|DET||1||1||1||(0 - 0)||3|
|FLA||0||2||0||(0 - 0)||2|
Facing teams from the Sunshine State appears to agree with the Detroit Red Wings' Chris Osgood.
After continuing his impressive winning streak against Tampa Bay, Osgood likely will be back in goal looking to extend run nearly as good on Friday night when the Red Wings meet the Florida Panthers.
On Thursday, Osgood made 15 saves to improve to an astounding 17-0-0 in his career against the Lightning, but needed some help late. Henrik Zetterberg, Mikael Samuelsson and Johan Franzen all scored in the third period of the 4-3 win.
"I think Ozzie would thank his teammates," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said after Osgood improved to 4-0-1 with a 2.94 goals-against average on the road this season. "Ozzie bails us out some nights, and we bailed him out tonight."
Osgood is 13-1-1 with five ties a 2.20 GAA in 21 career starts against the Panthers, and while he hasn't lost to them in regulation in nearly 12 years, he could find it easy to notch another win. Florida's 35 goals scored in 2008-09 are the second-fewest in the NHL behind Tampa Bay's 33.
The Red Wings - making their first appearance at the BankAtlantic Center since December 2005 - have won six of nine all-time meetings there, but come in after a pair of shaky performances. Prior to rallying from an early two-goal deficit against the Lightning, Detroit (10-2-3) blew a three-goal lead and lost 7-6 in overtime to Pittsburgh on Tuesday in a Stanley Cup finals rematch.
Franzen has two goals and an assist in those two games after missing five with a sprained knee ligament. Overall, he's got five goals and three assists in a six-game points streak.
Marian Hossa leads Detroit with 21 points, and comes in with a streak of three straight multipoint games, totaling two goals and four assists. He's also enjoyed the most success in his career against Florida. In 44 games, Hossa has 27 goals - including 11 on the power play and five game-winners - and his 53 points also are the most versus another club.
The Red Wings will be facing another hot goaltender in Craig Anderson, who earned his third straight start in place of Tomas Vokoun after turning aside 24 shots on Wednesday in a 4-0 win over the Lightning.
Anderson, who had 44 saves on Sunday in a victory over Anaheim, is 3-1-0 with a 1.85 GAA. Vokoun hasn't won in four starts since beating Western Conference-leading San Jose on Oct. 24, and is 3-7-0 with a 3.01 GAA.
"Anderson deserves to start again," said first-year Panthers coach Peter DeBoer. "He had a couple of outstanding games, and it's about winning hockey games. We all know what Tomas is capable of. This isn't about him or competition or who's the starter. We need wins right now, and Anderson's hot."
His only other start against the Red Wings came exactly five years ago. Playing for Chicago, Anderson made 22 saves in a 4-3 overtime loss.
Detroit native David Booth, who had a hat trick for Florida (6-8-1) against the Ducks among his team-high seven goals, has yet to face his hometown team.
|Nov 14 '08||DET 3 at FLA 2||J. Franzen|