DETROIT -- Petr Mrazek made 23 saves in relief, and the Detroit Red Wings completed a three-goal comeback with a 6-5 shootout win against the Boston Bruins at Joe Louis Arena on Wednesday.
"That's a big two points," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "When you are down 4-1 after the first period, it is not easy to come back in this league. I think this says a lot about our guys."
After an unpleasant intermission, Detroit tied the game with three second-period goals.
WATCH: All Bruins vs. Red Wings highlights
"There were some words said, because you just can't look like that," Red Wings forward Gustav Nyquist said. "We knew it was a huge game against a team we are chasing, and we were really bad at the start."
The Bruins regained the lead late in the second period, but Nyquist made it 5-5 with 3:04 left in the third period.
"It was a collapse," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "I'm at a loss for words."
Thomas Vanek and Frans Nielsen scored in the shootout for Detroit (20-19-6), which won its third straight. The Red Wings trail the third-place Toronto Maple Leafs by four points in the Atlantic Division but have played three more games.
Video: BOS@DET: Nielsen roofs swift backhand for SO win
"If we want to be in the [Stanley Cup Playoff] race, we have to play 60 minutes every night, not 40," Red Wings forward Tomas Tatar said. "We battled, though, and we are very happy now."
Vanek and Brad Marchand each scored in the second round of the shootout before Nielsen beat Tuukka Rask and Frank Vatrano shot wide to end the game.
Rask made 20 saves for Boston (23-19-6).
"We were playing great hockey at both ends of the ice in the first period," said Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron, who had three points in the period. "We just stopped playing. You have to step on a team's throat in that spot, and we made mistakes and gave them momentum."
Video: BOS@DET: Vanek lifts puck over Rask in shootout
The Bruins dominated the opening shift of the game, creating multiple scoring chances before Vatrano scored at 44 seconds. Detroit got a power play 1:16 later, but Bergeron forced a turnover and Marchand set up Brandon Carlo for a shorthanded goal to make it 2-0 at 2:27.
Vatrano scored his second of the game on the power play, giving the Bruins a 3-0 lead at 8:50. Mrazek replaced Jared Coreau after the goal.
Dylan Larkin scored to make it 3-1 at 15:32, but Bergeron made it 4-1 at 19:02 with a power-play goal.
Xavier Ouellet made it 4-2 at 4:21 of the second with his second goal of the season, and Andreas Athanasiou scored off Vanek's drop pass to pull the Red Wings within 4-3 at 9:54.
Tatar tied the game 4-4 at 14:36, scoring on a breakaway after Carlo fell down at the blue line, but the Bruins took a 5-4 lead 21 seconds later on Adam McQuaid's first goal in 70 games.
The Bruins held the one-goal lead for almost 22 minutes.
"I thought we did a good job after they tied it, but we had one more breakdown at the end, and they took advantage," Marchand said.
Video: BOS@DET: Nyquist pots a redirect to tie game late
Goal of the game
After assisting on Boston's first two goals, Bergeron scored the fourth. Marchand passed to the point, and Bergeron tipped Torey Krug's shot past Mrazek.
Video: BOS@DET: Bergeron redirects Krug's blast for PPG
Save of the game
With the Red Wings trailing 3-1, Mrazek kicked out his right pad to knock away Austin Czarnik's one-timer from between the faceoff circles.
Video: BOS@DET: Mrazek turns away Czarnik with kick save
Highlight of the game
With Boston up 2-0 and on the power play, David Backes knocked a Red Wings clearing attempt out of the air, then took a pass from Ryan Spooner before touching the puck to Vatrano, who put a wrist shot over Coreau's shoulder for his second goal.
Video: BOS@DET: Vatrano snaps in PPG for second of period
Unsung moment of the game
Marchand had a breakaway in overtime, but Red Wings forward Anthony Mantha got back in time to keep him from getting a clean shot against Mrazek.
They said it
"I'm playing with two of the top guys in the NHL, so I'm going to do everything I can to stay on that line." -- Bruins forward Frank Vatrano, who scored twice in his first game with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand
"We're finding different ways to win, and that's what we are going to have to do to get into the playoffs." -- Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin
Video: BOS@DET: Larkin finishes Tatar's nice centering feed
Need to know
McQuaid's previous goal was against the Montreal Canadiens on Jan. 1, 2016. … It was Boston's final regular-season game at Joe Louis Arena. … Vanek has seven goals and seven assists in his past 12 games, including a seven-game point streak. He is 4-for-4 in shootout attempts this season. … Nielsen's shootout goal was his 44th in 87 attempts (50.6 percent).
Bruins: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN1, TVA Sports, NESN, CSN-CH, NHL.TV)
Red Wings: At the Buffalo Sabres on Friday (7 p.m. ET; MSG-B, FS-D, NHL.TV)
Video: Nielsen's SO goal propels Wings past Bruins, 6-5