Johan Franzen's five goals power Wings to victory
The Detroit News
Feb. 2, 2011
OTTAWA -- Johan Franzen had scored hat tricks before, scoring three goals three times in the playoffs.
But never in the regular season. Until Wednesday, that is.
And did Franzen ever break the ice.
Franzen scored five goals as the Red Wings defeated the Ottawa Senators in a wild game, 7-5.
Franzen's fourth goal was the difference, his second consecutive power play goal, at 7:10 of the third period breaking a 5-5 tie.
Franzen capped his historic evening with an empty-net goal (his 26th) at 19:26.
The five-goal game was the Wings' first since Sergei Fedorov did it Dec. 26,. 1996 against the Washington Capitals.
"Mule scored a ton of goals for us to get us through," coach Mike Babcock told FSN Detroit after the game.
Franzen scored twice in the first period and three times in the third. Franzen had a team-high 10 shots on goal in 18:28 of ice time.
"Very exciting, of course," Franzen said of the memorable evening. "Guys were setting me up all over the place. When it starts going in, it goes in."
The last Wings player to score four goals was Brendan Shanahan in March 2001.
Henrik Zetterberg, who set up Franzen three times, sensed this could be a big night for Franzen.
"When he got the first two quick, a few of us on the bench said this could be his night," Zetterberg said. "It's fun to see when everything goes in for him. He's a streaky goal scorer and we know that.
"That doesn't happen often (five goals in a game). It's cool to be part of it."
Kris Draper and Niklas Kronwall added the other Wings goals. Brian Rafalski and Nicklas Lidstrom each had two assists.
Jimmy Howard stopped 29 shots. But Howard and the defensive coverage in front of him have to be more tight.
"We didn't do a good job without the puck," Babcock said. "Everything we worked on for two days before and after the break, we have to keep working on.
"Anytime you're chasing the game and behind, the tendency is to open things up."
Wings players realize team defense remains an issue.
"It's not the best scenario," Zetterberg said of Ottawa responding after every Wings goal. "When we scored goals it would have been nice to have a few shifts without them scoring.
"In the long run you won't win a lot of games when you let in five goals. You have to keep it a little tighter."
Milan Michalek had two Ottawa goals, while Peter Regin, Chris Campoli, and Alexei Kovalev added the others. The Senators have lost eight straight.