A battle to the limit ended with a victory for the New Jersey Devils on a Friday night. Kyle Palmieri scored the game winner late in overtime to win 3-2 over the Detroit Red Wings at the Prudential Center.
The Red Wings headed east to take on the Devils in what was the first of three games scheduled against them. Thursday night’s victory over the Canadiens ended a seven game losing streak to Montreal while they continued their points streak to 12 games. Detroit came into New Jersey with little rest to get on the ice at 100 percent.
It would have never been apparent as the Red Wings were running well taking the game to goaltender Cory Schneider. After they accomplished to take their scoring chances, the Devils went to work on offense where they nearly got one at the Detroit net but netminder Jimmy Howard who earned the start laid out to stop the puck.
They began to conduct the game against Detroit who tried to stay close on possession and time with the puck. After a majority of time going off the clock and 15 shots being taken by the teams, the Red Wings earned their first man advantage hoping that their power play goal from last night would help produce more. It didn’t come on their first chance and cost them in a different way as they were caught trying to pass the puck putting the Devils on the power play before the period came to an end.
Both teams took ten shots on net with Detroit doing well on the faceoff winning 11 of 16. With that and five blocked shots on New Jersey, their defense was up to par to matching the Devils.
Detroit spent the opening minutes of the second preventing the Devils from scoring on their power play roll over. Though they managed to kill it off, it didn’t do much to slow New Jersey down as they took a 7-3 lead on shots to the net through eight minutes of play. The Devils slipped up to put the Red Wings into their second power play where a perfect setup helped them take the lead.
Off the faceoff, Detroit got the puck out to wider parts of the ice where the chance to score was possible. Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg got the puck flying into traffic where teammate Gustav Nyquist got a tap on it from his stick. It went into the net very quickly for game officials to halt play and review it. It was confirmed by Eric Furlatt to give Nyquist his 11th of the season and Detroit’s 16th game where they led first.
They got another opportunity six minutes where a shorthanded try from Michael Cammalleri was stopped by Howard who did the splits to shut down the five hole. Detroit responded by gaining possession of the puck where marksman shot from Tomas Tatar on net gave Detroit a 2-0 lead with four minutes left in the period. Detroit kept New Jersey scoreless through forty minutes as they took 16 shots to the net with no solution.
By the first three minutes of the third period, the Devils struck big with a progressive show of force. Second year defenseman Damon Severson scored on a 50 foot shot sending the puck top shelf for his first on the year. It was the key to bringing life to the Devils attempts on scoring chances that put a target on Howard’s front side. The Detroit goaltender made some big saves to keep them from evening it up while his offense charged on Schneider with their top lines trying to regain their two-goal margin. Their attempts went on for a lengthy period with the whistle not being blown. It had the game sliding towards a quick finish with the Red Wings hoping to hold their stance on the scoreboard.
Unfortunately the mission was cut short as the Devils earned a power play due to Zetterberg’s second penalty on the night. With just 20 seconds left on the power play, Palmieri sent a shot that off of Sergey Kalinin and into the net for his third of the season. Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill challenged the play due to a high stick on Howard thereby interfering with the goaltender.
After two minutes of review from the league’s control room in Toronto it was made clear that the Devils goal was clean and would stand to tie the game. There was 5:20 left on the clock and time for the Red Wings to prevent any further time on ice. They had to deal with New Jersey’s hot shooting on net who were hungry to gain the lead. Though they didn’t get the game winner in regulation, it put the Red Wings into an all too familiar situation playing their tenth of the last 14 games playing 3 on 3 hockey.
Four minutes of intense play occurred with the Devils putting two forwards on the ice instead of the usual pair of defenseman. The fight with New Jersey was high as they fought for the puck near the boards and outside of their zone. Lee Stempniak made their effort known as he got hold of the puck to slide it across the ice for Palmieri.
The 24 year old got the edge on Detroit shooting the puck beating Howard in the process to win the game with 39 seconds left. It was 13th of the season and one that ended the Red Wings winning streak but not enough to break their points streak.
For a majority of the game, it was a battle between the goaltenders with Schneider taking the win for his 13th victory. He made 27 saves on 29 shots for a .931 save percentage. Howard, though on the wrong side of the game made 35 saves in his fourth loss so far. With a tremendous showing for Detroit, its likely that he’ll get plenty more opportunities to play. They get the weekend to brush off the loss before playing back at the Joe to play against the Buffalo Sabres Monday.