The Red Wings returned home Thursday night after their four-game road trip and played the Florida Panthers to a two-two tie in both teams’ final game before the All-Star Break.
Florida’s Viktor Kozlov scored with 12:30 remaining in the third period to force the tie.
Detroit had opened the scoring just past the midway point of the first period. Pavel Datsyuk beat Panthers’ netminder Roberto Luongo for his first goal since November 3, 2002, at 13:38 of the first.
Florida tied the game back up late in the opening period as Andreas Lilja beat the Red Wings’ Manny Legace with 47.2 second remaining.
The Red Wings regained the lead in the second period as Darren McCarty took a pass from Kris Draper and made a nifty move to beat Luongo at 9:39.
Both sides were scoreless for the rest of the game aside from Kozlov’s tying goal.
Legace stopped thirty-five of the thirty-seven shots he faced in net for Detroit, while Luongo turned aside thirty-three shots for the Panthers.
The Panthers were without defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh and left wing / defenseman Lance Ward, who were traded earlier in the day to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.
The Red Wings will return to action on Tuesday when Nashville visits Joe Louis Arena. Nicklas Lidstrom and Sergei Fedorov, along with coach Dave Lewis, will represent the Red Wings for the Western Conference in Sunday’s All-Star Game… Sandis Ozolinsh will still make his scheduled start for the Eastern Conference, despite having been traded to a Western Conference team.