The Red Wings went into last night’s game against the Islanders with the hope they could slug out a victory. Neither of these teams are offensive juggernauts, so this matchup was anticipated to be a low scoring affair. That was not the case, as the Red Wings lost in an 8-2 decision.

The club outshot the Islanders 36-26, but brutal goaltending decided the game within the first 20 minutes. New York scored four first period goals and you could sense the game was over.

Thoughts and Highlights

  • A lack of powerplays kept the game at 5-on-5 for most of the game. Detroit only went on the man-advantage twice, a much lower total than the six they saw back on Dec. 2 against the Isles.
  • Jimmy Howard allowed three goals on seven shots and was quickly yanked in the third period. His night didn’t even last eight minutes.
  • Calvin Pickard came in for Howard in relief and did all he could. Unexpectedly playing for over 50 minutes, he allowed five goals on 17 shots. Not great by any stretch of the imagination, but he certainly held up longer than where Howard was going.
  • Detroit’s first goal came from a point shot from Filip Hronek. It was a low percentage shot, but still managed to find twine.

  • That is goal No. 9 on the season for Hronek. Assists on the goal came from Robby Fabbri and Dylan Larkin.
  • By the conclusion of the game, Hronek played over 23 minutes. He continues to dominate ice time on the team, and especially on the back-end. The next closest defender in terms of TOI from the game was Mike Green at 19:11 minutes.
  • Making it 8-2 in the final ten minutes, Givani Smith redirected the puck for his first career NHL goal. The closest thing to a feel good moment on the night for the Red Wings.

  • Unfortunately for Smith, due to the score, celebrating the goal wouldn’t have been overly appropriate. Hopefully he’ll get that opportunity next time.

Gif of the Game

This game was over in the first period.

Motor City MVP

Givani Smith

To go along with his first career goal, Smith set a new career high in ice time with 13:10 minutes. He’s earning the trust of head coach Jeff Blashill more and more every game. Over the last three games his ice time has increased. That’s a good sign for the now NHL-hopeful. Overall, Smith has had a strong year in terms of development, showing much more promise than he did from a year ago. If/when he returns to Grand Rapids, he’ll have some new found confidence for how well he’s played in the big leagues.