This was only part of the plan. And frankly, this was the easy part.

So the Red Wings better not let themselves be fooled by the end result after Monday night's Game 4 overtime thriller against the Ducks. They won the game and tied the series. But while the effort certainly was better than in a deflating loss last weekend in Game 3, it won't be enough to beat the Ducks in a best-of-three beginning tonight at Honda Center.

After another cross-country flight Tuesday, that almost certainly was the message coach Mike Babcock planned to deliver to his team — behind closed doors and to the gathered media — before tonight's pivotal Game 5.

Sure, the Red Wings pelted Ducks goaltender Jonas Hiller in their last outing at Joe Louis Arena. And yes, they even managed to score a long-sought rebound goal or two, including Damien Brunner pocketing the overtime winner after Gustav Nyquist broke free on a partial breakaway.

But just as there's truth in numbers — 41 shots in regulation for the Red Wings in Game 4, and 49 in all — there's also some deception.

"When you look at this game, you look at the shots you'd think, 'Oh, geez, we dominated the game,'" Babcock said after the 3-2 victory. "But we gave up glorious chances — absolutely glorious chances — to Corey Perry and (Ryan Getzlaf.) We gave them the puck and let 'em walk in, and that can't happen."

Not if they intend on sticking around past Mother's Day, that is. And not if they're truly intent on sticking to their plan, limiting the opponents' chances in order to give themselves a chance. As we all know by now, these aren't the Red Wings of years past, blessed with a lethal power play and elite goal-scoring depth.

They've fooled themselves into thinking otherwise before, of course. As recently as last weekend, in fact, when — despite what they said — the Red Wings acted as if a big overtime win in Game 2 and a raucous home crowd awaiting in Detroit would help them seize control of this series, only to discover the Stanley Cup playoffs don't play like that.