George Sipple, Detroit Free Press
5 p.m., FSD, 97.1 FM: Follow live as the Red Wings play their final game at Joe Louis Arena against New Jersey
Here we go!
It’s the final Detroit Red Wings game in Joe Louis Arena history. After this, the Wings will play their games at Little Caesars Arena, which opens this fall. They take on the New Jersey Devils in the regular season finale, and we’re all over the action on what is sure to be an emotional night for many involved.
Free Press sports writer George Sipple will provide live updates during the game, which begins at 5 p.m. and will air on Fox Sports Detroit.
7:38: The Wings add another goal. A power-play goal by Riley Sheahan. Came into the game with no goals. Leaves with two. 2:33 left to play. More appearances from our eight-legged friends.
7:37: “Oh, we’re halfway there…” Goosebumps with 3:14 left.
7:35: Really intense “Let’s Go Red Wings!” chants from the crowd. 3:44 left.
7:32: Darren Helm in the penalty box at 14:14 of the third period.
7:29: Fans are in a singing along to Joe classics. 6:02 left. Soak it all in.
7:24: 8:30 remaining in this game and it’s starting to really sink in. Last moments of hockey at the Joe. 🙁
7:16: Another octopus is tossed on the ice.
7:12: The crowd is having a blast. The “Wave” has broken out at Joe Louis Arena.
7:07: The Devils nearly scored twice in a span of 14 seconds. John Moore scored at 1:15 of the third period. Taylor Hall appeared to score at 1:29. But Hall’s goal was reviewed and it was determined that the goal was kicked in and waved off.
7:00: Henrik Zetterberg has a goal, an assist and a team-high five shots in his 1,000th game. Gustav Nyquist has two assists. Dylan Larkin has won 6 of 9 draws. Final period coming up for Joe Louis Arena. And “The Final Countdown” is being played.
6:41: Big save by Jimmy Howard to keep the shutout going. 2:01 remaining in the second period.
6:40: NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman is being interviewed on FSD. Are people that are watching on TV booing?
6:39: The Wings have a three-goal cushion and have outshot the Devils, 24-13.
6:28: Dino Ciccarelli and Tomas Holmstrom take another spin on the ice with shovels. And Al Sobotka just twirled another gigantic octopus to the roar of the fans.
6:25: The Red Wings have taken a 3-0 lead on the Devils midway through the second period. Henrik Zetterberg, who already has an assist, scores his 17th goal of the season. The Wings have outshot the Devils, 20-9. Gustav Nyquist has assisted on two of the three goals scored tonight.
6:21: Nice. Former goaltending coach Jim Bedard was just part of the ice crew. Everyone wants to be part of the final game at the Joe in some way.
6:06: Second period begins.
6:01: Henrik Zetterberg won 3 of 4 draws in the first period and assisted on Tomas Tatar’s goal that gave the Wings a 2-0 lead. A great start for the captain in his 1,000th NHL game.
5:49: Red Wings lead 2-0 after the first period.
5:32: The Red Wings lead 2-0 at 11:19 of the first period. Tomas Tatar knocks in a rebound for his 25th goal of the season. Gustav Nyquist and Henrik Zetterberg assist on the goal.
5:23: The Red Wings take a 1-0 lead at 7:09 of the first period. And of course, it is Riley Sheahan who scores the goal. He hadn’t scored a goal this season, but avoids going 0-for-the-season. It’s his first goal since April 9, 2016. Frans Nielsen and Justin Abdelkader with the assists.
5:16: Red Wings on the power play 1:59 into the game. Ex-Plymouth Whaler F Stefan Noesen goes off for tripping.
5:13: Multiple octopi hit the ice.
5:11: Karen Newman is singing the anthem. Fans singing along with her. Playoff-like atmosphere for this game.
5:10: Steve Yzerman chant breaks out as he drops the puck before the game with other legends of Red Wings hockey.
5:07: Chris Ilitch presents Henrik Zetterberg with a Rolex for playing in his 1,000th game. Niklas Kronwall and Jusitn Abdelkader present a gift from the players for golf anywhere in the world.
5:05: Pre-game ceremony for Henrik Zetterberg.
4:58: The arena is already jam packed. This is an early-arriving crowd. Fans are definitely soaking up every second of the final game at the Joe.
4:43 p.m.: The crowd is piling into Joe Louis Arena. Look at this iconic shot of fans going up the Joe Louis Arena steps for the last time.