The Red Wings started Wednesday night’s game against the Nashville Predators the way they ended Monday night’s loss to the San Jose Sharks.
That wasn’t good and the result was another loss, a 3-2 setback on Wednesday night at Joe Louis Arena.
“I thought they were better than us at the start tonight, for sure. We weren’t skating, they were on top of us, we spotted them a two-goal lead,” Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. “Then in the second and third we started to play and we came with a real push but we say it lots, catch-up hockey is losing hockey. You don’t get prepared, you don’t start on time, you don’t skate, you’re not going to be very good.”
It was the Red Wings’ third straight loss.
“This one, the first half we weren’t good enough and that’s what we’ve got to change,” Henrik Zetterberg said. “We’ve got to play better for 60 minutes.”
Pavel Datsyuk had a goal and an assist and Johan Franzen also scored for Detroit. Jimmy Howard made 21 saves.
Nashville goalie Anders Lindback made 35 saves.
The Predators opened the scoring with 32 seconds left in the first period on Colin Wilson’s goal. He tapped Cal O’Reilly’s pass into an empty net from in front. The play was the result of Franzen’s turnover just inside the Predators’ blue line.
Nashville outshot Detroit 14-8 in the period.
“The first period we played the way we said we wanted to play and maybe caught them off guard,” Predators’ coach Barry Trotz said.
Martin Erat was credited with the goal that gave Nashville a 2-0 lead just 49 seconds into the second when the rebound of his shot bounced in off Red Wings defenseman Jonathan Ericsson.
The Predators’ Kevin Klein swept a rolling puck off the goal line behind Lindback with just over 11 minutes left in the middle period.
“I couldn’t see it from back at the blue line but talking to some of the guys in the locker room, they said he just got it out of there right before it crossed the line,” Lidstrom said. “We did have some bodies in there but we couldn’t get a stick on it.”
Datsyuk’s short-handed goal with 6:56 left in the second period cut the Predators’ lead to 2-1. He put in his own rebound by swatting the puck out of the air for his ninth goal.
Dumont gave Nashville a 3-1 lead with 5:23 left on a wrist shot from the right circle on a 2-on-1.
Franzen cut it to a goal with 1:33 remaining with his 13th of season.
Detroit sent rookie defenseman Jakub Kindl to its AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids for a two-week conditioning stint … Nashville veteran center David Legwand was born in Detroit.