Originally posted on The Detroit Sports Site  |  Last updated 2/5/13
The Detroit Red Wings on again off again start to the 2013 season has taken two more steps backwards. The bottom dwelling Calgary Flames used two power play goals and a goal in every period to down the Red Wings, sending them to their second straight loss. Like he has so many times in 2013, Jordin Tootoo got things starred with the fisticuffs. A fight with Steve Begin ignited things, but for the wrong side. Jarome Iginla jammed a net mouth scramble past Jimmy Howard for the early 1-0 lead. The Flames then drew two penalties and scored on their power play, as Curtis Glencross tapped home an easy pass for a two goal advantage. The Red Wings managed spurts of pressure on Mikka Kiprusoff, but couldn’t break through. A late power play provided a few chances, but the Red Wings still went into the locker room down by a pair. Right off the hop, Pavel Datsyuk started the second period in ominous fashion by hitting the crossbar, helping the Red Wings’ scoring woes continue. They killed off a Calgary power play, but continued to whiff on chances around the net, narrowly missing shots which would have gotten them back in the game. Dennis Wideman took a tough penalty, and the Red Wings made him pay. Henrik Zetterberg’s nifty pass found Johan Franzen, who buried a backhander, cutting the Flames’ lead to 2-1. Howard then stopped a penalty shot by Iginla, preserving momentum. Late in the period, however, Wideman atoned for his mistake, blasting a shot past Howard to regain Calgary’s two goal lead by the second intermission. Unexpectedly, young Leland Irving was pressed into duty, taking over for Kiprusoff who departed with a lower body injury. The Red Wings didn’t do much damage on the young net minder, however. Despite a quick power play, Irving stood tall as Detroit continued to miss the net by mere inches. Mark Giordano iced the game with another power play blast from the point, beating Howard for Calgary’s 4-1 spread. Quickly thereafter, the horn sounded, ending the sorry night for the Detroiters. Red Wings’ Wheel: None. It was an ugly effort from everyone tonight, offense, defense and goaltender included. More pathetic games like this and the Red Wings will not be coming close to making the playoffs. Red Wings’ Heel: Jimmy Howard. With the defense as dinged up as it has been and goals at a premium, Howard has to elevate his game and show he can be a stopper. Tonight he was terrible, allowing too many goals he should have stopped. These type of efforts aren’t good enough for the supposed number one man in Detroit’s net. Key Play Of The Game: Dennis Wideman’s goal late in the second period. Any shred of momentum the Red Wings may have had was lost with that big goal. The Flames went into the locker room with a 3-1 lead to protect in the third period instead of 2-1. Mentally, that was huge for the fragile Flames and the offensively challenged Red Wings, who were unable to break through in the third with the game a bit more out of hand. Beyond The Bench: That’s two horrible losses in a row for the Red Wings after things seemed to take a turn for the better against St. Louis. In order to keep pace, Detroit needs to win games at home and games against traditionally weaker competition. What’s Next: On the heels of this loss, Detroit departs for St. Louis on Thursday night, a place they were blitzed 6-0 in their last visit. Yuck. The puck drops at 8 p.m. Max DeMara is a senior editor at The Detroit Sports Site. You can find him on Twitter @SportsGuyTheMax
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