for this game

Cleary, Schneider lift Red Wings over Wild

Dec 23, 2006 - 4:43 AM DETROIT (Ticker) -- The Minnesota Wild will need to keep a closer eye on Dan Cleary in the next few days.

Cleary snapped a second-period tie and Mathieu Schneider extended his points streak to a league-high 12 consecutive games as the Detroit Red Wings posted a 3-1 victory over the Wild.

Playing the first of three meetings against the Wild in a six-day stretch, Detroit won for the fourth time in five contests and defeated Minnesota for the second time in as many encounters this season.

"It was a good win for our team," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "I thought we got started real good, but then we backed off after scoring first. But we weren't very good tonight in the end. It was almost like after we scored, we thought it was going to be another easy night."

After scoring twice in Wednesday's victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets, Cleary netted a shorthanded goal midway through the second period to break a 1-1 tie.

"Cleary has been fantastic," Babcock said. "He has 14 goals. He had three last year. He (has) been excellent."

Minnesota goaltender Manny Fernandez misfired a clearing attempt and Johan Franzen grabbed the loose puck behind the net. He quickly fed Cleary, who fired a shot from the doorstep inside the right goalpost to tie a career high with his 14th goal.

"If (Franzen) got the puck to me, I knew the shot had to be quick," Cleary said. "Get it up and glove side. Johan did all the work. ... I'm just trying to help out as much as I can."

"They're a team if you turn it over and make a bad play like that, they'll be all over you," Fernandez said. "That set the tone. Right there it seemed like it took our wind right out and changed the momentum of the game."

Captain Nicklas Lidstrom widened the margin with 1:47 left in the middle session with his ninth tally of the season and 198th of his career, a slap shot from the left faceoff circle that got past Fernandez's left pad.

Schneider was credited with an assist on Lidstrom's goal, giving him points in 12 straight contests. It is the longest streak by a defenseman since Brian Leetch of the New York Rangers had a 14-game run in the 1996-1997 campaign.

"It's nice when it comes, but that's the furthest thing from my mind," Schneider said. "That's my job out there, to contribute offensively. I'm just happy contributing."

Henrik Zetterberg opened the scoring for Detroit at the four-minute mark of the first period with a wraparound shot between Fernandez's pads for his 13th tally.

Minnesota took advantage of a lucky break with 5:10 left in the opening session as Stephane Veilleux's shot from the left point deflected off defenseman Chris Chelios' skate in the left faceoff circle and bounced past netminder Dominik Hasek.

A six-time Vezina Trophy winner, Hasek made 34 saves to lower his goals-against average to 1.85 and raise his career record against the Wild to 6-0-2.

"You don't want to lose before Christmas," Hasek said. "You want the few days off to be nice and it feels better after winning a game. I was very, very busy the whole game. They kept coming and coming. I just had to stay sharp until the very end."

"He seems to be getting better as we go along here," Schneider said. "He looks great. He's making key saves at key times. He's been a world-class goalie since he's been in the league. The key for him is stay fresh and stay healthy ... so we can ride him into the playoffs."

Fernandez stopped 22 shots and fell to 13-12-10 for Minnesota, which is winless in its last eight road contests.

"It's a tough building to play in," Fernandez said. "I'm pretty surprised we got an awesome game. We were forechecking and keeping pressure on them. We got tons of changes. We did everything we had to (do) to win the game."

"There's no doubt we (are) satisfied with the way we're playing," Wild coach Jacques Lemaire said. "Offensively, we could have gotten a little more from our top players. Defensively, our goalie could have been better. You look at all that, it's not a bad game for us."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 0 1
    DETROIT 1 2 0 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 13 (NIKLAS KRONVALL, TOMAS
    HOLMSTROM) 4:00
    MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 5 (PIERRE-MARC BOUCHARD, MARTIN
    SKOULA) 14:50
    2ND PRD: DET - (SH) DANIEL CLEARY 14 (JOHAN FRANZEN) 9:12
    DET - NICKLAS LIDSTR

    Dec 22 9:54 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 1
    DETROIT 1 2 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 13 (NIKLAS KRONVALL, TOMAS
    HOLMSTROM) 4:00
    MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 5 (PIERRE-MARC BOUCHARD, MARTIN
    SKOULA) 14:50
    2ND PRD: DET - (SH) DANIEL CLEARY 14 (JOHAN FRANZEN) 9:12
    DET - N

    Dec 22 9:05 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    DETROIT 3
    2ND PRD: DET - NICKLAS LIDSTROM 9 (KRIS DRAPER) 18:13

    Wild vs. Red WingsDec 22 9:01 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    DETROIT 2
    2ND PRD: DET - (SH) DANIEL CLEARY 14 (JOHAN FRANZEN) 9:12

    Wild vs. Red WingsDec 22 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 1
    DETROIT 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 13 (NIKLAS KRONVALL, TOMAS
    HOLMSTROM) 4:00
    MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 5 (PIERRE-MARC BOUCHARD, MARTIN
    SKOULA) 14:50
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    M

    Dec 22 8:15 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    DETROIT 1
    1ST PRD: MIN - STEPHANE VEILLEUX 5 (PIERRE-MARC BOUCHARD, MARTIN
    SKOULA) 14:50

    Wild vs. Red WingsDec 22 8:08 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 0
    DETROIT 1
    1ST PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 13 (NIKLAS KRONVALL, TOMAS HOLMSTROM)
    4:00

    Wild vs. Red WingsDec 22 7:46 PM