Wings 5, Blue Jackets 0Hasek's practice makes perfect
Ted Kulfan / The Detroit News
DETROIT -- This is another example of why Dominik Hasek is a Hall of Fame goalie, with a work ethic to match.
Not necessarily the Red Wings' 5-0 victory Wednesday over the Columbus Blue Jackets, Hasek's fifth shutout of the season and 73rd of his career.
It was what happened the day before, a day off for the team, but one in which Hasek came to Joe Louis Arena anyway and took to the ice with forward Matt Ellis.
After allowing three goals in the first period Monday, and being pulled, Hasek wasn't satisfied.
"If you give up three goals on nine shots, you don't feel very good about yourself," said Hasek, who called Ellis, who shot on Hasek for about 30 minutes.
Hasek had a regularly scheduled day off Sunday in Columbus. After getting the limited work Monday, it was time to get back on the ice, he figured. .
"I just felt I needed it," said Hasek of getting on the ice Tuesday, while everyone else enjoyed returning home from a five-day trip. "I needed a practice. I felt better today."
Hasek faced 27 shots, aggressively poke-checked a shot away from Rick Nash in the first period that set the tone for the rest of the game, and came back impressively from Monday's outing.
"When I got the phone call in the morning, I could tell he was anxious to come down to the rink and take some shots," Ellis said. "When I got the phone call, there was no question I was coming down, and it's things like that that show you why he's one of the best goalies to ever play the game.
"The work ethic after a long road trip, that's inspiring for young hockey players."
Dan Cleary had two goals (one a power play) for the Wings. Kirk Maltby, Nicklas Lidstrom (power play) and Jason Williams added the others.
Cleary's two goals gave him a team-leading 13, passing Henrik Zetterberg (12).
"My philosophy is, go to the net, and that's what happened on both goals," Cleary said. "It's a good feeling (to score goals), especially with the team winning. We're getting contributions from a lot of people."
Both goals came in the first period, both deflections of shots from the point, giving the Wings a 2-0 lead 10 minutes into the game.
Mathieu Schneider's assist on Cleary's first goal extended Schneider's point streak to 11 games (14 points, two goals, 12 assists).
After a slow start Monday, the Wings jumped on the Blue Jackets quickly this time.
"We have a real mature group and they were ready to go," coach Mike Babcock said.
Maltby's goal, his first of the season, ended a scoreless streak of 43 games. He last scored March 27, 2006, against St. Louis.
"That was great to see," Babcock said. "You talk about a guy who has been snake-bit."
"It was nice to contribute," Maltby said. "We got the win, and hopefully now I can contribute the rest of the season."
You can reach Ted Kulfan at (313) 223-4606 or firstname.lastname@example.org