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game recap

Jimmy Howard, Red Wings shut out Sharks

Makes 30 saves; Detroit wins fourth straight

by Dave Hogg / NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- Jimmy Howard made 30 saves for the Detroit Red Wings in a 3-0 win against the San Jose Sharks at Joe Louis Arena on Saturday.

The Red Wings (4-2-0) have won four in a row since starting the season with road losses to the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning. The streak is Detroit's longest since winning four straight road games from Jan. 2-10, 2016.

Detroit has not allowed an even-strength goal in its past eight periods.

"I think we've taken a step forward as a team," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "We were good last night (a 5-3 win against the Nashville Predators), and I thought we were even better tonight."

Howard has allowed one goal in two starts this season, and has 23 NHL shutouts.

"It was great to hear the fans chanting my name, but I thought this was our most complete game of the year," he said. "I thought we executed really well tonight, especially on the penalty kill. That's a dangerous power play."

Video: SJS@DET: Howard stones Marleau from the circle

Gustav Nyquist scored twice one day after he scored his first of the season. Andreas Athanasiou scored a third-period goal, his first of the season.

Detroit played strong defense in the first period, holding San Jose to six shots despite having to kill two power plays. Jones made 11 of his 29 saves for the Sharks (3-3-0).

"The start was OK, but we needed to finish one of those early chances," San Jose forward Joe Pavelski said. "We let them hang around in the first period, and everything got away from us after that."

The Red Wings killed another penalty early in the second, then took a 1-0 lead at 4:14 when Nyquist finished a 2-on-1 with a wrist shot over Jones' left shoulder.

Nyquist made it 2-0 at 15:10 of the second period. Ryan Sproul forced a turnover in the Sharks zone and Nyquist beat Jones with a wrist shot under his left arm.

"We talked about their transition game before the game, and then we played right into their hands," Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. "We were late to everything, and when you are a step behind against that team, they will take advantage."

The Sharks almost scored at the end of the second period, but Logan Couture and Brent Burns each hit the post in the final three seconds.

Athanasiou gave the Red Wings a 3-0 lead at 6:05 of the third period, taking a cross-ice pass from Thomas Vanek with an open path to the net. He took a slap shot from the top of the left faceoff circle and beat Jones on the glove side.

Video: SJS@DET: Athanasiou extends Red Wings' lead

 

Goal of the game

Nyquist scored on two glove-side wrist shots in the second period, but the first was more impressive. A pass from Jonathan Ericsson set up a 2-on-1, and Nyquist used Vanek as a decoy before putting a hard shot under the crossbar.

Video: SJS@DET: Nyquist lights the lamp with a wrister

 

Save of the game

Howard didn't need as many tough saves as he did in a 2-1 win against the New York Rangers on Wednesday, but he did make one late in the third. With the San Jose net empty, Joe Thornton passed across the offensive zone for a Burns one-timer, but Howard slid across the crease and made the stop.

 

Highlight of the game

The Red Wings were protecting a 2-0 lead early in the third period when Detroit defenseman Mike Green turned himself into a goaltender. Howard was out of position after allowing a rebound, but Green dropped to his knees at the edge of the crease to block Thornton's shot.

 

Unsung moment of the game

Sproul got his second NHL point in his third game, stripping Matt Nieto to set up Nyquist's second goal. Sproul made his debut on April 13, 2014 against the St. Louis Blues but didn't play again until Friday. He had an assist on Justin Abdelkader's goal against Nashville.

Video: SJS@DET: Nyquist collects second goal of game

 

They said it

"I don't think guys are targeting me; I'm not even sure that's possible. They take the shots the game is giving them." -- Sharks goalie Martin Jones after giving up three glove-side goals

 

"It's nice to see the team play the way we did on a back to back. I thought we skated hard and we had a lot of energy." -- Red Wings forward Gustav Nyquist

 

Video: SJS@DET: Jones makes a glove save on Larkin

 

Need to know

This was the last regular-season game between the teams at Joe Louis Arena, where they have met in five playoff series. The Red Wings will move to Little Caesars Arena next season. … Howard was 0-5-3 at home against the Sharks. … Abdelkader was scratched with a lower-body injury and replaced by Athanasiou. Abdelkader is day to day. … The Sharks play their next three games at home after starting the season with five of six on the road.

 

What's next

Sharks: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

Red Wings: Host the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; FS-D, FS-CR, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Howard, Red Wings blank Sharks, 3-0

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