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Red Wings take lead in Presidents' Trophy race

Apr 1, 2007 - 10:39 PM
COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- Tomas Holmstrom helped to put the Detroit Red Wings in a familiar position.

The Swedish left wing scored a pair of goals as the Red Wings took the lead in the Presidents' Trophy race with a 4-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Detroit (48-19-12) moved one point ahead of idle Buffalo (50-21-7) for the NHL's best record, although the Sabres have one game in hand.

The Red Wings are bidding to become the first team since the 1976-78 Montreal Canadiens to win the Presidents' Trophy three consecutive seasons.

"We have a good chance to get it (the Presidents' Trophy)," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said.

The schedule is favorable the rest of the way. Detroit will host the Blue Jackets (32-40-7) again on Tuesday before closing the regular season with a home-and-home series against Chicago (28-40-9).

The Red Wings are also closing in on their sixth straight division title. They lead Nashville (49-23-7) by three points in the Central Division. Anaheim (47-20-12) is second in the Western Conference, two points behind Detroit.

"They are really deep up front and it wears on you," Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock said of the Red Wings. "They have a fourth line that is like the other team's second line, so they are very deep up front and can dominate the game that way."

After a scoreless first period, the Red Wings erupted for three second-period goals.

Red Wings defenseman Brett Lebda, who missed the last three games with a concussion, snapped a shot from the right point past goaltender Fredrik Norrena 1:57 into the period. It came just 19 seconds after Columbus defenseman Rostislav Klesla was penalized for hooking.

"I'm just glad I got an opportunity to get out there," Lebda said. "We have some injuries and that's unfortunate. But I'm looking forward to getting some extra time."

The Red Wings played without two defensemen - captain Nicklas Lidstrom and Niklas Kronwall - and left wing Henrik Zetterberg. Lidstrom and Zetterberg are bothered by back problems and Kronwall will miss at least six weeks with a fractured sacrum.

Lebda had suffered a concussion in Detroit's 3-2 shootout loss to St. Louis on March 24.

Holmstrom screened Norrena and deflected a shot by Jiri Hudler past Norrena with 9:33 left in the second period, giving the Red Wings a 2-0 lead.

The Blue Jackets had the man advantage when Detroit's Kris Draper was sent off for tripping with 3:42 remaining in the period. But 58 seconds into that penalty, Pavel Datsyuk pounced on a loose puck near center ice after Blue Jackets defenseman Anders Eriksson failed to keep it in the zone.

Datsyuk skated in alone on Norrena and fired a quick wrister between the goalie's pads, increasing the lead to 3-0.

Holmstrom scored his second goal of the game 49 seconds into the third period. His total of 28 goals is one shy of tying a career high.

The Blue Jackets broke Dominik Hasek's shutout bid when Rick Nash jammed in his own rebound on a wraparound with just 59 seconds left in the third period.

"They had a better power play and penalty kill than us," Nash said. "That was really the difference in the game."

Hasek, who made 31 saves, has 75 career shutouts.

"I feel like we controlled the ice," Hasek said. "A lot of guys stepped up and we played a solid game."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 0 3 1 4
    COLUMBUS 0 0 1 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: DET - (PP) BRETT LEBDA 5 (MIKAEL SAMUELSSON, ROBERT LANG)
    1:57
    DET - TOMAS HOLMSTROM 27 (JIRI HUDLER, BRETT LEBDA) 10:27
    DET - (SH) PAVEL DATSYUK 27 (UNASSISTED) 17:16
    3RD PRD: DET - TOMAS HOLMSTROM 28

    Apr 1 2:58 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 4
    COLUMBUS 1
    3RD PRD: COB - RICK NASH 25 (UNASSISTED) 19:01

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsApr 1 2:56 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 4
    COLUMBUS 0
    3RD PRD: DET - TOMAS HOLMSTROM 28 (KRIS DRAPER, DANIEL CLEARY) 0:49

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsApr 1 2:23 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 0 3 3
    COLUMBUS 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: DET - (PP) BRETT LEBDA 5 (MIKAEL SAMUELSSON, ROBERT LANG)
    1:57
    DET - TOMAS HOLMSTROM 27 (JIRI HUDLER, BRETT LEBDA) 10:27
    DET - (SH) PAVEL DATSYUK 27 (UNASSISTED) 17:16
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Apr 1 2:02 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLUMBUS 0
    2ND PRD: DET - (SH) PAVEL DATSYUK 27 (UNASSISTED) 17:16

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsApr 1 1:58 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 2
    COLUMBUS 0
    2ND PRD: DET - TOMAS HOLMSTROM 27 (JIRI HUDLER, BRETT LEBDA) 10:27

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsApr 1 1:50 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 1
    COLUMBUS 0
    2ND PRD: DET - (PP) BRETT LEBDA 5 (MIKAEL SAMUELSSON, ROBERT LANG)
    1:57

    Red Wings vs. Blue JacketsApr 1 1:32 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 0 0
    COLUMBUS 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DET 8 8
    COB 13 13
    GOALIES: DET - DOMINIK HASEK
    COB - FREDRIK NORRENA

    Apr 1 1:11 PM