Red Wings-Blue Jackets Game 1 Quick Take: strong start, sloppy finish, Wings are now 1-and-2

The Detroit Red Wings attempted to build upon Saturday night’s win over the Carolina Hurricanes as they faced off against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday…morning…opening up a 2-games-in-2-days series against the Wings’ old Central Division foe.

The Red Wings’ superb start did not find support in the form of a sloppy finish, so the Red Wings blew a 1-0 lead, trailed 3-1 by 6:26 in the 3rd, and Detroit was able to score a disputed goal very late in the 3rd to make it 3-2, but that’s all that a sloppy, indecisive Wings team had against a very motivated 0-and-2 Blue Jackets team. As a result, the Wings are 1-and-2 heading into tomorrow night’s rematch vs. Columbus.

Both teams posted their projected lines and starting goaltenders ahead of the game…

2 hours to puck drop!

Our projected lineup ⤵️ #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

The Game Summary, Event Summary and Roster sheets hit the interweb around 10:30, and FSD’s John Keating got to the rink early…

Space for just a smattering of players’ family members and friends. Afternoon hockey today. Red Wings Live at 11:30 on FSD. Wings-Blue Jackets at Noon. Then Pistons-Heat from Miami at 3pm!— John Keating (@JohnKeatingFSD) January 18, 2021

There were no surprises early…

Greiss and Korpisalo led their teams out onto the ice. Red Wings hockey coming your way at 11:45am ⁦@971theticketxyt#lgrw #tunein— Ken Kal (@KenKalDRW) January 18, 2021

Then this happened:

Fabri and Erne out due to COVID-19 protocols for today’s game. #RedWings— Justin Rose (@JRoseWXYZ) January 18, 2021

Rasmussen in for Fabbri. Nielsen in for Erne today. #RedWings vs. Blue Jackets at noon.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) January 18, 2021

So the Wings plugged the players necessary into their COVID-protocol-sidelined player spots:

#RedWings lines/D pairs:
Greiss starting
Bernier— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) January 18, 2021

This matters, too, if you live it…

Red Wings warmups are happening. Today we have helmet decals in celebration of the 63rd anniversary of Willie O’Ree becoming the first Black player in the League and to observe Martin Luther King Jr. Day.— David Guralnick (@DavidGuralnick) January 18, 2021

It took the Wings a while to confirm the Fabbri-and-Erne news…

Update: Robby Fabbri & Adam Erne are out today (COVID protocol). Michael Rasmussen & Frans Nielsen are in. #CBJvsDET— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Ultimately, these are the rosters both teams iced:

Off we go!

START US OFF!#CBJvsDET x #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

The puck dropped at center ice at 12:10 PM, and Glendening won the draw back to Stecher, who chipped the puck into the Blue Jackets’ zone.

Frans Nielsen got the Wings’ first shot all of 13 seconds into the game.

Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill was matching Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella’s line machinations, and the Zadina-Rasmussen-Ryan line got an early shift as a result.

The Red Wings took a 5-0 shot lead in the game’s first 1:37, but Columbus responded by holding the puck in the Wings’ zone and generating their first scoring chance on Thomas Greiss at 2:47.

An overabundance of turnovers at the Wings’ blueline and center ice did not aid the circumstances, but the Wings did a decent job of pressuring the Blue Jackets, who gained their footing slowly but surely.

Things got a little worse as the Wings surrendered a breakaway chance to Eric Robinson, but he chipped the puck wide off a stick check from Filip Hronek.

Merrill and DeKeyser did a fairly good job of defending the Blue Jackets as well, but Boone Jenner found himself alone in deep vs. Larkin, and he shanked a backhander over a prone Greiss.

