"We played good defense tonight against a strong offense," said Detroit head coach Mike Babcock. "We were just overall competitive tonight and Howard was sharp."
After a scoreless first period that saw Schneider stop nine shots and Howard make 12 saves, Detroit took a 1-0 lead 8:37 into the second.
Todd Bertuzzi took a pass at the right blueline of Vancouver and skated into the zone. He found a seam in the defense with a cross-ice pass to Abdelkader, who snapped a shot home.
Just over two minutes later, Johan Franzen and Filppula worked a give-and-go with Filppula finishing the play with a shot from the low right side with 9:05 left in the second.
Vancouver appeared to get one in before the second period ended as a blast from the right circle by Cody Hodgson trickled past Howard, but time had expired before the puck crossed the line.
Howard finished the shutout by making five saves in the final period.
Howard has six shutouts in his career...Vancouver plays at Edmonton on Saturday...Detroit plays in Minnesota on Saturday...These teams split the four-game series last season.