He wasn't about to let the six-year-old expansion team send the Detroit Red Wings into a losing streak. Hasek made 27 saves Wednesday for his 73rd NHL shutout to lead the Red Wings to a 5-0 victory over the Blue Jackets. It was a good bounce-back effort for Hasek, who was lifted after allowing three first-period goals in a 4-3 loss on Monday night in Columbus.
"We know we're a better team," he said. "And if you want to be a contender, a top team in the NHL, you can't lose two games in a row to a team like Columbus."
Hasek's league-leading fifth shutout of the season moved him into 10th place on the career list, one spot ahead of Lorne Chabot.
Dan Cleary scored twice, giving him 13 on the season - his total for the past three seasons combined. Nicklas Lidstrom added a goal and an assist for Detroit, and Kirk Maltby and Jason Williams also scored.
Cleary has six goals and seven assists in his last 10 games. He passed Henrik Zetterberg for the team lead in goals and all but one of his 24 points have come in a 20-game span.
In his past three NHL seasons, with Phoenix, Edmonton, and Detroit, Cleary had 13 goals in 202 games.
"I've just been getting an unbelievable opportunity, playing with players like (Robert) Lang, (Jason) Williams, and power play ... being in the right spot at the right time now," he said. "I've just got to keep my head down and work hard. That's all I keep telling myself, go to the net and try to shoot the puck as much as you can."
Detroit led 2-0 after the first period on Cleary's two goals.
His first came at 5:46 when he tipped Mathieu Schneider's shot past Fredrik Norrena with the teams playing 4-on-4. Cleary added a power-play goal with 9:42 left in the period when he tipped in a shot by Lidstrom.
"They got the first two goals and it seemed like they were playing with a lot of momentum and confidence," Columbus defenceman Adam Foote said. "They really wanted it and we were watching."
Maltby made it 3-0 at 6:15 of the second period when he jumped on a turnover by Aaron Johnson at the top of the right circle in the Columbus zone, skated in and beat Norrena for his first of the season.
"Definitely, it's nice to get that first one out of the way," Maltby said. "Over the last probably dozen or so games, I've had lots of opportunities, to either score or set one up."
Lidstrom scored a power-play goal with 8:58 left in the frame on a slap shot from the point.
Columbus had an apparent goal waved off 8:52 into the second period because Alexander Svitov kicked the puck into the net.
Williams added a goal at 4:38 of the third period, sending Norrena to the bench in favour of Ty Conklin.
"They scored on their chances and we didn't," Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We didn't show the energy, some guys, that we've shown in the past."
Notes: Foote returned after missing four games with a hamstring injury. ... Detroit RW Mikael Samuelsson missed his second game with an injured groin. ... Schneider stretched his point streak to 11 games (2 goals, 12 assists). ... Maltby scored his first regular-season goal since March 27. ... Detroit Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski attended the game.