The goal happened in open ice and plain sight, but afterward Brent Seabrook stood in front of his locker stall, looking down at his hands pantomiming a stick-handle movement as he sought words to describe accurately what had happened to him.

It was a short flurry in the Blackhawks' 3-1 Game 3 loss, but it underscored the frustrations of a defensive corps that figured it improved from its previous effort but wound up with nothing to show for it. Even if the mistakes were limited, they were made, and the Red Wings are pouncing all over them.

"He made a good play," Seabrook said of Gustav Nyquist's one-on-one moves that got the hosts on the board first at Joe Louis Arena. "I thought the puck was bouncing, I thought he'd stay on the wall and I could ride him out. But he made a nice play, a nice deke. Nice play."

So things got better and worse Monday, really, with two poor sequences from the blue-line crew spotlighted instead of the defensemen essentially creating the Hawks' lone score and, overall, believing they played a solid game throughout.

When an outlet pass sailed over Nick Leddy's head and Seabrook guessed slightly wrong on Nyquist's approach, it turned into a goal. When Michal Rozsival failed to complete an outlet pass from his own zone, it precipitated a sequence that saw the Red Wings' Drew Miller crash the crease for the game's second goal.

A group that saw its top two pairs combine for a minus-8 rating in Game 2 wasn't as flummoxed this time around. It just wasn't let off the hook when it was.

"This is a game of mistakes," Rozsival said. "The more chances you give them, the more mistakes you make, the better chance they have to score.

"They have a good skill group and you want to take their time and space away and try to keep their gap tight. That's what we're trying to do. Obviously there will be a time or parts of the game where you're not going to be perfect all the time."