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Osgood, Wings bag first shutout of season

by Derek Gluth / Detroit Red Wings
DETROIT -- Chris Osgood's amazing start to the season continued Wednesday night against the St. Louis Blues. Osgood once again showed why he deserved these extra starts and held the Blues scoreless en route to a 3-0 victory at Joe Louis Arena.

 WingsCast (Post-Game) 

It was Osgood's first shutout since March 1, 2006, in Anaheim -- and the 44th of his career, ranking fifth among active goalies.
"Ozzie's been playing real good for us," Wings coach Mike Babcock said. "He's obviously confident, he's worked on his game a lot, he feels good and with his experience, and the way he feels about his game it gives us a real good one-two combination."
An early mistake by the Blues led to an early lead for the Red Wings. A delay of game penalty 16-seconds into the game led to Henrik Zetterberg's goal on a feed from Tomas Holmstrom across the crease just 22-seconds into the first. It was the first power play goal given up by the Blues in the last 20 chances. Brian Rafalski also picked up assist number 15 this season.

Coming into the game, St. Louis was ranked first the NHL on the penalty kill at 91.2 percent.
Osgood (10-1-0) came up big on a shorthanded breakaway early in the second by Ryan Johnson to keep the Wings up by a goal.
"When it was 1-0 they had a few chances, they had a shorthanded chance," Osgood said. "Then they took a penalty and we converted on the power play because we didn't panic. We didn't start turning the puck over and start poaching and doing some things we did in the past two games."
Mikael Samuelsson gave the Wings some breathing room by scoring off a Dan Cleary rebound, banking the puck off of Eric Brewer's glove and over the glove side of goalie Manny Legace. The goal came at 5:16 into the second, and just after their fifth power play of the game had expired. The goal was Samuelsson's third this season and gave Cleary and Jiri Hudler both their sixth assist on the season.
"It's always fun to score goals," Samuelsson said. "I've been waiting quite a while for this one, and hopefully I get more. It was a little lucky, but if you don't shoot, you don't score."
The teams traded opportunities until 14:13 of the second when Cleary went top -shelf on Legace on a breakaway goal to extend Detroit's lead to three. Nicklas Lidstrom and Kris Draper got the puck to Cleary, who slipped behind the St. Louis defense for his seventh goal of the season, and his second point on the night.

"We need to have that killer instinct," Cleary said. "If we get up one or two, try to get that third, fourth goal, really try to put the foot down and bury teams."
Detroit forward Tomas Kopecky left the game in the second period with a shoulder injury and did not return.
The Wings had 10 power play opportunities and had only three called against in a very disciplined effort against the Blues. Detroit also out shot St. Louis 38-12 while ending the Blues' four-game win streak.
The three goal margin made it a little easier on the Wings who were able to rest some of their starters as they have a quick turnaround between games. They travel to Nashville on Thanksgiving night to play the Predators. Dominik Hasek get the start for Detroit.

"We shut down Datsyuk and (Zetterberg) and Homer and played some other guys some more," Babcock said. "The last little bit we've done a better job of spreading guys out."

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