Red Wings 6, Blackhawks 4
DETROIT (AP)—Steve Yzerman turned back the clock on Saturday night.
Many feel that the 40-year-old Yzerman, will retire after this season—his 23rd in the NHL. The longest-serving captain in league history has nine goals and 20 points in 45 games this season. But he’s been playing much better since the Olympic break.
“I don’t know if he played any better tonight,” Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. “He scored and that gives you energy. The better he gets, the better we are.”
Yzerman didn’t talk to reporters after the game.
“He works every shift even though I think every morning he wakes up his body is sore and aches,” said Chicago’s Martin Lapointe, a former teammate of Yzerman’s. “But he shows up every game, works hard, blocks shots and leads the team. It’s pretty to watch.”
The Red Wings took a 3-2 lead in the first period and built on it in the second.
It was Zetterberg’s 32nd goal of the season and fifth in four games.
Draper made it 5-2 with 9:26 left in the second period by tipping in a pass from Datsyuk.
Yzerman got his second goal with just 7.2 seconds remaining in the period when he put in a rebound off a goal-mouth scramble with the Red Wings on a 5-on-3 power play.
“I expect him to score more and more the rest of the season,” Mowers said.
Chicago coach Trent Yawney expects more from Yzerman after that.
“He’s still one of the best leaders in the game,” Yawney said. “I wouldn’t judge him by what he’s done so far this year in terms of statistics, but I would watch in the playoffs what he does for this team.”
Sharp’s goal came with 6:23 left in the third, and Brown added a short-handed tally with 5:30 remaining.
Barnaby opened the scoring just 1:08 in.
But the Red Wings got goals 1:43 apart from Datsyuk—his 23rd at 6:25—and Yzerman scored at 8:08.
Holmqvist tied it 2-2 with 7:57 remaining in the opening period. Mowers’ goal with 6:32 left restored Detroit’s lead.
After picking up a loose puck in the high slot, Mowers fired a wrist shot past Khabibulin.
“I trailed Hank (Henrik) Zetterberg. I’ve learned if you do that, the puck might come to you,” Mowers said. “Eighty percent of the time, he gets through. Fortunately it came right back on my stick and I was able to get a good shot off.”
Detroit RW Mikael Samuelsson missed his fourth game with a sore wrist. He was injured during the Olympics. … The teams will meet again in Chicago on Sunday. … Newly acquired D Cory Cross wasn’t in the lineup for the Red Wings. He’s expected to make his debut on Sunday. … Barnaby has two goals and two assists in his last three games. … Dean Chelios, the son of Detroit D Chris Chelios, had two assists in his high school’s 4-0 win in the Michigan Division 3 state championship game on Saturday.