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NHL Playoffs 2011: Red Wings Suffer Another 1-Goal Loss At San Jose

The Red Wings went into San Jose this afternoon looking to even the series, but after another one-goal loss they are headed back to Detroit in a 2-0 hole. Like Game 1, their offense was pretty much nonexistent, and it took another exceptional effort by Jimmy Howard for this to even be close. Once the Red Wings finally played with a sense of urgency it was already too late, and San Jose won by a score of 2-1.

Only 4:54 into this game San Jose got the scoring started with an Ian White power-play goal. Unlike Game 1, which the Red Wings opened with a goal midway through the first, the Sharks jumped out in front and had all of the momentum on their side.

In the second period, thanks to some great saves by Howard, the score remained 1-0 in San Jose's favor. Detroit got outshot 19-9 in the second, and they put very little pressure on Antti Niemi.

In the third period, San Jose's Niclas Wallin scored 1:39 in on a shot that Howard tried to fight off, but the puck went over him and into the net. The goal followed an outstanding shift where the Sharks had a few scoring chances, and they capitalized by keeping the heat on Detroit to make this a two-goal game.

The Red Wings finally woke up in the last half of the period, starting with a Henrik Zetterberg power-play goal at the 13:58 mark. Detroit kept the pressure on since they needed another goal to tie things up, and Nicklas Lidstrom almost did score. His wrist shot bounced off the post, however, keeping the Sharks in front. The Sharks would remain in front throughout the duration of the game, as Detroit couldn't find an equalizer.

Just like last year, the Red Wings are now headed back to Detroit down 2-0 in their series against the Sharks. It's not time to panic just yet, but boy is it tough to feel good about the situation at hand. While the Wings lost by only one goal in each of the first two games, both times Howard had to play out of his mind for that to be the case. The offense is nowhere to be found for Detroit right now, and in general San Jose just seems to be outworking them. If the Red Wings don't wake up and play with some fire for 60 minutes on Wednesday, the offseason could be here much sooner than anybody anticipated.