Last Updated: April 11. 2010 6:22PMRed Wings 3, Blackhawks 2 (OT): Detroit will begin playoffs in Phoenix
Chris McCosky / The Detroit News
Chicago -- The Red Wings will start the playoffs in Phoenix either Wednesday or Thursday.
The Wings clinched the fifth spot in the West and a trip to the desert when Brad Stuart finished a pretty pass from Danny Cleary to secure a 3-2 overtime victory over the Blackhawks Sunday.
The win also meant San Jose would get the No. 1 seed.
The Wings closed the regular season on a 13-1-2 run. They also ended with eight straight one-goal games. They went 6-1-1.
The Wings, outplayed badly through two periods, found themselves up 2-1 at 7:10 of the third after Brian Rafalski's wrist shot found its way through a maze of players past goalie Antti Niemi.
But that lasted about three minutes. After the play went end to end a couple of times, Marian Hossa threw the puck across the crease and it deflected past Jimmy Howard off the skate of Colin Fraser.
The play was reviewed and the goal was confirmed. Fraser made no kicking motion.
The Wings had to kill off a tripping penalty on Johan Franzen in the final 2:32, but they got the game into overtime.
The Red Wings came out of the second period with a 1-1 tie thanks to some stellar play by Howard. The Blackhawks kept steady pressure in the Wings' zone. They had a 16-3 edge in shots. They had two power play chances and were dangerous on both.
But Howard stood the test. He made three terrific saves on Patrick Sharp, two of them on one extended sequence in which the Wings' twice iced the puck, leaving the five skaters stranded for nearly a full minute.
Yet it was the Wings who got the only goal in the period, on a strong play by Patrick Eaves and Cleary. Eaves made the first pass, sending Cleary into the Hawks' zone. Cleary got off a hard shot that Eaves followed up and buried for his 12th of the season.
The Hawks had a 23-12 edge in shots on goal through two periods. If you add the missed shots and blocks, they sent 46 shots at Howard through two periods.
The Blackhawks took a 1-0 lead late in the first period on a power play goal by Dave Bolland. Eleven seconds after Kris Draper was sent off for interference, Jonathan Toews drove the puck to the net and Bolland stormed the crease. The puck seemed to go in off Bolland's skate.
It was the first power play goal allowed by the Wings' in five games.
The Wings had a couple of chances. Jason Williams shot one off the post and then during a power play, he knocked Antti Niemi's stick out of his hand with a blast.
On the same power play, Valtteri Filppula had a redirection chance denied by Niemi.
Niemi also stopped a mini-breakaway by Darren Helm.From The Detroit News: http://www.detnews.com/article/20100411/SPORTS0103/4110329/Red-Wings-3--Blackhawks-2-(OT)--Detroit-will-begin-playoffs-in-Phoenix#ixzz0kqzPbDCX