Even though it was Franzen’s first game back from injury, he looked good on the ice and made some big plays for the Detroit Red Wings on both sides of the ice.
On Gustav Nyquist‘s game tying goal in the second period, it was Johan Franzen who jumped into the play and deflected a pass which landed on the stick of Nyquist for the goal.
Johan Franzen noticed that Shore was handcuffed by Jovanovski’s pass and could only hope to clear the puck by flipping it on his back-hand so Franzen pressured him to make it more difficult,which caused a turnover in the Panthers’ zone.
But Franzen was not only a force on offense, he was the reason that the Panthers were not able to go up by two in the first period. This kept the Red Wings in the game, which could have slipped away from the Wings sooner than the third period.
He recognized the play and put his stick right into the passing lane, which is something a lot of players might not recognize in their first game back from injury.
The Wings might be disappointed that he was only able to get one shot on net the entire game, but he was able to win 73% of his face-offs, second only to Daniel Cleary who won both his face-offs.
At the end of the day, Johan Franzen ended up being a minus one, but he had a solid first game back and will be a guy the Wings will look at to generate offense moving forward.