The skinny: Detroit bounced back from a Winter Classic loss with a victory over the Stars in Dallas on Saturday night, and the 5-1 win was the Wings’ 19th in 43 games this season. Henrik Zetterberg opened and concluded the scoring, while Joakim Andersson, Drew Miller, and Tomas Tatar scored in between. Jimmy Howard made 44 saves in arguably his best performance of the season, contributing to the Wings’ East-leading 13th road victory. The Red Wings moved up to fourth in the Atlantic and
Three stars: 3. Henrik Zetterberg. The captain scored twice in the victory; the goals were his 13th and 14th respectively.
2. Tomas Tatar. Tatar’s eighth goal of the season came in the second period, and he scored it in spectacular fashion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LiMUFOARm2c
1. Jimmy Howard. The Olympian put forth a sterling effort on Saturday, stopping 44 shots, including 19 in the first period.
Five things: 1. Stats be damned. The Wings were outshot 45-27, took three more penalties than the Stars, and lost the faceoff battle 37-22. Yet they won 5-1. Chance conversion was key; their three first-period goals on 13 shots were enough to chase Dallas netminder Dan Ellis and ignite the rout.
2. Playing (and winning) shorthanded. Pavel Datsyuk (lower body) and Danny DeKeyser (groin) sat this one out, along with previously-injured Wings Jonathan Ericsson (ribs), Johan Franzen (concussion), Darren Helm (groin), and Stephen Weiss (sports hernia). No matter, as the Wings potted five and bent but did not break defensively. Go figure.
3. Penalty kill. The Stars went 0-for-7 on the power play, snapping a three-game run with at least one power play goal for them.
4. Spartans buzzing. Drew Miller scored his fifth goal of the year on Saturday, with his tally assisted by Justin Abdelkader, who misfired on a penalty shot earlier in the game. The former Spartans have had a good start to the new year; Abdelkader scored on Wednesday, and their school’s football team won the Rose Bowl later that day. Also, the MSU men’s basketball team is ranked fifth in the nation.
5. “Assisted by…Cleary?” Yes, Dan Cleary got a point in this game, assisting on the Wings’ fifth goal. Kyle Quincey also tallied a helper over his 23 minutes of time; he assisted on Joakim Andersson’s goal, Detroit’s second.
What’s next? The Wings are off until Thursday, when they visit San Jose.