for this game

Datsyuk leads late comeback as Red Wings top Blue Jackets

Dec 29, 2006 - 6:33 AM
COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- The Columbus Blue Jackets gave their fans something to cheer about early in the third period. Pavel Datsyuk and Daniel Cleary silenced them late in the session.

Datsyuk scored two of his team's four goals in the final 10 minutes of the third and Cleary completed his first career hat trick with the game-winner as the Detroit Red Wings staged a late comeback to post a 7-4 victory over the Blue Jackets.

Meeting Columbus for the third time in 11 days, Detroit stormed out to a 3-0 lead on a pair of first-period goals by Cleary and a tally by Henrik Zetterberg midway through the second.

"I thought the first half of the game, Detroit didn't give us very much at all," Columbus coach Ken Hitchcock said. "They played about the best I've ever seen them play in the first 30 minutes."

But the Red Wings were unable to keep hold of the seemingly comfortable advantage as the Blue Jackets rallied for four straight goals, including power-play tallies two minutes apart early in the third by Dan Fritsche and defenseman Adam Foote.

"It was obviously going wrong," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "Things were going real bad. It would have been easy for us to fold."

Datsyuk - who also had an assist - took over from there, however, forging a 4-4 tie with 8:36 to go and adding a fluke goal with 1:45 remaining to stake Detroit to a two-goal lead. Cleary, who set a career high with his first of the contest, had put the Red Wings ahead for good at 14:41, completing his first three-goal performance in 443 career games with a man-advantage tally.

"I don't know what to say," Cleary said of his first hat trick. "Robert Lang has had a huge impact on me. He keeps getting me the puck all the time. If you look at all my goals, he is in on pretty much all of them. Playing with him has been a great opportunity for me."

"It's a great story because it's great when good things happen to good people," Babcock said. "Dan Cleary has been battling and battling and battling since he got to the NHL to find his place. Now, he is playing with a real good player in Robert Lang and he just keeps doing good things. Look around the NHL. How many guys have 17 goals?"

Lang returned the praise given to him by Cleary, whose previous career high of 14 goals came in 2000-01 while with Edmonton.

"It's one thing to set him up, but he is putting them away," Lang said. "He has been getting dirty goals, tip-ins. You got to get those, you have to go there. He's not afraid to go there. On the power play, he is the front-of-the-net guy, so the puck gets bounced around a bit, and that's his payoff.

"I'm happy for him. He works hard and it's all coming together for him."

Lang registered three assists, defenseman Brett Lebda set up a pair of tallies and Zetterberg and blue-liner Danny Markov each had a goal and an assist for the Red Wings, who have won six of their last eight.

"No lead is safe anymore because you can get three power plays in a row," Lang said. "If your power play clicks, right there you have three goals. Luckily for us, we just came back, made a couple good plays and pushed through when we had to."

David Vyborny scored his 100th career goal and added an assist for Columbus, which had its three-game home winning streak snapped and fell to 3-9-5 all-time against Detroit at Nationwide Arena.

"I don't think we had many players that played that well tonight," Hitchcock said. "We got rallied by the same two or three guys tonight. Once those guys rally, we had people play better, but to beat Detroit, you have got to have everyone on board. We had too many guys not competing at the level needed to compete to beat this team."

"We work hard to come back from a deficit and we have to find a way to win the game," Foote said. "It's a lesson we don't want to have to learn again the rest of the year. We have to make better decisions when the game gets tough."

Cleary opened the scoring with his fifth goal in four games against Columbus this season, banging in a rebound from the doorstep at 4:21 of the first period. Jiri Hudler failed to get off a shot on a breakaway just over two minutes later, but Cleary still gave Detroit a 2-0 lead with four minutes to go in the session, beating goaltender Fredrik Norrena with a shot from the hash marks.

"I've got a lot of goals against Columbus," Cleary said. "It's just one of those things. I have no answer."

Zetterberg made it 3-0 at 8:45 of the second before the Blue Jackets began their uprising. Defenseman Ron Hainsey got things started with 7:28 to go in the period with a snap shot from a tough angle in the left faceoff circle, and Vyborny drew Columbus within a goal with a highlight-reel effort just 88 seconds afterward.

