"I think there's another level for this team," Pavelski said after scoring two goals in the San Jose Sharks' 6-3 victory over the Detroit Red Wings 6-3 Saturday night. "We will look to push it as we move forward."
Mikkel Boedker scored for the first time in 30 games to help the Sharks end a three-game slide.
"The difference in the game was they got the ball through and got enough tips and we didn't do a good enough job of our box outs and then getting sticks in there," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said.
"Down by two, we thought we were creating enough to get back into the game but they got off to a quick start in the third," Red Wings center Frans Nielsen said. "It's not a good game. We played a great game in Los Angeles and then can't follow up. We can't seem to put two games together. We have to find a way to put a streak together."
Athanasiou scored in back-to-back games for the first time since October and has five points in the two games since being benched.
"They buried a few rebounds," Athanasiou said. "They played good and they scored those quick goals in the third. We weren't playing smart. We were trying to send the puck into their zone and it just came back against us."
The Sharks scored three goals in a four-minute span late in the first period, erasing a 1-0 deficit. They also scored twice in the opening five minutes of the third before the Red Wings responded again.
"We haven't had many of those nights, so it was nice to score," Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. "Boedker getting one and Pav getting hot; hopefully that leads to more of the same. I thought Jonesy bounced back and gave us a great game."
Vanek gave the Red Wings the early lead, firing a puck that glanced off Justin Braun's skate and into the net.
Donskoi tied the score three minutes later, picking up a rebound. Mueller and Marleau followed, putting the Sharks ahead, 3-1.
Pavelski and Boedker scored in the third period to put the game away.
"You go with the flow," Sharks defender Brent Burns said. "Yeah, it's nice to score. But I felt like we were scoring in the Wild game. At the end of the day, you just want to win."
Red Wings D Danny DeKeyser took a puck to the jaw in the third period but appeared to be OK coming off the ice. ... Sharks D Marc-Edouard Vlasic went on injured reverse and missed his fourth straight after getting hit in the face with the puck and suffering nerve damage and a fracture. ... Vanek has scored three goals in two games and five in his last six. ... Marleau scored goals in back-to-back games for the first time this season. ... Pavelski recorded his 600th NHL point with his second goal.
Red Wings: At Chicago on Tuesday night in the sixth game of a season-high seven-game trip.
Sharks: At Edmonton on Tuesday night in the opener of a two-game trip to Alberta.