With Pulkkinen's return, Joakim Andersson became a healthy scratch, joining Alexey Marchenko.
Wings coach Jeff Blashill said Pulkkinen would start on a line with Luke Glendening and Tomas Jurco.
"Luke is hard on the puck, Luke will go to the net, so depending on who else he’s with there, he’s got to continue to worry about his game and that’s making sure he’s on pucks and when he gets the puck shoot it in the net, so I think he’s got opportunities to do that," Blashill said. "I don’t think it matters who he plays with."
Pulkkinen knows it's going to take a little while to get back into real game shape, even though he's been able to skate and practice with the team for a while.
"That helps for sure but it's always different to play games," Pulkkinen said. "It's a different thing but it helps a little bit. You've been able to skate but not too much. Like I said before, I have to play simple and have short shifts and play hard."
Blashill said with Andersson sitting out and Drew Miller out with a knee injury, he would rely on Riley Sheahan, Justin Abdelkader, Darren Helm, Glendening and Dylan Larkin on the penalty kill.
Flyers goaltender Michal Neuvirth had just made a save on Tomas Jurco at 2:20 when Ryan White came in and targeted Jurco's head.
White was given a match penalty, which was served by Brayden Schenn. The match penalty means White will have to have either a phone or an in-person hearing with the league.
The Wings had a five-minute power play and managed five shots on goal but were unable to capitalize.
The Flyers got a power-play chance of their own when Danny DeKeyser was called for interference on Jakub Voracek at 16:09.
Petr Mrazek had to make two tough saves, the best on Schenn in the left circle as Mrazek was partially screened.
DETROIT 0, PHILADELPHIA 0
PENALTIES: 1. PHI, White (match, hit to the head), 2:20; 2. DET, DeKeyser (interference), 16:09.
SHOTS: Detroit 10, Philadelphia 11.
Larkin made two fantastic plays with his speed, once passing to Brendan Smith on the left side after Smith joined the rush. Smith couldn't get the shot off.
The other came when Larkin kept the puck in the zone and tried to backhand it but Neuvirth made the save, which left Larkin shaking his head.
At the other end, Mrazek had to make some spectacular saves as the Flyers started to carry the play.
Two of those saves came against Schenn, who was in close on the left side and had Sean Couturier with him.
Flyers defenseman Radko Gudas got a little rough with Pavel Datsyuk and was called for holding at 8:17.
Henrik Zetterberg hit the right post during the man-advantage.
Things got a little chippy after Gudas got out of the box and Evgeny Medvedev and Justin Abdelkader ended up with off-setting roughing penalties.
Mrazek made a nice glove save on Mark Streit at 11:24 which was followed at the other end by Neuvirth's save on Riley Sheahan, which went up over the top of the net.
Niklas Kronwall broke the scoreless tie with 1:35 left in the second as his shot hit Neuvirth's glove and went over and into the net.
The Flyers challenged the goal, believing that Helm had interfered with Neuvirth but after review, the goal stood.
Jonathan Ericsson and Pavel Datsyuk assisted.
DETROIT 1, PHILADELPHIA 0
SCORING: 1. DET, Kronwall (Ericsson, Datsyuk), 18:25.
PENALTIES: 1. PHI, Gudas (holding), 8:17; 2. PHI, Medvedev (roughing), 10:17; 3. DET, Abdelkader (roughing), 10:17.
SHOTS: Detroit 13 (23), Philadelphia 5 (16).
Claude Giroux scored his 13th goal of the season at 4:24, beating Mrazek stick-side on a nice pass from Jakub Voracek.
Giroux now has six goals and nine assists in 12 games against Detroit.
The Wings had a power play at 4:39 when Scott Laughton was called for hooking Zetterberg but again could not capitalize.
The Flyers then got a man-advantage chance at 7:13 when Kyle Quincey went to the box for interference.
The Wings killed that off but then got two quick penalties as Mike Green was called for delay of game at the 10-minute mark and Kronwall was called for tripping at 10:24, giving the Flyers 1:36 of 5-on-3.
Mrazek denied Voracek twice, once from the right circle with a glove flourish.
Datsyuk hit the crossbar with a backhand shot at 13:53.
Smith was called for hooking at 19:55.
The Flyers appeared to score the go-ahead goal with 1.6 seconds left when Shayne Gostisbehere's shot went in the net, but the referee ruled that Wayne Simmonds had interfered with Mrazek.
DETROIT 1, PHILADELPHIA 1
SCORING: 1. PHI, Giroux (Voracek, Simmonds), 4:24.
PENALTIES: 1. PHI, Laughton (hooking), 4:39; 2. DET, Quincey (interference), 7:13; 3. DET, Green (delay of game), 10:00; 4. DET, Kronwall (tripping), 10:24; 5. DET, Smith (hooking), 19:55; 6. PHI, Simmonds (goaltender interference), 19:58.
SHOTS: Detroit 4 (27), Philadelphia 14 (30).
The Red Wings had three shots, one by Abdelkader, one by Nyquist and one by Tatar.
The Flyers got one shot from Gostisbehere.
DETROIT 1, PHILADELPHIA 1
SHOTS: Detroit 3 (30), Philadelphia 1 (31).
It was the first shootout for the Wings since Dec. 18, a 4-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks.
Gustav Nyquist hit the crossbar, then Simmonds was stopped by Neuvirth.
Datsyuk and Giroux traded goals.
Then Neuvirth stopped Richards but Voracek beat Mrazek through the 5-hole.
PHILADELPHIA 2, DETROIT 1, SO