Detroit at St. Louis

Red Wings defense helps Osgood shut down Blues wire reports

ST. LOUIS -- Detroit center Valtteri Filppula took advantage of a golden opportunity.

Given more playing time because of injuries to Tomas Holmstrom and Henrik Zetterberg, Filppula stepped to the forefront Wednesday with the first two-goal game of his career, leading the Red Wings past St. Louis 5-0.

Goalie Chris Osgood stopped 20 shots to record his 45th career shutout. Brian Rafalski added a goal and two assists, Jiri Hudler chipped in with a goal and an assist and Nicklas Lidstrom had the other tally for the Red Wings, who improved to 27-7-3. St. Louis, playing in front of its largest crowd of the season -- 19,250 -- fell to 18-13-3.

Filppula, who has 11 goals in his second NHL season, scored twice in a span of 126 seconds in the second period to put the Red Wings in control, 4-0. Pavel Datsyuk set up the first tally with a pass across the goal crease that Filppula tipped past St. Louis goalie Manny Legace. Minutes later, Filppula scored off a feed from Hudler.

"I got a couple lucky bounces and my teammates made some great plays setting me up," said the native of Vantaa, Finland. "I was in good position and they got me the puck."

Filppula couldn't have picked a better time for a breakout performance. Zetterberg, who has 25 goals and 50 points, missed the game with a back injury and Holmstrom suffered a bruised knee on Dec. 20.

"It's sad because we need those guys out there," said Filppula. "But it gives more ice time to others so they can show what they can do."

Detroit coach Mike Babcock was more than pleased by the way his front-liners filled in.

"Injuries give you the opportunity to find out how good some of the other guys are," he said. "Actually, it helps your team get deeper over time. If your team is a good team, the injuries will make your stronger."

Filppula is on a roll, with seven goals in his last nine games after beginning the season with 10 scoreless games.

Osgood, who improved to 16-2-1, helped the Red Wings make an early statement by stopping Andy McDonald from close range in the first minute of the game. The triumph served as revenge for Osgood, who had his eight-game unbeaten streak stopped in the Blues' 3-2 win in St. Louis on Dec. 20.

The Red Wings gave up a 2-1 lead in that contest six days ago but came out ready on Wednesday.

"The last time we came in here we let them dictate the physical style of play," said Babcock. "This time, we just said, 'let's go out there after them."'

Lidstrom, who signed a new $15 million, two-year contract earlier in the day, got Detroit started with a blast from the left faceoff dot just 2:26 into the game. Hudler made it 2-0 on a sharp pass from Mikael Samuelsson in the second period. Filppula then exploded for his two goals before Rafalski rounded out the scoring.

The win was the fifth in six games for Detroit, which improved to 10-1-1 in December.

St. Louis, which has won just twice in its last six games, was 0-for-5 on the power play.

"We played them hard," said St. Louis coach Andy Murray. "We recognize them for what they are - a great team."


  • The Blues sold 100 standing room only tickets to the sold-out contest for the first time in the history of the Scotttrade Center.
  • St. Louis rookie winger David Perron missed his Tuesday night flight from Montreal to St. Louis and could not get back in time for the Wednesday morning skate. He was declared a healthy scratch. St. Louis defenseman Bryce Salvador missed the contest with a hip flexor injury.
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Down on the ice, Chris Osgood makes a leg save to preserve his shutout, the 45th of his career. (AP)
Down on the ice, Chris Osgood makes a leg save to preserve his shutout, the 45th of his career. (AP)
Related Links
Detroit  (27-7-3) «2215
St. Louis (18-13-3)0000
Three Stars
V. Filppula

Goals: 2
Assist(s): 0
P. Datsyuk

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 3
B. Rafalski

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 2

Related Video

Scoring Summary
02:26Nicklas Lidstrom (4), Slap Shot. Assist: Pavel Datsyuk
07:27Jiri Hudler (9), Wrist Shot. Assist: Mikael Samuelsson, Brian Rafalski
05:31Power Play - Valtteri Filppula (10), Tip-In. Assist: Pavel Datsyuk, Brian Rafalski
07:37Valtteri Filppula (11), Snap Shot. Assist: Jiri Hudler, Mikael Samuelsson
09:11Power Play - Brian Rafalski (5), Slap Shot. Assist: Nicklas Lidstrom, Pavel Datsyuk
Penalty Summary
01:34Rucinsky, 2 min, Hooking
04:49Walker, 5 min, Fighting
04:49Walker, 2 min, Roughing
04:49Franzen, 5 min, Fighting
10:05Lilja, 2 min, Delay of Game
17:55Kronwall, 2 min, Interference
18:46Lilja, 2 min, Cross-Checking
02:34Lebda, 2 min, Tripping
08:04Brewer, 2 min, Roughing
08:04Kopecky, 2 min, Elbowing
08:49Backman, 2 min, Hooking
18:14Lilja, 2 min, Hooking
Shots On Goal
St. Louis66820
Chris Osgood60:00200
Manny Legace27:37124
Hannu Toivonen32:18101
Game Information
Attendance - 19250
Referees - Gord Dwyer, Tim Peel
Linesmen - Ryan Galloway, Derek Nansen
Other Games
Tor 3 Final
Ott 5 Final
Buf 3
SJ 3 Final
LA 2
Nash 2 Final
Chi 5
Car 2 Final
TB 2 Final
Wash 3
Atl 0 Final
Colu 2
Min 3 Final
Dal 8