"I think the goalie stole the game for us," said Nielsen, who scored the only goal in regulation for Detroit. "I don't think we've been perfect but we found a way to win."
That is what Mrazek found important.
"This was a huge win on the road for us," Mrazek said. "St. Louis is a very good team. You know in the first period we didn't play how we wanted to play but from that second half of the game, we were better."
In the shootout, St. Louis' first shooter, Alexander Steen, scored but then Vladimir Tarasenko, Kevin Shattenkirk, David Perron, Nail Yakupoc, Robby Fabbri, Patrick Burgland and Dmitrjij Jaskin all came up short.
"I still think we could have pulled off some more moves, some better moves to give us better scoring chances," Shattenkirk said. "We need to bury our chances."
"We played really well and had a lot of good stuff but we don't finish," St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We've got to look at what's working and what's not working. You've got to finish at the end of the day.
"We're scoring one goal and getting points. That's a hell of a feather in these guys' caps but you're going to have score goals in this league."
Fabbri was called for hooking with 19 seconds left but Detroit could not cash in. The Red Wings outshot the Blues 3-2 in the overtime.
"We found a way to grind it out," Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. "We had a big short-handed goal and it was big for us to get the two points."
The Blues and Red Wings have played to overtime in four of their last five meetings. The teams split their games last season with the road team winning each time.
The Blues scored first at 2:31 of the second period on a goal by Shattenkirk. The puck came to Shattenkirk after Berglund won a faceoff. Shattenkirk sent in a wrist shot and the puck deflected in off the skate of Nielsen.
Nielsen got it back for Detroit on a short-handed goal, tying the game 1-1 at 13:54. Helm got a loose puck at the top of the slot. He dropped the puck to the trailing Nielsen, who got around Shattenkirk and beat goalie Jake Allen with a backhand shot.
St. Louis outshot the Red Wings 14-4 in a scoreless first period. Mrazek made two standout saves in the period, thwarting the Blues, who had a 23-15 shot advantage after two periods.
"We've got to find a way to get wins," Allen said. "You're not going to win every single game in a shootout but that was a tough one tonight."
Detroit LW Thomas Vanek sat out the game with a lower-body injury. The Red Wings listed him as day to day. ... LW Justin Abdelkader was back for the Red Wings after missing the last two games with a lower-body injury. ... Lehtera was back in the lineup after missing four games with an upper-body injury sustained in a 3-2 win against the New York Rangers on Oct. 15. To make a roster spot for Lehtra, the Blues put Magnus Paajarvi on waivers. ... Former Blues D Barret Jackman dropped the ceremonial first puck. Jackman spent 14 years in the NHL, 13 with the Blues. He signed a one-day contract to retire a Blue on Oct. 4 at Scottrade Center. Jackman's first game as a Blue was in a Stanley Cup playoff game against the Detroit Red Wings on April 14, 2002.
Red Wings: Will play visiting Boston Bruins on Saturday.
Blues: Will play visiting Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.