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Hawks fall apart after Detroit kills power play
By Tim Sassone | Daily Herald Staff

Detroit Red Wings' Johan Franzen (93) scores a goal against Chicago Blackhawks goalie Cristobal Huet (39) on a rebound in the second period of an NHL hockey game in Detroit, Thursday.


Associated Press

Blackhawks goalie Cristobal Huet, of France, stops a shot as Detroit Red Wings' Dan Cleary (11) and Todd Bertuzzi (44) look on during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Detroit.


Associated Press

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Published: 10/8/2009 10:19 PM | Updated: 10/8/2009 10:22 PM

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DETROIT - Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville knew the importance of the 5-on-3 power play his team got early in the second period.

That's why Quenneville used his timeout during the two-man advantage that lasted 1:53 and came with the Hawks leading 1-0.

But the Hawks failed miserably, denied down low by the Red Wings and with point men Brent Seabrook and Cam Barker unable to get pucks through to the net.

The Hawks got just 1 shot during the two-man advantage and it all came back to bite them when Detroit scored the next 3 goals in the second period and went on to win 3-2 at Joe Louis Arena.

"We've got to find a way to put one in there," Hawks winger Patrick Sharp said. "It's a tough way to lose a couple points on the road against a tough team. We felt we played a pretty strong game overall."

Quenneville didn't have a problem with how the Hawks executed during the 5-on-3.

"We still did some good things on it. We were shooting and firing away on it," Quenneville said. "We've got some guys who can pound it. I didn't mind the way we were executing, I just didn't like the result."

The end result was yet another loss to the Red Wings, the Hawks' ninth in the last 12 games over the past two seasons including the Western Conference finals.

And the script was familiar with the Hawks playing well, but the Red Wings finding a way to come out on top.

"We've seen that before out of the Red Wings," Sharp said. "I felt like we gave a good effort, but they found a way to win. That was a good opportunity to take down a great team and we let one slip away."

The Red Wings connected twice on their power play to win for the first time after opening the season with a pair of losses to St. Louis.

"They capitalized on their chances and they did it to us all of last year as well," defenseman Brian Campbell said. "Slowly learning, I guess."

The Hawks outshot the Wings 34-23, but Detroit goalie Chris Osgood outplayed Cristobal Huet.

"That was reminiscent, be it the three games we played here in the playoffs, and a lot of the games we had against them last year where we came out on the short end of it," Quenneville said. "We had puck possession time, we had quality chances, we had zone time. The only place we got beat tonight was on the board, which counts."

Huet played well early but couldn't carry that sharpness into the second period.

Nicklas Lidstrom's tying goal on a power play at 10:36 of the second was a fluke. Huet had no chance when Lidstrom's centering pass went in off the skate of John Madden.

But Kris Draper beat Huet to the short side from inside the right circle at 16:15 for a 2-1 Detroit lead.

Johan Franzen's power-play tap-in at 17:49 came after a shot by Pavel Datsyuk through a Tomas Holmstrom screen squirted through Huet's pads and sat in the crease.

"He was fine," Quenneville said of Huet. "They had a fortunate bounce on that first one and all of a sudden got a little excitement off that."