After breaking their 10-game losing against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday, the Detroit Red Wings were hoping to carry that momentum to Thursday night’s tilt against the Washington Capitals. Coming into Thursday’s matchup, the Capitals had won five of their past six games.
However, the Capitals — more specifically Philipp Grubauer — continued their solid play, beating the Red Wings 1-0 and officially eliminating them from playoff contention.
It appeared the Red Wings were going to take a 1-0 lead about midway through the first period, but Andreas Athanasiou’s goal was overturned after the Capitals challenged for goalie interference and won.
If you missed the AA "goal"/Bertuzzi goaltender interference call, Sportsnet posted a video of the incident: https://t.co/MTOXduaSjN
— George Malik (@georgemalik) March 23, 2018
Neither team was able to score for the rest of the period, but the Red Wings held the possession advantage through the first 20 minutes. The Red Wings outattempted the Capitals 25-17 (16-9 at 5 on 5) and outshot them 13-11 (7-7 at 5 on 5) in the first period.
Detroit won the possession battle again in the second period — they failed to score on a 5 on 3 power play — but again, both teams couldn’t break the scoreless tie. The Red Wings outattempted the Capitals 28-18 (22-18 at 5 on 5) and outshot them 15-10 (12-10 at 5 on 5) in the second period.
About seven minutes into the third period, the Capitals finally broke through, after Xavier Ouellet lost the puck at the blueline and Brett Connolly scored on the ensuing 2 on 0.
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) March 23, 2018
One goal was all the Capitals needed to secure the win.
The Red Wings outattempted the Capitals 16-13 (15-7 at 5 on 5) and outshot them 10-5 (9-2 at 5 on 5) in the third period.
The Red Wings dominated possession for most of the game, but they ran into a hot goaltender in Grubauer, who made 39 saves en route to the shutout.
Jimmy Howard made 25 saves for the Red Wings and gave them a shot to win.
MOTOR CITY MVP
Tonight’s Motor City MVP is Athanasiou. He had the one goal disallowed, but he also led the team in 5 on 5 shot attempts differential (11) and had a 1.06 game score, second to Howard’s 1.75.
The Red Wings get a travel day on Friday before facing the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday at Air Canada Centre. Puck drop is 7 p.m., and you can catch the action on Fox Sports Detroit and CBC in Canada. As always, we’ll have the pregame report early Saturday afternoon.