NHL Game Summary - Atlanta at Detroit
(Wednesday, December 31st)
Final Score: Detroit 6, Atlanta 5 (OT)
Detroit, MI (Sports Network) - Henrik Zetterberg's second goal of the game 2:24 into overtime lifted the Detroit Red Wings to a 6-5 win over the Atlanta Thrashers at Joe Louis Arena.
Zetterberg also had an assist, while Brendan Shanahan, Mathieu Schneider and Ray Whitney had a goal and an assist as Detroit improved to 8-2-1-1 in its last 12 games. Tomas Holmstrom scored and Curtis Joseph made 22 saves in the win.
Ilya Kovalchuk posted a goal and two assists for Atlanta, which suffered its third straight loss. Zdenek Blatny, Ronald Petrovicky, Slava Kozlov and Daniel Tjarnqvist each lit the lamp for the Thrashers. Pasi Nurminen was peppered with 44 shots and stopped 38 of them.
With the score tied at five apiece in the extra session, Whitney threaded a cross-ice pass to Zetterberg, who posted the game-winner with a one-timer high into the left side of the net.
The Thrashers fell to 0-5-0-2 lifetime versus Detroit, which is 9-0-1 in its last 10 games at home.
After a scoreless first period, the Red Wings struck first on Schneider's goal 32 seconds into the second. Schneider wristed the puck from the slot that Nurminen stopped. The defenseman then followed his own shot and snapped the rebound over the goaltender for a 1-0 lead.
The Red Wings quickly grabbed a two-goal edge on Holmstrom's tally at 2:04 of the period. Pavel Datsyuk's slap shot was turned away but Holmstrom was in front to backhand the puck past Nurminen.
Atlanta reached the scoreboard 3:38 into the second on Kozlov's 17th goal of the season. He wristed a laser from the right boards past a screened Joseph to make it 2-1.
Whitney's goal at 8:31 of the period staked the Red Wings to a 3-1 lead, but the Thrashers pulled within one courtesy of Petrovicky's marker at 11:07.
Blatny's first career goal, with 4:14 left in the second, evened the score. Kovalchuk skated in and had his shot denied. Blatny, however, was trailing and chipped the loose puck into the net.
Kovalchuk snapped a 3-3 tie with his 22nd goal of the season just 1:41 into the third period. Kovalchuk hustled through the Detroit zone, made a dash through the slot and beat Joseph low to the glove side.
Detroit forced a 4-4 tie on Zetterberg's power-play goal at 5:45 of the third. Datsyuk left a nice drop pass in the slot for Zetterberg, whose one-timer soared over Nurminen's right shoulder.
Shanahan's goal at the 8:31 mark gave the Red Wings a brief lead, but the Thrashers tied it again on Tjarnqvist's tally at 12:58. Tjarnqvist wristed a shot that caromed off two Detroit players before finding the back of the net.
Detroit snapped an 0-for-22 slump with the man advantage by finishing 1-for-4 with the man advantage...Shanahan has 16 goals this season and 549 for his career, moving him into 18th on the all-time list...Atlanta is 7-8-1-2 on the road this season, while Detroit is 15-3-1-0 as the host...Prior to the game, Atlanta acquired forward Jean-Luc Grand-Pierre from Columbus for future considerations...The Thrashers placed forward Jeff Cowan on injured reserve, retroactive to December 30...Detroit defenseman Chris Chelios returned after missing 10 games with a knee injury...The Red Wings wore No. 37 patches during the game in memory of Atlanta forward Dan Snyder, who was killed in an auto accident on October 5...Datsyuk and Brett Hull added two assists apiece.
12/31 22:07:28 ET