Wings in Command

Really, it's hard to imagine that Chris Osgood is completely correct in his assessment.

``Just a little altercation that's over with now,'' the Detroit goalie insisted Sunday, a day after the Red Wings' 2-1 victory over the Dallas Stars was marred by an ugly ending.

But don't expect the fracas to be forgotten.

In the closing seconds of Game 2 of the Western Conference final, Osgood used the handle of his stick to poke Dallas' Mike Ribeiro, who responded from behind the net with a two-handed stick slash across the goalie's chest.

``He actually tries to do it. It's not like he accidentally hit me,'' Ribeiro said, defending himself Sunday after not being around for postgame interviews. ``He kind of was bent down, raised up and clipped me in the face.''

There was no word Sunday from the NHL about any suspensions resulting from the actions of both players. So it appears that Ribeiro and Osgood will both be on the ice Monday night for Game 3 when the best-of-seven series shifts to Dallas with the Red Wings holding a 2-0 lead.

Oddsmakers from have made Detroit -117 money line favorites (NHL Odds) for today's game, the over/under has been set at 5 goals (Matchup). Current public betting information shows that 65% of bets for this game have been placed on Detroit -117 (View NHL Bet Percentages). Bet this game.

Ribeiro said he was only retaliating.

``If he doesn't do that, I don't think I react, I have no reason to do what I did,'' Riberio said.

Osgood obviously disagreed, saying, ``By no means was I trying to hit him in the face with my stick.''

What can't be debated is that Dallas is already in a deep hole in its first conference final appearance since 2000. The Stars returned home with 2-0 series leads in each of the first two rounds of this year's playoffs, but wasn't able to duplicate that success against the top-seeded Red Wings.

Detroit will be going for a 3-0 series lead and its ninth straight win, which would be the franchise record for a single postseason. It would also be the longest in the NHL since Montreal won 11 in a row on way to winning the 1993 Stanley Cup.

``You're not going to rattle us. We've got too much experience for that,'' Detroit's Darren McCarty said.

While the stage appears set for things to get even more feisty when the series resumes, Mike Modano believes the Stars can't be focused on what happened at the end of Game 2.

``That's probably the most you're going to see of it (Saturday) night, hopefully,'' Modano said. ``They're not a very physical team by any means, but they do play the game. ... And for us to try to get into some street fight ain't going to work. You have to play the game of hockey and right now, they're doing it better than us.''

The Red Wings did so in Game 2 without Johan Franzen, who was scratched from the lineup because of concussion-like symptoms. He's had recurring headaches since early in the previous series, and will miss Game 3 as well.

``It caught me by surprise,'' coach Mike Babcock said. ``We'd love to have him. he's a good player. But we've got a good team and we can go on with or without him.''

Dallas Drake twisted his knee late in the third period of Game 2, but came back to skate another shift for the Red Wings.

Stars forward Jere Lehtinen left Game 2 with a leg injury, which coach Dave Tippett said was not sustained on the play when he was hit by teammate Brenden Morrow. The coach described Lehtinen's injury as ``just soft-tissue stuff'' and said the team would see how he feels at the Monday morning skate.

After three power-play goals in the 4-1 series opener, Detroit had only one in Game 2.

``We took a step forward in getting ourselves back into the competitive issues of the series last game, but it will still have to go up another step,'' Tippett said. ``I thought we had much better jump. Our legs looked like they were back to normal a little bit. Now we need some more execution.''

Dallas is back home for the first time since its four-overtime, nearly 5 1/2-hour series-clinching victory over San Jose that ended in the early morning hours last Monday.Bet this game.

Get real live customizable updates, public betting info from 6 online sports books, archived public betting info and much more by clicking here.

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Blackhawks vs. Panthers Prediction Are the Blackhawks a good bet to beat the Panthers tonight when the two clash at 7:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Stars vs. Sharks Prediction Will the Dallas Stars pull off the upset tonight as a home underdog versus the San Jose Sharks at 8:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Hosts still pushing for playoff spot   Maple Leafs rookie Auston Matthews snapped a seven-game goalless drought when he potted his 32nd marker of the season Saturday. Can Ontario’s darling carry that...
Thumbnail Laine, visitors aim to extend Minny's skid   A season that started so promisingly for the Wild is spinning out of control down the stretch. Can Bruce Boudreau’s troops find a way to right themselves...
Thumbnail Defending champs overcoming health issues Washington’s recent slide has provided a glimmer of hope for Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division race. But can the Pens avoid a letdown tonight against...

NHL Headlines

NHL Team Pages