Red Wings shut out at home by Hurricanes, 2-0; Mantha out
Dylan Larkin skates between New Jersey center Travis Zajac (19) and defenseman Damon Severson (28) during the first period of Sunday’s loss.
The Red Wings are offensively challenged to begin with, so the prospects of playing without leading-goal scorer Anthony Mantha seemed bleak.
That forecast was proven correct by Sunday night’s 2-0 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes at Little Caesars Arena. Mantha, who has 12 goals, left Saturday night’s 5-1 road loss to the New Jersey Devils early in the first period with a lower-body injury that will sideline him for at least a week.
“Definitely (missed Mantha) at the end there, his big shot,” Dylan Larkin said. “We didn’t have an offensive spark tonight, and Anthony, he’s been our best offensive player this year and is dangerous every time he’s on the ice, so we missed him.
“But can’t be something that we start to look at here as we don’t really know what his situation is like right now. We have to find ways, we have to find answers within our lineup right now. We gotta do it fast with a lot of games here coming here.”
The team plays four games in six days beginning with Wednesday night’s Thanksgiving Eve contest against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Little Caesars Arena.
Detroit, which has lost six straight (0-4-2), managed only 19 shots and a combined eight in the final two periods (five in the second and three in the third).
“We didn’t get out of our end well enough,” Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. “They forecheck hard and we know that. I thought we bogged ourselves down.”
Carolina goalie James Reimer, who got the shutout, made all of his toughest saves in the first period.
He made a point-blank stop on Valtteri Filppula a little under five minutes in, stopped Tyler Bertuzzi – who walked in from the bottom of the right circle – at 6:22 of the first period and thwarted Darren Helm’s shorthanded breakaway attempt with a little more than four minutes left in the opening period.
Filip Zadina, the Red Wings’ first-round pick in 2018 (sixth overall), was recalled from Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League to replace Mantha in the lineup.
Robby Fabbri moved up to replace Mantha at right wing on the first line with Dylan Larkin and Bertuzzi, and Zadina played right wing on the second line with Valtteri Filppula and Darren Helm.
Zadina had one shot and was minus-1 in 15:04 of ice time.
“I thought Z (Zadina) played well. I thought he came in and didn’t look out of place,” Blashill said. “I thought his first period was really good, and then, like the rest of the team, didn’t generate as much after that. But I thought he came in and didn’t look out of place.”
Sebastian Aho got the game-winner for the Hurricanes.
It came with 9:23 left in the second period. He put in the rebound of his attempted pass, from the high slot, which had gone off the boards behind the net and caromed into the crease. Aho raced in and poked it into the net before Jimmy Howard – who made 34 saves – could find and cover the puck.
Teuvo Teravainen added an empty-net, shorthanded goal with 1:13 left. Aho got the lone assist.
The Red Wings put defenseman Mike Green (upper-body injury) on the injured list to make room for Zadina on the roster.