Detroit Red Wings left wing Justin Abdelkader (8) collides with Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask (40) during the third period at TD Banknorth Garden. (Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)
Red Wings’ backup goalie quiets Bruins
Given the late nod, Gustavsson, playing for the first time this season, saw his teammates play well in front of him and did the job in the Red Wings’ 3-2 matinee victory over the Boston Bruins.
“Monster (Gustavsson) did a great job coming in there. He played a great game for us, so he deserves all the credit today,” said Howard, who handled only two shots in practice and called himself “probably just day to day.”
Coming into the rematch, Detroit coach Mike Babcock said, “Let’s get started on time and play the way we’re capable of,” and his team then did just that.“They embarrassed us last time in here,” said Cleary. “We kind of came in making sure we were ready, obviously Howard went out early, and I thought Gustavsson played real well for us.”
Milan Lucic (No. 3, 100 career) scored with 1:20 remaining in the game, after the Bruins had failed on another power play. Boston then pulled goalie Tuukka Rask and did plenty of buzzing in the Detroit zone, but to no avail.
“They don’t need much space to make things happen, so for us, we got to tidy up,” said defenseman Torey Krug. “Just because you’re a stick-length away from a guy doesn’t mean you got him covered. Obviously, they’re going to be making good plays. They’re a very creative, very disciplined team. Credit to them; they made their chances count.”
“We’re really struggling with our finish right now and the pressure of scoring goals,” said Boston coach Claude Julien. “It’s not coming easy and the game in Columbus (a 3-1 win Saturday) it took us awhile to get going and obviously Colorado (a shutout loss), so I think our goal-scoring confidence is probably not where we’d like it to be right now.”
Datsyuk, who went around Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara to set up the Zetterberg goal, was brilliant throughout for Detroit.
NOTES: Bruins center, coach, GM and legend Milt Schmidt, 95, dropped the ceremonial first puck, as the club, in its 90th season, honored the teams of the 1940s. ... The Bruins embark on a three-game road trip to Florida, Tampa Bay and Buffalo, while the Red Wings host Columbus tonight, a game changed to an 8 p.m. start because the Tigers play the Red Sox in Detroit at 4:07. ... These two Original Six teams played for the 581st time, and they are separated by 10 goals in their all-time series. They play in Detroit Nov. 27 and April 2. ... Detroit RW Jordan Tootoo was OK after taking a two-hand slash to the hand from Philadelphia’s Chris Newberry Saturday night. ... Julien attended Sunday night’s wild Red Sox game, which followed the Patriots’ crazy comeback against New Orleans. “It was pretty neat,” he said Monday. “What a day for Boston fans, right? When you look at the Patriots game ending which I heard on my way to the Sox game, to witness that comeback last night was pretty awesome.” ... Bruins RW Shawn Thornton played in his 500th game.