Preseason recap: Red Wings beat Columbus 5-1: Leddy posts 3A, Larkin 2G 1A in return to action

The Detroit Red Wings x’ed the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-1 on Saturday night, beginning a stretch of 3 games played over the course of 3 days with their 3rd preseason win in 3 tries.

Nick Leddy had 3 assists, Dylan Larkin had 2 goals and an assist, Joe Veleno had a goal and an assist, Lucas Raymond had 2 assists, Moritz Seider finished at +2 in 19:06 played, Thomas Greiss stopped 8 shots and Calvin Pickard stopped 11 of 12 for Detroit.

Detroit continues its odyssey tomorrow vs. Pittsburgh at 12 PM EDT (TV/radio uncertain), and the Wings will then host the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday night (7:30 PM EDT ON Bally Sports Detroit).

Anyway, on Saturday night, only 1:16 into the 1st period, a Nick Leddy keep-in was passed along to Riley Barber, who ripped a top-shelf marker off goal-scoring-tipper Taro Hirose and into the top shelf behind Elvis Merzlikins at 1:16 of the 1st:

The Wings then went to the power play as Dean Kukan sat for a hold at 2:44, but the PP was enough to leave assistant coach Alex Tanguay red in the face (like the rest of us);

And Columbus slowly but surely gained momentum as the period continued, but the Wings held tough, and Chase Pearson scored the 2-0 goal @ 18:43, shoveling both the puck and a Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman into the net off a 2-on-1 rush:

To be very honest, the Raymond-Larkin-Zadina line was a flop early, but that was in no small part because 1) Dylan Larkin was far from 100% at anything other than physicality of play and chirping at the ref, at least early on; and 2) Columbus really targeted Raymond and Zadina physically, from the drop of the puck.

In the 2nd period, Detroit was lulled to sleep by Columbus after a good couple of shifts for the Raymond-Larkin-Zadina line, the Pearson line, and a couple of nice stops by Moritz Seider (of all goalies), and the game turned into a check-fest…

But the Red Wings woke up approximately 8 minutes in, and things got chippy between the superbly-skating teams (no offense to Columbus; they were tenacious with the puck and tenacious without), and by the time that Thomas Griess (who was wearing a new mask) sat approximately 11 minutes and 47 seconds into the 2nd period, he was nursing an 8-save shutout.

Dylan Larkin punctuated the 2nd period with a 3-0 goal some 14:33 into the period, taking a slithery pass from Nick Leddy and breaking away as Columbus made a poor neutral zone change, affording Larkin the ability to blaze in on Elvis Merzlikins and fire a shot over his blocker. Joe Veleno got the secondary assist via the faceoff win:

Detroit then took a penalty at 14:57 as Renouf sat for cross-checking, and, bafflingly, Filip Hronek was called for cross-checking at 16:17, despite Joe Veleno being boarded by Justin Danforth.

Thanks to some astute saves by Pickard and a fair amount of skating into the offensive zone by the Red Wings, pushing the puck away from their goaltender, Detroit exited the 2nd period with a 3-goal lead…

But not before Lucas Raymond got his first grade-A scoring chance off a faceoff play where Dylan Larkin worked the puck back to Filip Hronek, he fed the puck to Filip Zadina, and a gorgeous lateral pass yielded a slick one-timer from #23.

Nice combination between Hronek-Zadina-Raymond #LGRW— IcehockeyGifs (@IcehockeyG) October 3, 2021

The Wings’ “first line” finally got its sea legs as the 2nd period waned, and that was a relief as it was thoroughly mediocre through the first 30-or-so minutes’ worth of play.

In the 3rd period, Columbus got off to a very strong start, chasing Detroit into their own zone, and Columbus scored fairly easily off a faceoff win by Cole Cassels, with Carson Meyer crashing the net and chipping home the rebound of an Scott Harington shot.

The scoring was Meyer from Harrington and Cassels at 1:55 of the 3rd. Columbus trailed 3-1.

Columbus took a daffy tripping penalty on Kirill Tyutyayev as Tyler Sikura sat at 2:34, and Detroit did about as well on the power play as they have for most of the preseason…

Which is to say that they were not very good, despite strong efforts by Seider, Hronek, Leddy and Pearson.

The Wings regained their momentum as the 3rd period progressed, but 9:10 into the 3rd period, Detroit took a dumb penalty, with Tyler Spezia sitting for tripping;

Thankfully, the Red Wings’ PK got down to work, and Joe Veleno, Lucas Raymond and Chase Pearson all put in yeoman’s work on the PK;

Detroit was out-shot by a fair margin for the first half of the 3rd, finding themselves in a 7-1 shot deficit, but by the time Cole Cassels headed to the penalty box at 14:08 for boarding Riley Barber, the Wings narrowed the gap to 7-4.

On the power play, Joe Veleno received a lateral pass from Dylan Larkin, off a passing play from Nick Leddy to Lucas Raymond, and, bang bang, it was 4-1 at 14:44.

Lucas Raymond working the powerplay #LGRW— IcehockeyGifs (@IcehockeyG) October 3, 2021

Veleno from Larkin and Raymond.

After the 4-1 goal, Dylan Larkin got tripped by Jake Gaudet with only 2:41 remaining, and the Wings went to their fifth power play:

On said power play, Dylan Larkin scored a gorgeous goal off a fine pass from Lucas Raymond, firing a puck off the post and in as Joe Veleno pulled Merzlikins off the post.

Larkin scored from Raymond and Hirose at 18:45, PPG.

Columbus got a power play at 18:55 as Dennis Yan tried to start a fight, but received a, “No” from the Columbus Blue Jackets player, and Detroit killed all 1:05 of it, so Detroit prevailed 5-1.

Columbus did win the shootout 1-0, but that really doesn’t count. Nor does the game, technically.

Your final tonight 5-1 Detroit.
Larkin 2g 1a
Raymond 2a
Leddy 3a
Veleno 1g 1a
Hirose 1g 1a
Pearson 1g

3 PPG’s tonight.
Greiss played 1st half 0 goals allowed
Pickard played 2nd half. 1 goal allowed

Red Wings 3-0 in pre season take on Pitt noon tomorrow in Pittsburgh— Ken Kal (@KenKalDRW) October 3, 2021

Here are the Game Summary and Event Summary:

Joe Veleno spoke with Trevor Thompson post-game:

Also: Here are’s game highlights:

Update: Here are Sportsnet’s highlights:

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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.