- 2003–04 Detroit Red Wings season
Team=Detroit Red Wings
Joe Louis Arena
PointsLeader=Pavel Datsyuk (68)
PIMLeader=Brendan Shanahan (108)
The 2003–04 Detroit Red Wings season was the 78th
National Hockey Leagueseason in Detroit, Michigan. Despite multiple injuries to key players, the Wings found themselves once again winning the Presidents' Trophyfor having the best regular season record in the NHL, scoring 109 points. In the postseason, they advanced to the Western Conference Semi-Finals, where they were eliminated by the Calgary Flamesin six games.
Two Red Wings were named to the roster for the 2004 All Star Game: defenceman Nicklas Lidstrom and center
Pavel Datsyuk. Lidstrom was voted into his eighth appearance at the All-Star game by fans, and Datsyuk was selected to the roster for his first appearance. [ [http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=192050&hubname= Perreault, Selanne among all-stars] , tsn.ca, September 6, 2007]
The Red Wings sold out all 41 home games in 2003–04 as 20,066 fans packed Joe Louis Arena for every regular season and playoff game played in
Detroit's early exit from the 2002-03 Stanley Cup playoffs left
Curtis Josephto be heavily scrutinized by the media as to whether or not he was up to task to start for Detroit. During the subsequent offseason, Dominik Hasekshocked the hockey world when he announced he was coming out of retirement and fulfilling his contractual obligation to the Red Wings. Given their previous success with Hasek, the Red Wings welcomed him back to the team.
With the Wings appearing to favor Hasek as their starting goaltender, Joseph opted to have surgery to repair his ankle prior to the start of the season; resulting with the Red Wings using Hasek and
Manny Legaceas their goaltending tandem. When Joseph returned from injury and subsequent conditioning assignment in the minors, anger quickly grew on and off the ice between Hasek and Joseph. Detroit's General Manager Ken Hollandtried to move Joseph to alleviate the situation, but Holland wasn't able to find a trade or give Joseph up via the waiver wire because of his contract (the contract had two years remaining with an annual salary of $8 Million USD and included a no-trade clause, allowing Joseph to control who was was traded to.) Unable to continue holding three goaltenders on roster, Detroit elected to send Joseph to Detroit's minor league affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, on a permanent basis following a poor performance against the Washington Capitals.
While Hasek assumed the starting role, he didn't do so with ease. Hasek was not conditioned properly to handle the competition at the NHL level and was wrought with inconsistent play and injuries. By December 2003, both Hasek and Legace went down with injuries and Joseph was recalled from the minors along with
Joey MacDonald. While MacDonald was returned to the minors when Legace returned from injury, Hasek opted to remain on the injured reserve and did not return for the remainder of the season.
Joseph and Legace would find themselves in a platoon until Joseph injured his ankle in a contest against the
San Jose Sharks. The Red Wings recalled Marc Lamothefrom the Griffins to support Legace. Lamothe would appear in two games during his time with Detroit, making him the fifth goaltender to dress for Detroit and the fourth to play for them that season (MacDonald did not play in any games while on roster.) Lamothe was returned to the minors once Joseph returned from injury.
Despite being viewed by many as Detroit's "third" goaltender, Manny Legace ended up the
de factostarting goaltender for the season, leading the other goaltenders on the team in Games Played, Wins, and Shutouts(at the time, those were also career records for Legace.) Legace also had a better Save Percentageand Goals Against Averagethan either Hasek or Joseph. Based on his regular season play, Legace was named the starting goaltender going into the playoffs. During the opening round against the Nashville Predators, Legace won the first two games, but was pulled after the fourth game following consecutive 3-goal losses.
Joseph took over the starting duties and responded admirably, posting a .3 GAA, .977 Save Percentage, and one shutout for the remainder of the series. While Joseph had a strong performance against Calgary (1.83 GAA and .928 Save Percentage), Detroit suffered an offensive drought and, with the series tied at two games a piece, were shut out the final two games of the series, eliminating Detroit from the playoffs.
Joseph never appeared for the Wings again because the last year of his contract was nullified by the
2004-05 NHL Lockout. Instead, Joseph signed with the Phoenix Coyotesonce the lockout was resolved. Legace went on to assume the starting role for Detroit, but was released after the season following another disappointing playoff exit. Hasek appeared with the Ottawa Senators during the 2005-06 season, but returned to Detroit for what would be his last two seasons as a professional goaltender.
Record: 9–3–2–1; Home: 7–0–1–0; Road: 2–3–1–1
Record: 10–3–2–0; Home: 6–1–1–0; Road: 4–2–1–0
Western Conference Semifinals: vs. (6)
Calgary wins series 4–2
Awards and records
Trophies and awards
Presidents' Trophy: Detroit Red Wings
Frank J. Selke Trophy: Kris Draper
The Red Wings were involved in the following transactions during the 2003–04 season. [ [http://proicehockey.about.com/cs/2002freeagents/a/team_by_team_3.htm 2003 Who's In, Who's Out: NHL Roster Changes In The Summer of 2003] , proicehockey.about.com, accessed September 4, 2007]
Detroit's picks at the
2003 NHL Entry Draftin Nashville, Tennessee. The Red Wings were slated to pick 27th overall but traded their first pick to the Los Angeles Kings.
Grand Rapids Griffins
The Griffins were Detroit's top affiliate in the
American Hockey Leaguein 2003–04. Toledo Storm
The Storm were the Red Wings'
ECHLaffiliate for the 2003–04 season.
2003–04 NHL season
* Player stats: [http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/teams/stats?team=det Detroit Red Wings player stats] on espn.com
* Game log: [http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/teams/schedule?team=det Detroit Red Wings game log] on espn.com, [http://redwings.nhl.com/team/app?service=page&page=TeamSchedule&season=20032004 game log] on detroitredwings.com & [http://www.databasehockey.com/teams/teamscores.htm?tm=DET&yr=2003 game log] on databasehockey.com
* Team standings: [http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/standings NHL standings] on espn.com
hockey team player|no=2|name=Hatcher•hockey team player|no=3|name=Lilja•hockey team player|no=4|name=Rivers•hockey team player|no=5|name=Lidstrom•hockey team player|no=8|name=Fischer•hockey team player|no=15|name=Woolley•hockey team player|no=22|name=Myrvold•hockey team player|no=23|name=Schneider•hockey team player|no=24|name=Chelios•
hockey team player|no=11|name=Dandenault•hockey team player|no=13|name=Datsyuk•hockey team player|no=14|name=Shanahan•hockey team player|no=17|name=Hull•hockey team player|no=18|name=Maltby•hockey team player|no=19|name=Yzerman•hockey team player|no=20|name=Lang•hockey team player|no=21|name=Devereaux•hockey team player|no=25|name=McCarty•hockey team player|no=26|name=Hudler•hockey team player|no=27|name=Bootland•hockey team player|no=28|name=Miller•hockey team player|no=29|name=Williams•hockey team player|no=32|name=Thomas•hockey team player|no=33|name=Draper•hockey team player|no=38|name=Robinson•hockey team player|no=40|name=Zetterberg•hockey team player|no=41|name=Whitney•hockey team player|no=44|name=Mowers•hockey team player|no=52|name=Barnes •
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