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game recap

Red Wings defeat Penguins with six goals

Detroit ends three-game losing streak; Pittsburgh drops third in row

by Dave Hogg / NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings scored three third-period goals to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-3 at Joe Louis Arena on Saturday.

Detroit (18-19-6) ended a three-game losing streak. Jared Coreau made 28 saves.

Pittsburgh (26-11-5) led 2-0 and 3-2 before losing its third straight in regulation for the first time since losing four straight from Dec. 14-18, 2015.

"We didn't play the right way again; we are trying to outscore teams instead of outplaying them," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "When we do that, we are an ordinary team."

 

WATCH: All Penguins vs. Red Wings highlights

 

Marc-Andre Fleury made 28 saves but allowed three goals in each of the final two periods.

Andreas Athanasiou gave Detroit a 4-3 lead 1:46 into the third period. He took the puck from behind the Red Wings net and beat three Penguins defenders before putting a wrist shot over Fleury.

"That's definitely a feel-good moment," Athanasiou said. "I saw the open ice, so I took it. Coming over the blue line, I decided to take a chance and it worked out."

Sullivan saw the goal as a microcosm of the Penguins' performance.

"That goal isn't all on the defense, because we had a chance to get to him further up the ice and we didn't do it," he said. "We have to make a commitment to make those plays. Right now, that isn't happening."

Pittsburgh had a tying goal overturned for goaltender interference after a coach's challenge at 5:09. Detroit made it 5-3 on Mike Green's power-play goal at 11:51, and Henrik Zetterberg scored for a 6-3 lead at 13:14.

Video: PIT@DET: Green buries a PPG through traffic in front

The Penguins took a 1-0 lead 27 seconds into the first period when Kris Letang beat Coreau with a wrist shot from above the right faceoff circle.

"It's not an easy start for a young goalie or the team when you give up one quick like that," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "It shows his maturation that he settled down after that and made some big saves at big moments."

Letang limped off the ice a few shifts later after getting tangled up with Red Wings forward Thomas Vanek. The defenseman returned for one shift and left the game. Sullivan didn't have an update on his condition.

Evgeni Malkin gave the Penguins a 2-0 lead at 3:51 of the second period.

Gustav Nyquist scored for the second straight game at 9:01, beating Fleury with a slap shot for his sixth goal to make it 2-1. Vanek made it 2-2 at 13:28, batting a loose puck over Fleury.

Video: PIT@DET: Nyquist scores off fortunate deflection

Matt Cullen put Pittsburgh in front 3-2 with a power-play goal at 17:56, although it was Detroit defenseman Jonathan Ericsson who knocked the puck past Coreau.

Frans Nielsen made it 3-3 at 19:06, tipping in Green's long pass.

 

Goal of the game

Athanasiou collected the puck in his end, circled behind the net, evaded Malkin in the neutral zone, slipped between Carl Hagelin and Justin Schultz inside the Pittsburgh blue line, and flipped a shot over Fleury.

Video: PIT@DET: Athanasiou goes end-to-end for gorgeous goal

 

Save of the game

With Pittsburgh leading 1-0 in the first period, Vanek's pass through the slot gave Luke Glendening an open shot, but Fleury slid across the crease to make a pad save.

Video: PIT@DET: Fleury stacks pads to rob Glendening

 

Highlight of the game

Green scored in the third period, but his best play was the pass to set up Vanek's goal that tied the game. As the defenseman prepared to shoot from the point, he saw his teammate breaking to the net and made a quick adjustment to fire a low pass that Vanek tipped in from the edge of the crease.

Video: PIT@DET: Vanek reaches to chip home a rebound

 

Unsung moment of the game

Pittsburgh forward Phil Kessel helped the officials call a penalty on Detroit midway through the second period (10:38). The Red Wings had six skaters in the defensive zone, but neither referee appeared to notice until Kessel pointed it out.

 

They said it

"That was a beautiful goal. He's always trying stuff like that, and he's got a lot of skill, so he's fun to have on the team." -- Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg on Andreas Athanasiou's tiebreaking goal

"This isn't going to be my last memory of this place, because I'm going to forget all about this game." -- Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury on their final regular-season game at Joe Louis Arena. Fleury's last-second save on Nicklas Lidstrom preserved a 2-1 win in Game 7 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final here

 

Need to know

Malkin had at least one point in each of his six regular-season games at Joe Louis Arena (six goals, six assists). … Pittsburgh was 4-0-2 in its past six visits. … The Red Wings matched a season high with six goals (6-4 against the Anaheim Ducks on Dec. 17). … Vanek has four goals and four assists in his past five games. Athanasiou has four goals and three assists in the same span.

 

What's next

Penguins: Host the Washington Capitals on Monday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports, ROOT, NHL.TV)

Red Wings: Host the Montreal Canadiens on Monday (3 p.m. ET; RDS, SNE, FS-D, NHL.TV)

Video: Red Wings power past Pens with three goal 3rd period

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