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Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom Gets 1,000th Career Point in Big Red Wings Victory

Evan DrexlerContributor IOctober 16, 2009

10 Nov 2001:  Nicklas Lidstrom #5 of the Detroit Red Wings looks on before a defensive end faceoff during the second period of their game against the Kings at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The Los Angeles Kings went on to win in OT 3-2. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: J. Victor Decolongon/ALLSPORT

For the last decade and a half, Nicklas Lidstrom has been the most consistent defenseman in the NHL. He’s brought home six Norris Trophies, been named to 11 All-Star teams, took home the Conn Smythe in 2002, and even has an Olympic gold medal from 2006.

Tonight, Lidstrom’s assist on what would be the game-winning goal from Henrik Zetterberg put him at 1,000 career points.

To him, it’s probably just another trophy in the case. But he earned a standing ovation from the crowd at Joe Louis Arena, and he responded with a nice curtain call of sorts from the bench.

His individual performance shined bright in Detroit’s 5-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings, but the team as a whole really responded strongly after a brutal 6-2 loss to Buffalo two nights earlier.

Despite letting in a first-period goal and going down one, Jonathan Ericsson put a slap shot past Jonathan Quick to start the second period, and Detroit scored the next two goals (from Tomas Holmstrom and Zetterberg).

Those three consecutive goals put the Red Wings ahead for good despite a Kings goal with about eight minutes remaining in the game.

Kirk Maltby made a terrific individual effort in creating his own goal for the clincher with five minutes left, and Brian Rafalski put home an empty-netter with just seven seconds on the clock.

Chris Osgood might have had his best game of the season, stopping 24 of 26 shots and holding strong after allowing an early goal. The Kings, who had started out to a hot 4-2 this year, are now 0-4-1 in their most recent meetings with Detroit.

Detroit moves to 3-3-0 on the year with 6 points and a firm hold on third place in the Central Division. Chicago, on a four-game winning streak, is still in first, with Columbus in a surprising second.

 

Five More Observations:

  1. Two for the show. In Detroit’s three wins this season, they’ve allowed just two goals each time. That seems to be the number they’ll have to stick to for victories. Their three losses saw four, five, and six goals hit the twine.
  2. Home cooking. The Red Wings’ three victories have also all been in the friendly confines of Joe Louis Arena. The two games in Sweden and a trip to Buffalo ended in defeat.
  3. Abdelkader gets on board. Since replacing the injured Johan Franzen in the lineup, after the Chicago game last week, Justin Abdelkader hadn’t put a point on the board. Thursday night, he assisted on Ericsson’s goal in the second period by winning a faceoff clean.
  4. Saved by the glove. The Kings could have gotten off to an even faster start, but Osgood was able to put a glove on a puck that bounced off the post and into his back, then started moving toward the goal. Quick handiwork by Osgood kept the Kings off the board temporarily.
  5. Holmstrom on fire. The veteran’s goal was his fourth of the season, and he is surprisingly in front of all Red Wings scorers. The tip-in tonight was a perfect example of Holmstrom being the best front-of-net scorer in the NHL. Still not on the board: Pavel Datsyuk.

 

Best of the Wings: Lidstrom. His two assists were huge in the second period, and he broke 1,000 points in his career.

Word of the game: Milestone. For Lidstrom’s 1,000th point.

Next up: Saturday vs. Colorado, 7 p.m.

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