest of the NHL.

 

What's next

Canadiens: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; TSN2, RDS, SNW, NHL.TV)

Red Wings: Host the Ottawa Senators on Friday (7:30 p.m. ET; NHLN, FS-D, TSN5, RDS, NHL.TV)

Video: Nielsen scores twice as Red Wings rally for 4-3 win

View More

The NHL has updated its Privacy Policy effective January 16, 2020. We encourage you to review it carefully.

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.