Final

Detroit won 4-3 (Game 1 of 7)

Detroit won 4-3

Game 1: Friday, May 1st
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Red Wings3
Game 2: Sunday, May 3rd
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3OT
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Game 3: Tuesday, May 5th
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Ducks2
Game 4: Thursday, May 7th
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Ducks3
Game 5: Sunday, May 10th
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Red Wings4
Game 6: Tuesday, May 12th
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Ducks2
Game 7: Thursday, May 14th
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Coverage: NBCSN

7:00 PM ET, May 1, 2009

Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan

1 2 3 T
ANA 1 1 02
DET 1 1 13

N. Lidstrom (Red Wings - D): Goals: 2, Assists: 1

J. Franzen (Red Wings - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

R. Getzlaf (Ducks - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

Lidstrom buries 2nd in final minute to lift Wings past Ducks in Game 1

Associated Press

DETROIT -- Nicklas Lidstrom usually plays a subtle style of hockey appreciated most by coaches, players and die-hard fans.

LeBrun: Put A Lid On It

Saturday afternoon, it'll be the young generation of Malkin, Crosby and Ovechkin on display. But Friday night, Nick Lidstrom showed that the NHL is still an old man's game, writes ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun. Story

The Detroit Red Wings defenseman's latest performance, though, was so spectacular it impressed an opponent.

"Special player," Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said.

Lidstrom scored his second goal of the game with 49.1 seconds left and had an assist, lifting the Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Ducks on Friday night in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinal series.

"I just get so amazed how he performs out there in a big game like this, in the last minute like that," teammate Jonathan Ericsson said. "He's so calm out there. I guess the experience speaks for itself. I get goose bumps."

Lidstrom is a finalist for the Norris Trophy. If he is honored as the NHL's best defenseman for the seventh time, he'll tie Doug Harvey's total and pull within one of Bobby Orr's record collection.

Despite turning 39 earlier this week, Lidstrom simply hasn't lost a step.

He started the winning play behind his net, skated up the ice, shot and scored off the rebound.

Stanley Cup Playoffs Blog

Check out the latest updates and analysis from the 2009 Stanley Cup playoffs as our NHL crew weighs in:
• 2009 Playoffs blog

"It came off my pad and he was there all alone," Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller said. "He was patient enough to wait until I moved."

Lidstrom scored a go-ahead goal for the defending Stanley Cup champions in the second period.

He assisted on Johan Franzen's goal that tied the game in the first following Detroit's only deficit of the playoffs, drawing praise from his coach.

"He's a talented player," Detroit's Mike Babcock said. "We're lucky to have him."

Chris Osgood had 22 saves to improve to 5-0 in this year's playoffs.

Hiller stopped 34 shots for the Ducks, who got goals from Corey Perry and Teemu Selanne.

"I'm upset from the standpoint that I thought we missed an opportunity tonight," Carlyle said.

Game 2 is Sunday in Detroit.

The last two Stanley Cup champions were evenly matched, but Detroit got the best of Anaheim in the final minute of a hotly contested game.

"It's playoff hockey and there's a lot of intensity out there," Lidstrom said. "Both teams want to win real hard and that really comes out in a game like this."

Since the NHL expanded in 1967, the defending champion and the previous Cup winner are meeting in the playoffs for the third time. The others were in 1991 when the Edmonton Oilers played the Calgary Flames, and in 1971 when the Montreal Canadiens faced the Boston Bruins.

Anaheim eliminated the Red Wings two years ago in the Western Conference finals en route to the title, and the fourth postseason matchup in a decade between the teams was intense.

Fast Facts

• Detroit has won Game 1 in seven consecutive series. It's the longest current streak of its kind and the longest streak for any team since Minnesota/Dallas won seven in a row from 1990 to 1994.

• Johan Franzen had a point in all four games in round one and now has a five-game postseason point streak (3 goals, 4 assists).

• Friday was the first time the Wings have trailed in the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

• Detroit is now 4-0-1 vs. Anaheim this season including the regular season. Four of the five games were one-goal games.

-- ESPN Stats & Information

The fifth got bloody early.

Ducks forward Mike Brown was ejected in the first period, appearing to land an elbow to the head of defenseless Jiri Hudler.

Brown, who insisted he hit Hudler with a shoulder and his visor cut him, hopes to play in Game 2.

"I don't know if it's necessary to get that suspension," Brown said. "It was a clean hit.

"I wasn't meaning to do any harm. I was just playing physical."

The game was delayed briefly while Hudler was helped off the ice and blood was scraped off it. A towel was pressed against a big cut above Hudler's left eye.

Detroit took advantage of the power play, tying the game on Franzen's goal off Lidstrom's assist.

Lidstrom gave Detroit a 2-1 lead early in the second period with a power-play goal off a slap shot.

But the Ducks didn't go away. Selanne scored a power-play goal with 17 seconds left in the middle period.

The eighth-seeded Ducks were competitive in the third, playing four days after knocking off the top-seeded San Jose Sharks. Second-seeded Detroit was on the ice for the first time in more than a week.

Game notes


Red Wings D Brian Rafalski was out with an upper-body injury and replaced by 47-year-old Chris Chelios, who played in his 261st playoff game and 24th postseason to extend his own records ahead of Patrick Roy (247) and Ray Bourque (21). ... Detroit and the Ducks have both won two series against each other. The Red Wings eliminated Anaheim en route to the 1997 Cup and in 1999. ... The Ducks beat Detroit in the 2003 playoffs with Babcock as their coach. ... Babcock (72) and Carlyle (49) have the most playoff victories and highest winning percentages since 2003.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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