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The Breakdown: Red Wings Don’t Want Leafs Loss to Become Two Losses



Ville Husso, Red Wings
Ville Husso didn't have his best night against Toronto. He was pulled after giving up four goals.

DETROIT — Coach Derek Lalonde’s message to his Detroit Red Wings players after a 4-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs was good teams don’t allow one disappointing loss to morph into a two-game losing streak.

“A good team looks at tonight for what it was,” Lalonde said. “We played pretty well and you take it from that. Have a good practice tomorrow and you find a way to win on Wednesday.”

The Red Wings play the Sabres at home on Wednesday.

“A team that isn’t a winning team, or still finding themselves, now you play poorly on Wednesday and now you’re in the midst of a two-game losing streak,” Lalonde said. “I’m excited to see how this team is going to handle this.”

The Red Wings out-shot the Maple Leafs 44-25 and out-hit them 25-18 and yet couldn’t find a way to win the Atlantic Division matchup.

Ville Husso gave up three goals on the Maple Leafs’ first six shots. This was Husso’s first loss in regulation since the New York Rangers put up eight to beat him on Nov. 10. He was 4-0-1 in his last five coming into the Toronto Game.

“I’m sure if you ask him he’s gonna want maybe three of the four back, but that’s a tough task to not face much action at all,” Lalonde said. “And then what we did give up was unfortunately too good of a look to too good of players.”

Marner’s Goal Stung

Auston Matthews scored on Toronto first shot at 8:24 of the first period. The Red Wings had taken a 1-0 lead when Moritz Seider moved in from the blue line knock home a loose puck.

“They’re first offensive chance is a three-on-one (eight) minutes into the first period
and obviously, it’s in the back of the net,” Lalonde said.

After Matthews scored, William Nylander added a power-play tally 51 seconds later.

Mitch Marner added a back-breaking goal 52 seconds into the second period to make it a 3-1 game. Again, Marner was in the slot in a high danger scoring area.

“That was a tough one,” Detroit captain Dylan Larkin said. “You don’t want to see your goalie get pulled
but Huss will be the first one to say that he would like a few of those back and he said it to us.”

After Toronto’s fourth goal, Husso was out and Alex Nedeljkovic. He had a clean sheet the rest of the game, stopping 12 shots.

Last season, the Maple Leafs beat Detroit 10-7 in game. This game didn’t become that game.

Said Larkin: “We had a lot of chances, we just didn’t get the puck in the net. Credit to the way they played and (Matt) Murray in net. We had looks in the slot, we had looks all around it. We didn’t capitalize. They
capitalized on their chances.”

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Facts and Observations

  1. Defenseman Filip Hronek’s point-scoring streak ended at six games. He had six goals and four assists for 10 points in that span.

  2. Dominik Kubalik had one assist and seven shots on goal against Toronto. Michael Rasmussen had five hits in 10 minutes of play.

  3. Leaf Nation is always well-represented in Toronto games in Detroit. The cheers for Maple Leafs’ goals were just as jubilant as the roar for Detroit goals.

  4. The Red Wings are not getting better in the faceoff circle. They only managed to win 44% of draw against the Maple Leafs.

  5. Defenseman Moritz Seider posted a goal and an assist against Toronto to become the fourth defenseman in Red Wings’ history with 60 or more points at age 21 or youngers. The others: Steve Chiasson (63 in 139 games), Reed Larson (61 in 89) and Nicklas Lidstrom (60 in 80).