DETROIT – Stephen Weiss scored more goals in less than five minutes than he scored in the previous 13 months for the Detroit Red Wings.
Weiss broke a goal drought of more than a year with two as the Red Wings held off the Ottawa Senators to win 4-3 at Joe Louis Arena on Monday.
“I always said it takes a bounce, something to go your way, and it starts snowballing,” said Weiss. “Hockey’s funny that way. I got a bounce and hopefully it keeps going.”
He only played 26 games last season due to sports hernia surgery. Tonight marked his second game of 2014-15, after dealing with groin issues earlier this season, as well as being a healthy scratch.
“The guy’s got 60 points in the league a ton of times. That doesn’t happen by accident. But in your career, when you get hurt and you miss a couple of years, there’s no guarantee you’re getting it back,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “[Weiss] has played four games, three in the American League, and he’s got five goals. Scoring is scoring. Not many guys can do that. We acquired him initially because we thought he could help us score and he spent two years on IR basically. Hopefully he can get his confidence back and get going.”
Gustav Nyquist and Riley Sheahan scored for Detroit. Jimmy Howard stopped 23 shots.
Erik Karlsson and Kyle Turris each had a goal and an assist and Mike Hoffman scored for Ottawa. Craig Anderson made 39 saves.
“They schedule it for 60 minutes and you have to play all three periods,” Senators coach Paul MacLean said. “... I thought we got schooled the last 10 minutes of the first period and the second period on how fast the ice can be at Joe Louis Arena.”
Turris opened the scoring with a 5-on-3 power-play goal 5:19 into the first period. He beat Howard with a one-time slap shot from the top of the left circle, converting a cross-ice pass from Karlsson. It was Turris' fourth goal of the season.
Nyquist's power-play goal with 3:15 left in the first period tied the game 1-1. He scored off Red Wings’ captain Henrik Zetterberg's rebound, for his team-leading 10th goal.
“We took the lead and played pretty sound in the first,” Karlsson said. “But we got a penalty against us and our game went away and we didn't get it back until the third period.”
Detroit scored three times in the second period to take a 4-1 lead.
Sheahan's power-play goal 2:23 into the second broke a 1-1 tie. He put in a long rebound off a shot from Tomas Tatar from the right faceoff circle on the rush. It was Sheahan's fourth goal of the season.
Weiss scored the next two goals.
His first goal since Oct. 14, 2013, made it 3-1 with 6:26 left in the second. He put in a loose puck from in front.
“It felt good. I haven’t scored in this building yet. I thought about that today. Why not go get it and get it over with?,” Weiss said. “A nice little break in front and the puck was just laying there. It felt good.”
His second goal came with 2:08 left in the second, 4:18 later, when he backhanded a shot past Anderson from the bottom of the left circle for his 400th career point.
It was Weiss' first two-goal game since Feb. 26, 2012.
“It felt good to be in the lineup, it was nice to get a couple of goals and get the win but there’s still a lot of work to do,” he said.
Karlsson cut the Red Wings lead to 4-2, 2:43 into the third period with his sixth goal. He beat Howard with a wrist shot from the high slot.
Hoffman got his eighth goal, with 35 seconds remaining.
Howard made a glove save on defenseman Patrick Wiercioch's knuckling shot from the left point just before the final buzzer.
“We said 'lets go out and win the the third period,'” MacLean said. “See if we can come into the third period and create some momentum going into tomorrow night's game and we did that.”
The Senators are back in action against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday. Detroit hosts the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday.