DETROIT >> Henrik Zetterberg was feeling kind of down after the morning skate Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena.
A goal and an assist later in the evening after being reunited with on-again, off-again linemate Pavel Datsyuk helped change his confidence level at least for one game.
“I was obviously excited to be back with Pavel,” Zetterberg said. “It’s been awhile. It’s good when we get an opportunity to play together to produce. I have to give a lot of credit to Helmer being in front of the net on both of the goals. He really created a lot of space for us and gives us a lot of time.
“It was going pretty good with Abby and Gus too, but sometimes you just need a little change to get a different feel,” Zetterberg added. “It’s no surprise we like to play together, but we haven’t played together that much lately. Today was good when we got a chance we went out and scored some goals.”
It was Zetterberg’s first goal in 13 games and just his second in the last 28.
“I just think the big thing there is he scored a big goal and set up a big goal,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said after the team’s 3-2 come-from-behind win over the Carolina Hurricanes. “You know, everyone here takes responsibility for their play and as a coach you take responsibility when your team’s not ready. But we’re all in it together. So it doesn’t go on one guy and you’re not carrying the weight of the world around on your back. That makes no sense.”
Zetterberg called himself out Tuesday morning after the morning skate about his lack of production.
“This time of year I’m supposed to be there, score goals, put up points for my team,” he said. “I haven’t done that lately. That’s something I’m not happy about.
“I think I create chances, but some games I’m not,” he continued. “It’s kind of a new position for me, going this long, this time of the year is not common. You start to think too much. When you’re supposed to pass you shoot and vice versa. It’s going back to the basics and believing in yourself, believe in yourself and work hard. If you work hard the offense will come.”
Babcock said he had a talk with the Wings captain after hearing what he had said this morning.
“I mean, Z’s a good player and he’s a proud guy and wants to play well,” Babcock said. “He’s trying. I think as long as you’re putting the effort in things are going to turn of you. Sometimes it doesn’t go the way you want it, but if you do good things, as I always say, good things will happen. Good for Z tonight. We’re proud of him. He’s got to be proud of himself and now we have to get ready for the next game.”