A week ago tonight, the Red Wings won their 13th straight home game with a 3-2 shootout win against the Phoenix Coyotes. Tonight, the Red Wings won their fifth straight game with a 3-2 shootout win against the Phoenix Coyotes. It was the Wings' fifth 3-2 win in their last seven games, three coming via shootout and the other two being overtime winners.
Phoenix scored a couple minutes into the game and took a 1-0 lead into the second period, but it only lasted for 1:36 then, as Ian White knotted it up on a slap shot assisted on by Johan Franzen and Pavel Datsyuk. Ten minutes later, Todd Bertuzzi put the Wings up with his 10th goal of the season, assisted on by the same pair as the first goal. Datsyuk collected his 50th and 51st points of the year, the ninth straight season he has surpassed 50.
Unfortunately, Gilbert Brule tied the score only a few minutes after Bertuzzi's go-ahead goal, which was then followed up with a scoreless third to force OT.
In the overtime, the Red Wings had to kill off a Datsyuk penalty during the middle two minutes, so barring a Phoenix goal it was destined for a shootout. Once in the shootout, the Coyotes were only able to get off one good shot, which Howard turned away, while the other two never made it on net due to poor stick-handling.
Datsyuk went to the highlight reel bank on the Red Wings' first try, but couldn't lift the puck high enough over Mike Smith's mitt. After Hudler's futile attempt, Bertuzzi finished it off with his patented spin-o-rama that left Smith dizzy and sprawling on the ice in the opposite direction and Coyotes' announcers calling the big man Bertuzzi, "twinkle toes."
With the win, the Red Wings now have 63 points, which is good for first place in the NHL.
Their next game is on Saturday back at the Joe against the NHL's worst team, the Columbus Blue Jackets.
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