Alex Chiasson makes it interesting but the Red Wings fall in Nashville

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports /

The Detroit Red Wings were in the Music City Tuesday night to square off against the Predators following their impressive 5-3 victory at home against the mighty Boston Bruins.

Head coach Derek Lalonde’s group played exceptionally well this past weekend during Detroit’s home-and-home series with the league’s top team. Detroit dropped the first game of two in a row with Boston 3-2. Still, it would have been much worse if not for the backup goaltender Magnus Hellberg. Hellberg was under siege most of the afternoon and forced to make 35 saves. Detroit got the best of Boston Sunday behind a three-point effort (1 G, 2A) from captain Dylan Larkin and 30 saves from Ville Husso.

The Predators entered the night having gone 7-2-1 over their last ten games and just six points behind the Winnipeg Jets for the final Wild Card position in the Western Conference. Like the Detroit Red Wings, the Predators became sellers ahead of the NHL trade deadline, moving on from veteran defenseman Mattias Ekholm, Mikael Granlund, Nino Niederreiter, and Tanner Jeannot.

The music stopped for the Detroit Red Wings as they fell 2-1 to the Nashville Predators.

There was not much of anything to report in the first period of Tuesday night’s game. Dominik Kubalik saw an excellent scoring chance in the frame as he ripped a one-timer from the left wing circle off a feed from Andrew Copp that Juuse Saros denied. Cody Glass got a nice opportunity early on in the first period and was robbed by Husso as Detroit’s talented goaltender came out past the top of his crease to challenge the shot. The shots finished 10-5 in favor of the Red Wings.

The officiating both ways was suspect, to say the least, in this one. There were a lot of ticky-tack penalties, especially during the first period. Both power plays were difficult to watch, which also hampered the pace of play.

The Red Wings were sloppy in their own zone. The Predators broke through first at the 10:58 mark of the second period, thanks to Kiefer Sherwood. Jonatan Berggren needed to stay with Sherwood as he headed toward the net to support Detroit’s defense; instead, Sherwood found himself alone in front and deposited a beautiful pass from Tomasino past Husso.

The Detroit Red Wings held the slight edge in shots 11-8 in the second period and took a 21-13 overall total to the locker room.

Nashville struck again, this time early on in the third period, to make it 2-0 at the 2:22 mark of the frame. Thomas Novak scored his 13th of the season after the Predators successfully cycled the puck on the half boards. Sherwood got the puck back to Cal Foote, who ripped a point shot toward Detroit’s goal, and it was redirected past Husso by Novak.

Detroit wouldn’t go away quietly. Alex Chiasson extended his point streak to four games when he scored on the power play with just over two minutes left in the third period. Lucas Raymond held the puck in on the wall and shoveled it down by the circle to Andrew Copp. Copp sent a firm pass toward Chiasson, who was waiting to the right of Saros. Chiasson redirected the hard pass that hit Saros and bounced back off a Nashville defender and then off the toe of Chiasson, who had since lost his balance and into the net. It’s Chiasson’s third goal of the season and fifth point over six games since joining the Detroit Red Wings following the deadline.

Detroit finished the evening 1-4 on the power play and 5 for 5 on the penalty kill. For the most part, Nashville did a tremendous job keeping the Red Wings to the outside, limiting their offensive zone chances, and they also did a solid job blocking shots in front of Saros. The Red Wings managed to outshoot Nashville 29-16 overall and 8-3 in the third period but didn’t generate many scoring chances and didn’t see many, if at all any, grade-A opportunities. The Red Wings were only 41% in the faceoff circle.

Next. Alex Chiasson is playing his way toward an extension. dark

Next on the docket for the Detroit Red Wings is a home matchup with the Colorado Avalanche this Saturday. The puck is set to drop at 1 pm Est.