After giving up 4 straight shots, the Red Wings were able to get Bertuzzi loose in the crease, but he was in too tight and stuffed the puck into Korpisalo’s toe…


BOBBY RYAN STARTS US OFF AGAIN!!!— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Bobby Ryan scores his second goal of the season— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) January 18, 2021

Faceoff win Michael Rasmussen and Bobby Ryan with the snipe. #LGRW— IcehockeyGifs (@IcehockeyG) January 18, 2021

Bobby Ryan. Off the draw, back of the net. #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Bobby Ryan scores right off the faceoff. Red Wings are up 1-0 on FOX Sports Detroit. #LGRW— FOX Sports Detroit (@FOXSportsDet) January 18, 2021

🙌— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Off a dim hook on a breaking-away Seth Jones by Eric Staal, the Blue Jackets cycled hard and worked a 6-on-5 for a bit…

And Seth Jones took his first penalty shot vs. Greiss…with Greiss patiently stifling Jones.


A big stop on a Seth Jones penalty shot keeps the #RedWings up 1-0! #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Greiss interrupts Jones’ shooting motion and there’s no score on the penalty shot. #CBJ— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Thank you very much, I’ll take that. Greisser Greisser Greisser being yelled all the way from NY to @DetroitRedWings— Brittney Greiss (@BrittneyGreiss1) January 18, 2021

The teams played fairly evenly for the next couple of minutes, but the Blue Jackets seemed to be able to take advantage of the Wings offensively–and block the Wings’ passes in their own zone–so it was slop on ice for the next 3-5 minutes.

The Wings were over-passing, too:

Savard breaks up the 2-on-1 #CBJ #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

But, still…

5:30 left in 1st period, #RedWings leading Columbus 1-0…shots are 12-6 edge for Wings,— Ted Kulfan (@tkulfan) January 18, 2021

Greiss made a lovely little stick stop on Robinson with just over 3 minutes remaining in the 1st, as he got behind the Wings’ defense again…

Rasmussen had a good, physical shift just before that…

Tyler Bertuzzi was stifled by Korpisalo with just over 2 minutes remaining in the 1st…

Korpisalo stops Bertuzzi. It’s not always pretty – as long as it’s effective, I guess!— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Greiss made a huge stop on Seth Jones–again–as a Tyler Bertuzzi turnover in the offensive zone –> a 3-on-2 for Columbus –> a drop pass to Jones. Greiss came out to the hash marks to stop Jones.

The 1st period ended with Detroit out-shooting Columbus 13-8 and out-scoring them 1-0.

The beat writers liked what they’d witnessed:

Strong first period by #RedWings, who are up 1-0 on Blue Jackets, outshooting them 13-8. Larkin’s line particularly strong but all four lines had at least one scoring chance.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) January 18, 2021

After 20 minutes, #RedWings looking impressive while leading 1-0 over Columbus…shots are 13-8 edge for Wings— Ted Kulfan (@tkulfan) January 18, 2021

I thought the Wings were sloppy, but that’s just me.

YES!#CBJvsDET x #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Lookin’ good. 😎@BetMGM is coming soon! Sign up early for a special offer »— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

The 2nd period began at 1:06 PM EST, with Detroit leading 1-0.

Max Domi drew in vs. Luke Glendening, and the Wings won the faceoff, and battled the puck back to the blueline, up to center ice, and they chipped it off Blue Jackets players into the bench area.

  • Hronek and Mantha found stretch passes to spring Dylan Larkin, and Larkin was tripped by David Savard, giving the Red Wings a power play at 1:00 of the 2nd.

Detroit lost the initial faceoff, as is customary, and Filip Hronek had to stop a 2-on-1 off a Merrill gaffe…

Detroit played a sloppy power play for the most part, and the Blue Jackets were afforded easy clearing attempts. Tyler Bertuzzi, Dylan Larkin and Anthony Mantha were over-skating the puck on the second unit, and the power play expired with 0 shots for the Red Wings.

Filip Hronek played on both units for that power play — on the flank on his normal unit, and up top on the Larkin unit. That might be their best strategy going forward— Max Bultman (@m_bultman) January 18, 2021

Columbus tried to surge forward, and instead, Nielsen fed Glendening on a 2-on-1 play that shanked off the heel of Glendening’s stick and into Korpisalo.

Off a Greiss save, Namestnikov, Zadina and Ryan raced away, but were unable to convert, affording Columbus a scoring chance of their own.

