The Detroit Red Wings keep looking for players to break out of their shells and do some heavy duty scoring. That includes Johan Franzen, who had a game-winning goal Sunday night and hopefully will have several more before the NHL season ends.
It sounds like a broken record, because it is, but what’s been frustrating for the Red Wings this season is that so many potentially outstanding scorers, like Franzen, seem to be getting off to a slow start. Franzen is a little behind the pace of what he’s done in past scoring seasons, but he’s not alone in that respect.
Franzen had the game winner in the 3-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres with a wrist shot on the power play. The defense continues to play well and the Red Wings were happy to see Franzen and the offense pick up a few notches against a Buffalo team that is struggling at 5-19-1.
In 20 games so far this season, Franzen has six goals and seven assists. In 41 games during the 2012-13 strike-shortened season, he had 14 and goals and 17 assists. His best season with Detroit was 2008-09 with 72 games played for 34 goals and 25 assists. His assists total grew that season by 14 compared to the previous year.
Franzen is 33 and has been around long enough to know what he needs to do to get his offense going. He could still have his best season with the team since he joined the Red Wings for the 2005-06 campaign. That would be good news for Detroit. If anyone is going to have a huge season in scoring, it might as well be Franzen.