Thomas Greiss made 40 saves to assure the lead the Detroit Red Wings took early in the second period stood up in a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday night.
Greiss, from Fussen, Germany, was acrobatic in goal and displayed a knack of coming up big with nearly every good chance the Canucks had to score. He received plenty of vocal support from the fans.
However, he also received a bit of good fortune when he needed it. Canucks left wing Justin Dowling hit the far post with a backhander with 7:26 remaining in the game. And, with only 2:31 to play, a re-directed slap shot goal was disallowed because of an interference call in front of Greiss.
Detroit’s Sam Gagner scored an empty-net goal with 58 seconds left to provide the two-goal cushion. Vancouver had pulled its goalie with 2:27 remaining in the third period.
Detroit jumped ahead, 2-1, with a goal at 6:42 of the second period by right wing Filip Zadina, playing sniper positioned to the left of Vancouver goalie Jaroslav Halak. Zadina, from the Czech Republic, fired a one-timer that Halak couldn’t snare with his glove to the short side of the net.
Defensemen Moritz Seider and Filip Hronek received assists on the go-ahead score by cycling passes to Zadina.
Robby Fabbri got the Red Wings a 1-0 lead with a goal at 11:05 of the first period. He redirected a shot from defenseman Marc Staal past Halak and defenseman Gustav Lindstrom also received an assist.
It was the first goal of the season for Fabbri, who was centering Detroit’s No. 1 line in the absence of captain Dylan Larkin.
Larkin was serving a one-game suspension after being ejected in the Red Wings’ season-opening 7-6 overtime loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night. He was ejected for taking a match penalty by punching Mathieu Joseph in response to being driven, head-first, into the boards.
Vancouver evened the score, 1-1, on a power play goal early in the second period by right wing Conor Garland with assists to his No. 1 line center Bo Horvat and left wing Tanner Pearson.
It was Garland’s first goal of the young season, but Detroit regained the lead less than two minutes later on Zadina’s tally at 6:42 of the middle period.
Greiss made sure the Red Wings stayed ahead shortly after that goal. He went down to make a quick pad save before smothering the rebound with his glove.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS