Defenseman Brian Rafalski returned to the Detroit lineup Wednesday night, helping the Red Wings earn a 4-1 win over the St. Louis Blues by scoring a goal.
Pavel Datsyuk also scored twice and Johan Franzen has a goal. Erik Johnson was the lone scorer for the Blues.
Datsyuk opened the game’s scoring 5:28 into the first period. Tomas Kopecky fired a shot on net from the right faceoff circle, which former Red Wing goalie Manny Legace kicked aside. Datsyuk got to the puck, though, and threw a bad-angle shot back out front, deflecting off the stick of Brad Boyes and into the net.
Johnson would tie the game on a St. Louis power play with 1:33 left in the period, firing a shot from the blue line that was tipped by Detroit blueliner Andreas Lilja and bounced off of Dominik Hasek before finding its way in.
Franzen put the Wings back out in front midway through the second period, banging in a bouncing rebound as he fell to the ice from the front of the net at 9:48.
Rafalski gave Detroit a two goal lead at 6:11 of the third. He gained the St. Louis zone and slowed up to let trailing players catch up with the play, then snapped a shot on net that surprised Legace and went over his shoulder before he could react.
Datsyuk’s second of the night wrapped things up as he scored into the empty net after a takeaway in the neutral zone.
The Blues scored the game’s only power play goal on one of their three chances with the extra attacker. The Red Wings were scoreless in four tries.
Hasek made 18 saves on 19 shots in his third start in a row while Legace stoppped 28 of the 31 shots he faced.