When the Detroit Red Wings bested the Dallas Stars on April 27th, they clinched the 7th seed in the Western Conference and a first round series against the Anaheim Ducks. This marks the sixth time the Ducks and Red Wings have been matched up against each other in the playoffs.
During the regular season, the Red Wings and Ducks played each other three times, twice in Anaheim and once in Detroit. The Red Wings ended up winning the regular season series 2-1.
Detroit came back in game two against Anaheim. Detroit battled back from a 1-0 deficit to beat the Duck 5-1. Justin Abdelkader tallied 4 points, 3 of which were goals, while Jimmy Howard was back in his true form and dominated between the pipes.
The big story from this game is the fact that Booby Ryan did not receive an instigator penalty, despite chasing Brendan Smith from the corner to center ice in order to cross-check him and then back into the Wings zone.
Detroit took it to the Duck in the first period to go up two goals, but the rest of the game was firmly in control of the Ducks. Thankfully the Wings managed to keep hold of the lead and won 2-1.
Previous Playoff Series
The Red Wings and Ducks have met five times in the Stanley Cup playoffs and the Red Wings have won three of them.
The Wings first met the Ducks when they were still The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim back in 1997. The Wings swept them in the Conference Semi-finals and went on to their first of the back to back Stanley Cups.
They met again in the 1999 quarter-finals, the Wings again swept them before being knocked out by Colorado in the next round.
The tide turned in 2003 though as the Ducks swept the Red Wings in the First Round.
In 2007 it seemed the tide would once again change, but the Ducks and J.S. Giguere once again dispatched the Wings in the Conference Finals, 4 games to 2.
The teams met again in 2009 in the Conference Semi-finals, Detroit managed to squeak past the Ducks in seven games, but eventually lost in the Finals to the Penguins.
Only time will tell what will happen in the sixth playoff meeting between the teams, but it all kicks off on April 30th in Anaheim. Let’s Go Red Wings!