Game 19: Red Wings-Winnipeg Enotes

The Red Wings have the margin for error of a heart surgeon these days, when it comes to games played at Joe Louis Arena.

They’ve lost games at JLA while giving up tons of shots. They’v lost games because of an inept power play. They’ve lost games because of turnovers.

Well, they lost again at home on Tuesday night, 3-2 to the Winnipeg Jets in a shootout, and it hardly seems fair.

The Red Wings yielded just 23 shots on goal, while firing 45 at Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec. They scored two power play goals. And they cut down on the turnovers.

Yet the Red Wings have now gone six straight games at the Joe without a win. Andrew Ladd, who has a habit of scoring big goals, tallied the eventual game-winner for the second game in a row for the Jets in a shootout.

Despite doing better in the categories mentioned above, there’s still one area that didn’t improve on Tuesday—coaxing anything, offensively, from any player not named Zetterberg or Datsyuk.

Pavel Datsyuk scored both Red Wings goals, one from a bullet, cross-ice pace from Henrik Zetterberg that Datsyuk fired into a half open net to tie the game, 1-1.

But once again, the Red Wings are a one-trick pony on offense. The lack of secondary scoring is killing them. Nobody else can put the puck in the net other than the EuroTwins.

The Red Wings (9-5-5) played one of their best home games of the season yet still didn’t come away with two points. This is a time for belief, faith and patience. The season is too young to panic that those extra points at home aren’t coming.

At least this wasn’t a contest where the Red Wings had more turnovers than a bakery. The Jets mustered just 19 SOG in regulation. Yet it was Detroit that played catch-up all night; the Jets were never behind in the only column that mattered—that being on the scoreboard.

BOTTOM LINE: It’s getting tiresome watching the visitors in white shirts celebrate on JLA ice, isn’t it?

THE WINGED WHEELER SAYS: The Jets’ two goals in regulation were both the result of pretty passing and deadly accurate shots. Ladd continues to vex the Red Wings, even as a member of the Jets, after doing so to Detroit as a Chicago Blackhawk. This is a game the Red Wings can maybe build on, however, despite the result. The Wings will win far more games than they’ll lose if they play the way they did on Tuesday.

 

Spotlight on the Opponent: Andrew Ladd

What: Winnipeg at Detroit
When: Tuesday, November 12, 7:30pm (TV: FSD, TSN)

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The Winnipeg Jets, for all their youth and their struggles to stay afloat in the NHL Central Division, actually have a two-time Stanley Cup winner on their roster.

He’s Andrew Ladd, and the Red Wings thought they were rid of this guy, who was part of the Chicago Blackhawks teams who wrested Western Conference supremacy from the Wings starting in 2010.

But Ladd, at age 27, is in his prime and is second in scoring on the Jets roster, behind Bryan Little.

And he has those two Cups.

The first came in 2006, when Ladd toiled for the surprising Carolina Hurricanes. The second was in 2010, with Chicago.

Ladd was drafted 4th overall in 2004 by Carolina, and after some injury issues in 2007, he was dealt to the Blackhawks at the trading deadline in February 2008. In 2010, Ladd was traded by Chicago to Atlanta, with his contract set to expire after the 2010-11 season. Ladd then inked a 5-year, $22 million deal with Winnipeg (Atlanta moved to Winnipeg after the 2010-11 season) in July 2011, after timing his “contract year” wonderfully, scoring a carer-high 29 goals.

The left-winger kind of flies under the radar, but the truth is that Ladd is kind of a sniper, having already scored 143 goals in the NHL. He’s generally considered one of the toughest forwards to play against in the league.

Ladd scored the shootout winner for the Jets Sunday night in a home win over San Jose, after having scored the game-tying goal with 1:43 left in regulation.

In a 4-2 win over the Red Wings in Winnipeg on November 4, Ladd had a goal and an assist as he continues to be a thorn in the Wings’ side.

Jets coach Claude Noel says “Andrew does a lot of things for us. He’s our captain and leads our team.”

Ladd wears no. 16 for the Jets.