The teams traded chances until the 6:10 mark of the 2nd period, which yielded the first TV timeout of the 2nd period.

Greiss made a BIG stop on Michael Del Zotto via a Werenski pass in tight, and the Blue Jackets seemed to take control of the game some 7 minutes into the 2nd, but Grigorenko was stifled by an awkward Greiss, and the Wings changed lines.

Nice patience by Kukan again, skating through the offensive zone to set up a chance, but Greiss turns aside Grigorenko’s one-timer.

Greiss has a .951 save percentage vs. #CBJ the last two years coming in.— Jeff Svoboda (@JacketsInsider) January 18, 2021

The Wings DID respond with a lovely Bobby Ryan steal-and-shot chance in the slot, and the Wings buzzed around the Blue Jackets zone a bit.

9 minutes into the 2nd period, the shots were 15-13 Detroit.

Patrik Nemeth had a very underrated game, especially against the Blue Jackets’ top line.

The halfway point of the game passed uneventfully, and the Wings were over-passing significantly.

Greiss had to skate out to stifle a Blue Jackets breakaway;

Filip Zadina fed Jon Merrill in the slot, but Merrill was unable to get the puck settled down on his backhand…

Larkin did take a hard shot on Korpisalo that both Bertuzzi and Mantha tried to jam home, but Korpisalo was up to the challenge–repeatedly.

With 6:52 left in the 2nd, the Wings finally got down to shooting the puck, and that was particularly helpful in terms of generating momentum as much as anything else (see: scoring chances).

  • The Blue Jackets were standing up at center ice, however, forcing turnovers by the Red Wings through the middle of the ice, and OLIVER BJORKSTRAND TOOK DVANTGE OF A WONKY BLOCK BY RASMUSSEN TO CHIP THE REBOUND PAST A HAPLESS GREISS.

Blue Jackets tie it at 1-1 at 15:11 of the second on goal by Bjorkstrand. #RedWings— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) January 18, 2021

Red Wings get stuck in their zone for a looong time and Bjorkstrand wires one past Greiss. It’s 1-1 with 5 minutes left in the second— Max Bultman (@m_bultman) January 18, 2021


Bjorky snipes it to tie the game at one a piece!— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 18, 2021

Columbus was being out-shot 10-8 in the 2nd and 23-16 overall, but the Blue Jackets were getting quality shots and quality scoring chances against an increasingly scrambly Wings team.

an unfortunate development because #RedWings had begun to dominate play, again.


the fine blocked shot by michael rasmussen, WHO IS STATING HIS CLAIM, THIS GAME, created a broken play and created LITTLE TIME for dekeyser, merrill and greiss to adjust #CBJvsDET— gregg krupa (@greggkrupa) January 18, 2021

#CBJ build up a tremendous amount of time in the offensive zone and finally capitalize. #CBJorkstrand cleans up off Jenner’s rebound.— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Bjorkstrand with the equalizer! 💥

The @BlueJacketsNHL tie the game 1-1. #CBJ

💻:— NHL on NBC Sports (@NHLonNBCSports) January 18, 2021

Some 16 minutes into the 2nd period, the Red Wings did their best to regain their footing, but they gave up a breakaway to Boone Jenner instead, and THOMAS GREISS MADE AN AMAZING STOP ON JENNER.

The Wings “dodged a bullet” as Greiss held the goal line until he was pitchforked into the net by a Blue Jacket forward.

Jenner with a min-break and thinks he scored but the goal is waved off on the ice.

Now under review. #CBJ #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

It was ruled a good stop.

No goal. Play continues #CBJ and #LGRW tied 1-1— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Stecher’s play during that exchange was a little worrisome, though.

The Wings just looked a little fuzzy in terms of their offensive zone play, and too easily beaten for odd-man rushes and breakaway attempts in their own zone. They were hanging in there by the skin of their teeth as the 2nd period wound down to its final minute.

The 2nd period ended with the shots even 11-11. Detroit out-shot Columbus 24-19 overall.

