The Detroit Red Wings set a new NHL record Tuesday night, winning their twenty-first home game in a row with a 3-1 victory over the Dallas Stars.
Detroit had tied the old record of twenty wins on Sunday night. That mark was set first by the 1929-30 Boston Bruins and tied by the 1975-76 Philadelphia Flyers.
Down 2-0 entering the third period, the Stars controlled play early in an effort to avert history. It wasn’t until Jiri Hudler scored with 4:49 left that the victory was secured.
Hudler’s goal came on a play that saw him sneak into the Dallas zone down the right side of the ice while the Stars’ defense was focused on Valtteri Filppula on the left wing. Filppula flipped a pass over the Hudler, who settled the puck and snapped a shot past goalie Kari Lehtonen.
Adam Burish would break the shutout with 33 seconds remaining, deflecting a pass from Michael Ryder past Detroit goalie Joey MacDonald with his skate. It wouldn’t be enough, however.
Detroit had opened the scoring at 7:57 of the first period on a power play. Zetterberg threw the puck to the front of the net from the bottom of the left faceoff circle and hit bounced right back to him. With Lehtonen having shifted to the middle of the crease, Zetterberg put it into the empty side of the net.
Just 1:18 later, Brad Stuart threaded a shot from the right wing boards through traffic and past Lehtonen to make it 2-0.
The Red Wings would finish the period having put twenty shots on net to Dallas’ ten. The scoreless second period was much more even but still saw Detroit outshoot the Stars, 11-6. Even in a third period that saw Dallas carry much of the play, they managed only five shots to Detroit’s six.
In all, Lehtonen made 34 saves on Detroit’s 37 chances. MacDonald stopped twenty of the 21 shots he faced.
Zetterberg’s goal was the only power play tally on the night. Detroit had five tries with the extra attacker while the Stars had two.
The Red Wings will get the chance to extend their streak on Friday when they host the Nashville Predators.
The Red Wings were without goalie Jimmy Howard and forward Danny Cleary, both of whom expect to return from injury on Sunday against the San Jose Sharks… Mike Commodore was the healthy scratch on defense.