Henrik Zetterberg scored three third-period goals for the first Detroit hat trick since 2008 and the Red Wings held off a comeback by the Anaheim Ducks for a 7-4 win Saturday night.
The Wings had taken a 2-1 lead into the game’s final frame before the teams combined for eight goals in twenty minutes.
“He kind of took over,” Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall said of Zetterberg. “He’s been playing really strong for us of late and he had some chances early. He stuck with it and he really came through when we needed him the most.”
Detroit lost three leads in the game after going up 2-0 in the first period.
Bobby Ryan tied the game at two just 3:47 into the third on a power play goal.
Pavel Datsyuk put the Wings out front again with a power play goal of their own at 5:17 only to have Joffrey Lupul tie it again 1:09 later.
Zetterberg’s first put the Wings up 4-3 at 9:10 but Ryan Getzlaf tied it on an Anaheim five-on-three with 5:33 remaining.
Zetterberg scored again to put Detroit up for good just 1:02 later, beating Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller with a fluttering slap shot from the top of the right circle.
Darren Helm snapped a shot from the left circle over Hiller’s shoulder to restore Detroit’s two-goal lead with 2:15 remaining.
Zetterberg completed the hat trick with an empty-net goal in the game’s final second.
Dan Cleary had opened the game’s scoring with 6:28 left in the first period, tipping a Niklas Kronwall shot past Hiller on a Detroit power play.
Brian Rafalski extended the lead with 44 seconds remaining in the first on another power play goal.
Corey Perry pulled the Ducks to within a goal in the second, taking a feed from Getzlaf after a Jonathan Ericsson giveaway in the Detroit end.
Wings goalie Jimmy Howard finished the night with 19 saves on 23 shots against in his third consecutive start. Hiller stopped 30 of the 36 Detroit chances he faced.
Detroit went three-for-six on the power play. Anaheim went two-for-four with one goal on a five-on-three.
The Red Wings are now off until Wednesday when they host the Dallas Stars.