Gotta win the 3rd! #CBJvsDET x #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Two periods down, score is tied. Who will be the hero? #redwings— David Guralnick (@DavidGuralnick) January 18, 2021

L G R W ‼️— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

The 3rd period began at 2:01 PM, with the teams tied 1-1.

The Glendening-Brome-Nielsen line drew in for a faceoff and Glendening won his 12th consecutive faceoff to start the 3rd period.

The Wings snuck the Larkin line onto the ice early in the 3rd, but Columbus slid Domi’s line on to the ice in response, and neither team could generate scoring chances off their “stealth changes.”

  • Regrettably, Bobby Ryan headed to the penalty box for a trip at 1:53, sending Del Zotto to the ice.

Columbus headed to the power play, they cycled the puck in the Wings’ zone, and Greiss had to make a big stop against Emil Bemstrom…

Disturbingly, Bemstrom was allowed to walk into the Wings’ zone, and he shanked a puck off the crossbar.

Another look for Bemstrom. Second crossbar of the game for #CBJ— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Columbus really had its way with the Wings on the power play, and Greiss had some luck on his side.

Bottom line? PK killed. Despite some shaky play.

  • Bottom line 32: Patrik Nemeth and Filip Hronek got lost in their coverage, as did Vladislav Namestnikov, and Alexandre Texier was able to wrap the puck around the goal and chip it in past Greiss at 5:10.

Texier with wrap-around goal, and it’s 2-1 Columbus at 5:10 of 3rd period. #RedWings— Ted Kulfan (@tkulfan) January 18, 2021

TEX 🤠— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 18, 2021

#TexiYAY! #CBJ take the 2-1 lead over #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

EVEN WORSE, Pierre-Luc Dubois out-raced Troy Stecher to the net and chipped a puck over Thomas Greiss to make it 3-1 1:17 after the Texier goal.

And just like Dubos scores on breakaway and suddenly it’s 3-1 Columbus…2 goals 1:16 apart #RedWings shades of last season— Ted Kulfan (@tkulfan) January 18, 2021

3-1 #CBJ

Grigorenko with a beautifully banked puck launches Dubois for the score. #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Pierre-Luc Dubois with a great finish on the breakaway. 🔥#NHLonSN | #ItsOn— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) January 18, 2021

Detroit trailed in shots 7-0 at 7:50 of the 3rd. Bad changes, bad passes, bad coverage, all of that is on the team–and the coaching staff.

Sadly, THIS IS ALSO PART OF THE LEARNING PROCESS FOR A REBUILDING TEAM. When they collapse in the 3rd, you want them to learn from their mistakes and come back better for the 2nd game against Columbus tomorrow night. That’s cold comfort, but learning can be an ugly thing.

This didn’t help:

Namestnikov goes off after getting hit in face. Getting looked at in tunnel.— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) January 18, 2021

Dylan Larkin was double-shifted as Zadina and Ryan’s center, too, but the line change didn’t help the discombobulated Wings.

Anthony Mantha got his first shot of the 3rd with 8:59 remaining in the 3rd.

Zadina, Ryan and Namestnikov took to the ice as Rasmussen was not working out there…

  • And Columbus did take a penalty at 12:34 as Dubois tripped Bertuzzi.

The Red Wings went with Mantha, Bertuzzi, Ryan, Hronek and Larkin on the 1st PP unit, and Jones broke his stick, so Detroit had a temporary 5-on-3…But Columbus cleared the puck anyway.

The Red Wings got no shots on their power play, and emerged with only 5:22 remaining in the 3rd period.

RELENTLESS— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 18, 2021

The Red Wings seemed to shrivel like a raisin in the sun as the period wound down, playing tentatively as Columbus looked to extend their lead.

Jordan Staal managed to hit the goalpost skating into a drop pass in the Blue Jackets’ slot with just over 3 minutes remaining, and this play symbolized the Red Wings’ 3rd period “luck”:

This…was not a goal. Hit the crossbar. #LGRW #CBJ— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021


Korpisalo and #CBJ stand tall against a flurry of shots. #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Bertuzzi, Hronek, Mantha, Larkin, Ryan, Bertuzzi and Namestnikov all jammed the net, but Korpisalo was wise…

Texier got away with a cross-check on Namestnikov in front…

Detroit did its best to work the puck around, but too many passes –> a sloppy effort, and a multitude of turnovers.

