DETROIT When Kris Draper and Kirk Maltby go on the ice in a shorthanded situation, they take an interesting approach to matters.
Those are our power plays, and we get excited about that, the Red Wings Draper said.
The duo has excelled in shorthanded situations this season, combining for eight goals. Draper scored his fifth shorthanded goal Monday, helping the Wings to a 2-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.
The Wings lead the league with 14 shorthanded goals.
The No. 1 goal is to keep the puck out of our end and out of the net, Draper said. (But) we still feel we can create some offensive chances with our speed. Malts and I know we can use our speed to disrupt the flow of the other teams power play and yet we still feel we can get back.
Few things in hockey can change the momentum in a game like a shorthanded goal.
With Drapers 21 total goals this season, Coach Dave Lewis has come to expect something good even while the Wings are shorthanded.
Theyre not just killing penalties, theyre generating offense while shorthanded, Lewis said. Theyve capitalized. With the type of season Kris is having, were expecting him to bury his chances.
Draper scored against the Oilers after Maltby dug the puck out of the corner and found him alone near the top circle.
I let Malts do all the work, and I just sort of sat there and watched him, Draper said. He made a great pass. Malts and I feel we can create chances and not allow them (the opponent) anything defensively.
Fans at Joe Louis Arena have embraced backup goalie Manny Legace.
Legace heard chants of Manny, Manny after excellent saves in the first and third periods against the Oilers.
Unbelievable, especially in this town where they know so much about hockey, Legace said. It gives you a warm feeling.
Lewis still is considering giving goalie Marc Lamothe a start this week, while Curtis Joseph (sprained right ankle) is rehabilitating. Joseph has yet to return to the ice.
Lewis said Legace will get the start tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes. Lamothe might start Friday against St. Louis.
Forward Pavel Datsyuk and defenseman Jason Woolley were excused from Tuesdays practice.
Datsyuk felt ill and was told to stay home. Lewis said Woolley was sore, and trainers determined it was best to keep him off the ice. Both players are expected to play against the Coyotes.
... General Manager Ken Holland said he hasnt spoken to agent Rich Winter since Hasek ended his season because of an inflamed groin last week.
Holland said last week the Wings will get financial relief from Haseks $6 million salary.
... A reminder to ticket-holders: Tonights game starts at 7, 30 minutes earlier than usual, because of a national ESPN telecast.