As four-time Norris Trophy winner Nicklas Lidstrom attempted to carry the puck out of his own zone, Vyborny lifted his stick from behind in the left circle to make a steal. After walking to the doorstep, the Czech drifted to the right and put a shot just under the crossbar for his 10th of the season.

"The 100th goal is good for me, but it's not good for the team," Vyborny said. "The 100th goal is a good milestone for me and I just try to play my game."

Fritsche capitalized on another turnover by Detroit during a power play to tie the game at 3:15 of the third and Foote put Columbus ahead with a slap shot from above the slot 2:02 later.

"I give credit to them for sticking with it and keep working," Cleary said. "On our side of it, I think we got a little careless with the puck. We took some penalties, and when you give them chances to score, they capitalized."

Datsyuk stopped the Blue Jackets' momentum with a brilliant individual effort, avoiding a defender at the right point, cutting across the top of the slot and skating down the left side before beating Norrena from the bottom of the faceoff circle.

Cleary deflected a shot by Lang with 5:19 to go for a 5-4 lead and, from the right corner, Datsyuk banked the puck off Norrena and into the net to create a two-goal bulge.

"I saw (Tomas) Holmstrom for a one-timer," Datsyuk said. "I went to take (the puck) back behind. I saw the goalie there, he stayed a little bit in front of the net. I tried to flip it out to the front and see what happens. It happened."

"I think we had gas in our tank, but we just made some bad mistakes, and they are just too good a team to do those," Norrena said. "They took advantage of them."

Markov sealed the win with an empty-netter.

"We made a couple of mistakes," Vyborny said. "They have a good team, they have a lot of experience and they showed that at the end of the game."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 1 4 7
    COLUMBUS 0 2 2 4 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 15 (ROBERT LANG, DANNY MARKOV) 4:21
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 16 (ROBERT LANG, BRETT LEBDA) 16:00
    2ND PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 15 (BRETT LEBDA, PAVEL DATSYUK) 8:45
    COB - RON HAINSEY 4 (ANDERS ERIKSSO

    Dec 28 9:27 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 7
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: DET - (EN) DANNY MARKOV 2 (UNASSISTED) 18:37

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 9:25 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 6
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: DET - PAVEL DATSYUK 9 (TOMAS HOLMSTROM, HENRIK ZETTERBERG)
    18:15

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 9:24 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 5
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: DET - (PP) ROBERT LANG 11 (NIKLAS KRONVALL, JOHAN FRANZEN)
    14:41

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 9:17 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 4
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: DET - PAVEL DATSYUK 8 (JASON WILLIAMS) 11:24

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 9:09 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 4
    3RD PRD: COB - (PP) ADAM FOOTE 2 (SERGEI FEDOROV, DAVID VYBORNY) 5:17

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 8:58 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 3
    3RD PRD: COB - (PP) DAN FRITSCHE 7 (UNASSISTED) 3:15

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 8:54 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 1 3
    COLUMBUS 0 2 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 15 (ROBERT LANG, DANNY MARKOV) 4:21
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 16 (ROBERT LANG, BRETT LEBDA) 16:00
    2ND PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 15 (BRETT LEBDA, PAVEL DATSYUK) 8:45
    COB - RON HAINSEY 4 (A

    Dec 28 8:29 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 2
    2ND PRD: COB - DAVID VYBORNY 10 (UNASSISTED) 14:00

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 8:23 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 1
    2ND PRD: COB - RON HAINSEY 4 (ANDERS ERIKSSON, JASON CHIMERA) 12:32

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 8:17 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 0
    2ND PRD: DET - HENRIK ZETTERBERG 15 (BRETT LEBDA, PAVEL DATSYUK) 8:45

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 8:12 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 2
    COLUMBUS 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 15 (ROBERT LANG, DANNY MARKOV) 4:21
    DET - DANIEL CLEARY 16 (ROBERT LANG, BRETT LEBDA) 16:00
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DET 12 12
    CO

    Dec 28 7:41 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 2
    COLUMBUS 0
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 16 (ROBERT LANG, BRETT LEBDA) 16:00

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 7:35 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 1
    COLUMBUS 0
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 15 (ROBERT LANG, DANNY MARKOV) 4:21

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsDec 28 7:15 PM