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BUFFALO, N.Y. - Jimmy Howard made 27 saves, and the Detroit Red Wings stretched their winning streak to seven with a 4-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Friday night.

Jakub Kindl, Johan Franzen, and Valtteri Filppula scored first-period goals for Detroit (16-7-1), which last won seven in a row in March 2010. Pavel Datsyuk pushed the lead to 4-1 by scoring into an empty net with 1:17 left.

Howard, making his 17th straight start, was steady throughout. In the second period he robbed Jason Pominville, and then stopped Nathan Gerbe on a breakaway in the third.

Jochen Hecht spoiled Howard's shutout bid with 6:13 remaining.

Jhonas Enroth, making his ninth straight start in place of No. 1 goalie Ryan Miller, made 32 saves for the Sabres (13-11-1), who have lost three of four.

WILD 4, DEVILS 2

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) ? Minnesota scored three goals on its first four shots and sent New Jersey goalie Martin Brodeur to the bench in the first period of a win over the Devils.

Dany Heatley, Kyle Brodziak and Casey Wellman scored in a 3:03 span of the first to turn an early deficit into a 3-1 lead and knock Brodeur out of the game just 8:17 in.

Brodziak sealed the win with another goal in the third period. Niklas Backstrom made seven saves in the first period, and Josh Harding, who played the final two periods, stopped all 22 shots he faced for Minnesota.

Zach Parise had a goal and an assist, and Ilya Kovalchuk also scored for the Devils. Johan Hedberg made 11 saves in relief of Brodeur.

Minnesota (16-7-3) leads the NHL with 35 points.

BLACKHAWKS 5, ISLANDERS 4, SO

CHICAGO (AP) ??? Jonathan Toews scored the only goal in the shootout, after posting a short-handed goal and assist in regulation, and Chicago outlasted the New York Islanders.

Corey Crawford stopped New York's Frans Nielsen and Nino Niederreiter in the shootout. Matt Moulson, the final Islanders shooter, hit the post to end the game.

Andrew Brunette, rookie Ben Smith and Patrick Sharp also scored for the Blackhawks, who overcame a sluggish start and defensive breakdowns.

Niederreiter, a 19-year-old rookie, scored his first goal of the season midway through the third period to tie the game at 4-4.

Moulson and P.A. Parenteau both had a goal and an assist for the Islanders, whose two-game winning streak ended. Kyle Okposo also scored for New York, and Al Montoya made 32 saves in his fourth straight start.

Crawford stopped 37 of New York's season-high 41 shots.

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