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(Wednesday, April 13th)
Final Score: Detroit 4, Phoenix 2
Detroit, MI (Sports Network) - Johan Franzen picked up a goal and one assist as Detroit used a three-goal second period to down Phoenix, 4-2, in Game 1 of their Western Conference quarterfinal series at Joe Louis Arena.
"Good for him and good for us," said Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock about Franzen, who has recorded a point in 13 straight playoff games. "With him getting a goal and seeing his line get a couple, it was a definite positive to the outcome."
Pavel Datsyuk, Jiri Hudler and Brian Rafalski also tallied for the Red Wings, while Jimmy Howard stopped 26 shots.
Kyle Turris and Radim Vrbata hit the net for the Coyotes, who fell behind in the set despite 32 stops from Ilya Bryzgalov.
"We fell behind after taking that lead with the initial burst. It could have been the difference in the game. We needed better execution, especially in the first period," said Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett about the wealth of power- play chances the club failed to convert early on after scoring the first goal."
Game 2 takes place in Detroit on Saturday afternoon.
The home team finally hit the scoreboard just after a power play expired, at 7:38 of the second period, when Datsyuk's wraparound beat Bryzgalov to the right post.
Franzen's harmless shot through a screen from long distance gave Detroit a 2-1 lead inside of eight minutes left in the second, and a point blast by Rafalski on another advantage made it 3-1 with 1:44 left before intermission.
Hudler scored from a tight angle inside the far post from the left wing at 3:16 of the third period, but Vrbata beat Howard to the long side for a 4-2 game at 7:38.
The Coyotes couldn't cut into their deficit on a subsequent power play, then had to fend off several quality Wings chances to the empty net in the final 90 seconds.
Turris opened the scoring just 2:16 after the opening faceoff, ripping a shot from the top of the right circle high and over Howard's glove.
Detroit survived a lengthy two-man disadvantage, then the Wings got a break when Coyotes captain Shane Doan failed to release a shot on a short-handed breakaway with 5 1/2 minutes left in the first.
"The game would have been over (if they hadn't killed off the 5-on-3)," said Babcock. "They scored first and to get four penalties in a row like that, the standard is set for the playoffs. They warned us and we didn't adjust."
On Monday, the Wings revealed that forward Henrik Zetterberg would miss the game with a lower-body injury...It is the second straight meeting between the clubs in the first round...Detroit won a seven-game decision last year, and has won all three previous matchups (1996 vs. Winnipeg, 1998, 2010 vs. Phoenix)...Prior to the game, Phoenix recalled a host of players from its AHL affiliate in San Antonio...The Red Wings finished 1-for-3 on the power play and the Coyotes came up empty on six tries.
04/13 23:59:57 ET
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