The first line had to go off, and a messy mucky set of play followed.

Merrill broke his stick, Zadina fired the puck off a Blue Jacket, Werenski fired the puck wide of an empty net, and with 62 seconds to go, the Wings set up for a final flurry.


And it should have been a goal.

Puck ended up in the back of the net there, but Ryan had been shoved into Korpisalo to ultimately knock it loose— Max Bultman (@m_bultman) January 18, 2021

Puck crosses the line but play was already blown dead. #CBJ #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

All y’all want to talk about friends Werenski and Larkin fighting but I’m over here going “Bjorkstrand is FIGHTING?” #CBJ #LGRW— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Noted best friends Dylan Larkin and Zach Werenski drop the gloves (while Bobby Ryan finds a dancing partner in the background). Pandemonium in Detroit. #LGRW— Ryan Hana (@RyanHanaWWP) January 18, 2021


So, because of that fight, Red Wings are now down just one with 55.4 seconds left … but also down Larkin and Bertuzzi.— Max Bultman (@m_bultman) January 18, 2021

Review determines that a #CBJ player’s actions pushed the puck in. Good goal. 3-2 #CBJ lead #LGRW with under a minute to play.— Alison (@AlisonL) January 18, 2021

Call is overturned as Bobby Ryan was pushed into the goalie – good goal! 🚨 #LGRW— Ryan Hana (@RyanHanaWWP) January 18, 2021

Dylan Larkin and Zach Werenski going at it!

WILD— Michigan Hockey (@umichhockey) January 18, 2021

Monday afternoon fisticuffs 👊#NHLonSN | #ItsOn— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) January 18, 2021

The FINAL 55 yielded a Blue Jackets shot on Griess, a dump-in from the Red Wings, a grind and cycle, Mantha to Filppula to Mantha to Hronek to Mantha shot blocked rebound blocked and Columbus won the game.

FINAL: Blue Jackets 3, Red Wings 2— Detroit News Sports (@detnews_sports) January 18, 2021

Final: Blue Jackets 3, #RedWings 2. Wings outshot CBJ 37-29.— Ansar Khan (@AnsarKhanMLive) January 18, 2021

We. Never. Quit. #OutOfOurBlue#CBJ | @pedialyte— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 18, 2021

Mantha’s first of the season.

We’ll see you tomorrow, @BlueJacketsNHL.— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Mantha was given credit for the final goal for the 1-and-2 Wings, who face Columbus again tomorrow night at 7:30 PM EST.


Rematch tomorrow. #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Dylan Larkin and Zach Werenski got in a fight(!)— Brad Galli (@BradGalli) January 18, 2021

Also, regarding the 3-2 goal:

Bobby Ryan has been credited for the goal. Anthony Mantha and Filip Hronek assist.— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

Racked up some PIMs in the last few minutes there 😅#CBJ | @PNCBank— Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) January 18, 2021

Final numbers.#CBJvsDET x #LGRW— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 18, 2021

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.

One thought on “Red Wings-Blue Jackets Game 1 Quick Take: strong start, sloppy finish, Wings are now 1-and-2”

  1. “discombobulated Wings ” LOL Good Old Stuff

    Wings had a Grigorenko long ago, I was excited , BUT Health or Injuries stopped his hockey, I think

    Kruppa, Ras stacking his claim. Hmmm

    If you remember last year, the Wings would have been out of the Game early. This year close , tight games. Even out shooting, BJs. Pretty even shots per period.

    BJs are a tough team to out shot,Coach will bring out a different team in game 2. Beware Wings

    Good on faceoffs,
    Luke was 14-2 in face offs, great on the 4th line, try him on the 3rd line??
    Still hanging tough, I am happy Wings Fan!

    Of course in Canada, I didn’t see the Wings. I think they will be in tough, especially after Fabbri gets back. Need to replace Fil, Neilson maybe would create some offense and some better D Men.

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