Pavel Datsyuk scores tie-breaking goal and adds assist in Red Wings' 3-1 win over Bruins
BOSTON -- The Detroit Red Wings erased a key short-handed situation early in the second period, then got their third winning streak of at least seven games this season.
Pavel Datsyuk scored the tiebreaking goal early in the third period, Chris Osgood made 22 saves and the Red Wings bottled up Boston over the final 30 minutes in a 3-1 win over the Bruins on Saturday night.
After Boston grabbed a 1-0 lead on Chuck Kobasew's team-leading 19th goal 7:52 into the game, the Bruins had an excellent chance to take control early in the second.
"I think that definitely gave us a little bit of a lift and some energy that pushed us through the second period," Osgood said.
On the go-ahead goal, Zetterberg came charging down the middle and fired a wrister that Tim Thomas stopped, but Datsyuk slipped the rebound past the goalie from the bottom of the left circle to make it 2-1.
Detroit held Boston to just a few shots on goal until Brian Rafalski added an insurance score on the power-play with 5:58 to play.
Henrik Zetterberg scored his team-leading 31st goal for Detroit.
The Red Wings, 2-0 winners at home against Colorado on Friday night, won a season-high nine straight from Oct. 18-Nov. 9, and also won seven in a row Nov. 27-Dec. 13.
"We had a game last night and I think that was in our legs from the beginning," Zetterberg said. "The longer the game went, the better we felt. We had more legs and had more energy to work in their end."
Thomas made 29 saves for Boston, which lost for just the second time in seven games.
"I thought for almost two-thirds of the game we played pretty well against them," Boston coach Claude Julien said. "The turning point in the game was that 5-on-3."
Rafalski beat Thomas with a slap shot from the point.
The Bruins scored first, when Kobasew completed a nice give-and-go with Glen Metropolit 7:52 into the opening period. Milan Lucic worked the puck out along the boards and fed a pass ahead to Kobasew, who collected the return from Metropolit and fired a wrist shot inside the left post from the right faceoff circle.
Boston beat Eastern Conference-leading Ottawa on the road Tuesday, but couldn't completed the sweep against the NHL's best team.
"They're first in the league for a reason," Kobasew said. "They play tough and they play smart."
Zetterberg fired a rising wrister over Thomas' right shoulder after Datsyuk won a faceoff at 15:04.
Thomas had a pair of solid stops before the goal, making a pad save on Zetterberg's shot from in close and a diving stop on Derek Meech's backhander from the edge of the crease.
Detroit got its NHL-leading 40th win, the 10th straight season with 40 or more. The Red Wings have scored at least two goals in 32 consecutive road games. ... Bruins LW Marco Sturm was back in action after missing Tuesday's game in Ottawa with the flu. ... Before the game, members of the 10th Mountain Division from Ft. Drum, NY received jerseys in the names of two missing/captured soldiers -- Sgt. Alex Jimenez from Lawrence, Mass. and Pfc. Byron Fouty of Detroit. ... Osgood entered with a league-best 1.88 goals against average. ... Injured Bruins C Patrice Bergeron, sidelined his 42nd straight game after suffering a concussion and broken nose on Oct. 27, entered the arena level with a medical test result in his arm and chatted briefly with Cam Neely.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
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