Red Wings D Steals the Show in Games 1 and 2

The Red Wings have to be feeling pretty confident after completely shutting down the upstart Penguins over the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals. Chris Osgood has been brilliant in both games, stopping all 41 shots that the Penguins have thrown at him.

The interesting aspect of the Red Wings’ success is where they are getting their production from. Mikael Samuelsson, usually a defensive forward, scored twice in Game 1. Defenseman Brad Stuart netted Detroit’s first strike in Game 2, while Valtteri Filppula scored in the 3rd period. Zetterberg had a meaningless goal in Game 1, and has only one other point thus far. Pavel Datsyuk has been held without any points.

The contribution of the Wings’ point leaders has come more from their defensive lockdown of Sidney Crosby and Marian Hossa. The rest of the Wings have been outstanding defensively as well. In Game 2, Pittsburgh was already down 2-0 before they even recorded their first shot.

If the Red Wings continue to play defense like they have in the first two games, the Stanley Cup will be headed back to Hockeytown very shortly. Detroit’s entire roster has clearly bought into the idea that “offense makes headlines, but defense wins championships.”

Notes: Johan Franzen took regular shifts in Game 2, playing for the first time in six games. 30 of the last 31 teams to win the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals have gone on to win the series.

Len robinson
Sports Pundit member

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