for this game

Filppula tallies twice as Red Wings down Avalanche

Dec 28, 2007 - 5:32 AM
By Derek Nagy PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

DENVER (Ticker) - The second-best home team in the NHL was no match for the streaking Detroit Red Wings.

Valtteri Filppula scored a pair of goals and Jiri Hudler tallied the eventual game-winner as the Red Wings defeated the Colorado Avalanche, 4-2, on Thursday night.

Defenseman Niklas Kronwall assisted on both of Filppula's tallies and Mikael Samuelsson added an empty-net goal for Detroit, which is 5-1-0 in its last six road games and has just one loss in regulation in its last 15 games.

One night after recording his first career two-goal game in a 5-0 win over the St. Louis Blues, Filppula repeated the feat in just over four minutes in the first period on Thursday. The third-year center from Finland has now tallied 13 goals this season - two better than his previous career high, which was set last season.

"It's been going well right now, and I'm getting lucky bounces too," Filppula said. "It's not going to last forever though. I'm enjoying it and it's good for now."

Colorado, which entered the game with the second-best home record in the league behind Detroit, lost for just the fourth time in 20 games at the Pepsi Center.

In a spirited first period, the Red Wings got a pair of goals from Filppula before the Avalanche got a late tally.

Detroit's first goal came on a rush when Filppula, skating in the circle in the Colorado zone, backhanded a shot on net that Peter Budaj initially stopped, but the rebound deflected in off an Avalanche player for a 1-0 lead at 12:56 in the first period.

Filppula tallied again just over four minutes later when Kronwall fired a slap shot from just inside the zone that Budaj stopped, but again the rebound escaped him. Filppula gathered the loose puck and deposited it in the net for a 2-0 advantage.

Colorado halved the deficit just 92 seconds later, when Cody McLeod gained possession of the puck after a turnover by Brian Rafalski. The rookie wristed a shot past Dominik Hasek for his first career NHL goal.

"It's definitely something you want to do when you're growing up - to play in the NHL," McLeod said. "Then to steal a goal, that's kind of a bonus. It was kind of a big goal. We were down 2-0 right at the end of the first (period) and we got some life. But it's a tough one to lose tonight."

McLeod entered the game having played just three contests since being recalled from Lake Erie on December 16.

Colorado leveled the game at 2-2 at 5:56 in the second when Jaroslav Hlinka fired a shot on a rush that Hasek initially stopped, but the rebound went right to Marek Svatos, who buried it in an empty net for his 13th goal of the season.

Hudler gave Detroit a 3-2 lead when he blasted a shot from the center of the left circle and beat Budaj to his glove side with nine minutes remaining in the second period.

"It was a turnover by them," Hudler said. "It was 2-on-2. I saw (defenseman Derek Meech) on the far boards and tried to pass. Kris (Draper) gave it back to me and I just closed my eyes and shot the puck. This is the spot I like to shoot from, the right side."

Hasek made Hudler's goal stand up, stopping 22 shots in the contest and surviving a furious charge by Colorado in the final minutes before Samuelsson sent in his empty-net tally with 11 seconds to play.

"We scored the first two goals, and it was important for us to play with the lead - and go to the third period with the lead. We played smart hockey and didn't give them many chances in the third," Hasek said.

Detroit improved to 4-3 on the second night of back-to-back contests.

"We didn't have the normal juice that we have, but we found a way," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "We had some timely saves and they had four power-play chances and we just had the one - so we had to be real good on the penalty kill."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 1 1 4
    COLORADO 1 1 0 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL) 12:56
    DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL, MIKAEL
    SAMUELSSON) 17:05
    COL - CODY MCLEOD 1 (UNASSISTED) 18:37
    2ND PRD: COL - MAREK SVATOS 13 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, JEFF FI

    Dec 27 11:24 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 4
    COLORADO 2
    3RD PRD: DET - (EN) MIKAEL SAMUELSSON 5 (NIKLAS KRONWALL) 19:49

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 11:24 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 1 3
    COLORADO 1 1 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL) 12:56
    DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL, MIKAEL
    SAMUELSSON) 17:05
    COL - CODY MCLEOD 1 (UNASSISTED) 18:37
    2ND PRD: COL - MAREK SVATOS 13 (JAROSLAV HL

    Dec 27 10:32 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 3
    COLORADO 2
    2ND PRD: DET - JIRI HUDLER 10 (KRIS DRAPER, BRETT LEBDA) 11:00

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 10:16 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 2
    COLORADO 2
    2ND PRD: COL - MAREK SVATOS 13 (JAROSLAV HLINKA, JEFF FINGER) 5:56

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 10:07 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    DETROIT 2 2
    COLORADO 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 13 (VALTTERI FILPPULA) 12:56
    DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL, MIKAEL
    SAMUELSSON) 17:05
    COL - CODY MCLEOD 1 (UNASSISTED) 18:37
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --

    Dec 27 9:39 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 2
    COLORADO 1
    1ST PRD: COL - CODY MCLEOD 1 (UNASSISTED) 18:37

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 9:39 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 2
    COLORADO 0
    1ST PRD: DET - VALTTERI FILPPULA 12 (NIKLAS KRONWALL, MIKAEL
    SAMUELSSON) 17:05

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    DETROIT 1
    COLORADO 0
    1ST PRD: DET - DANIEL CLEARY 13 (VALTTERI FILPPULA) 12:56

    Red Wings vs. AvalancheDec 27 9:28 PM