Thomas Greiss backstops Detroit Red Wings to first win of season, 3-1 over Vancouver

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Thomas Greiss had a good performance in his first start as the Detroit Red Wings hosted the Vancouver Canucks Saturday at Little Caesars Arena, stopping 40 shots en route to a 3-1 victory.

Robby Fabbri scored his first goal of the season; Conor Garland then flattened that lead early in the second period. Filip Zadina followed up with his first goal of the season, scoring on a power play.

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Red Wings goaltender Thomas Greiss stops a Canucks right wing Alex Chiasson shot as Nick Leddy defends during the second period on Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at Little Caesars Arena.
Red Wings goaltender Thomas Greiss stops a Canucks right wing Alex Chiasson shot as Nick Leddy defends during the second period on Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at Little Caesars Arena.

Greiss made a highlight reel save in the second period, stretching to deny Nils Hoglander, who had an open lane when Gustav Lindstrom coughed up the puck to enable the Canucks an odd-man rush.

Zadina went to the dressing room midway through the third period after being elbowed in the head by Garland, who was assessed a penalty for an illegal check to the head. A scrum broke out, and ultimately the Wings did not end with a man advantage. Zadina was back on the bench after a few minutes.

Jack Rathbone’s shot went past Greiss with 2:31 to play, but officials ruled no goal because Nils Hoglander had interfered with Greiss. The Canucks pulled their goalie for the extra attacker when play resumed, and Sam Gagner scored his first goal of the season into an empty net with 58 seconds to go.

Captain's log, part I

Former captain Henrik Zetterberg and his son, Love, were in attendance; Zetterberg used to talk about how nothing can happen in a game for 59 minutes — that all it takes is one shift. The first period was a demonstration of sorts; the Wings spent too much time chasing the puck in their own zone in the first half, but a little past the halfway point Marc Staal fired a shot on net from the right point that Fabbri deflected to make it 1-0.

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Captain's log, part II

Former captain Nicklas Lidstrom was also in attendance. He got to watch a fine performance from rookie defenseman Moritz Seider. Seider ran a power play unit, quarterbacking Zadina, Filip Hronek, Adam Erne and Michael Rasmussen. Early in the second period, Seider had the puck at the blue line and perfectly timed a pass to Zadina, whose one-timer flew behind Canucks goalie Jaroslav Halak. That was Seider’s third assist in two games. Seider, 20, has looked confident and poised handling the puck and already has demonstrated he'll help the Wings produce more offense.

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Red Wings right wing Filip Zadina celebrates his goal against the Canucks during the second period on Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at Little Caesars Arena.
Red Wings right wing Filip Zadina celebrates his goal against the Canucks during the second period on Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at Little Caesars Arena.

Captain's log, part III

Current captain Dylan Larkin served his one-game suspension for roughing Tampa Bay Lightning forward Mathieu Joseph in the opener. Larkin was shaken up when Joseph hit him from behind into the glass, requiring an appointment with medical personnel. Jeff Blashill did not have an update Larkin after Saturday’s morning skate. Larkin suffered a neck injury in April when Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn shoved his stick into Larkin’s neck, leading to Larkin wearing a cervical hard collar for eight weeks.

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Captain's log, part IV

Saturday marked 75 years since Gordie Howe made his NHL debut, on Oct. 16, 1946, at Olympia Stadium. The 18-year-old Howe earned his first goal when he scored in the second period. The Wings tied the Toronto Maple Leafs, 3-3.

Contact Helene St. James at hstjames@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Red Wings get first win of season, 3-1 over Vancouver Canucks