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Red Wings' Franzen scores with 1:39 left in OT in 1-0 win over Predators

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

DETROIT - Johan Franzen celebrated Gordie Howe's birthday by breaking one of the Hall of Famer's records.

Franzen scored with 1:39 left in overtime to give the NHL-leading Detroit Red Wings a 1-0 win over the Nashville Predators on Sunday. It was Franzen's sixth game-winner of the month, passing the previous franchise record held by Howe and Henrik Zetterberg.

The Red Wings celebrated Howe's 80th birthday with a ceremony before the game. He actually turns 80 on Monday.

"I had no idea. It's probably the only record I'm going to break," Franzen said. "I'm sorry I had to spoil his birthday. It was the last day I could do it, too."

Franzen now has 14 goals and four assists in his last 13 games.

Dominik Hasek, returning after missing two games because of the flu, stopped 22 shots for his 81st career shutout.

He stopped Ryan Suter on a breakaway about 1:40 into the extra period.

"I hesitated at first," Hasek said. "I was thinking about poke-checking him at the blue-line but then I changed decision and was waiting patiently on him. I was in a great position, up high and out of the crease. He hit my blocker."

Franzen's goal also ended the franchise-record 233 minute, 39 second shutout streak of Nashville goalie Dan Ellis, who finished with 35 saves. It is also the fifth longest shutout streak in the modern era.

"It was good," Ellis said. "Right now, we're at a point where you put all of your personal stuff aside."

Ellis stopped Henrik Zetterberg's original shot, but Franzen was able to get just enough of the rebound and bounce it off of Suter and Ellis and into the net for his 26th goal.

"I didn't get all of it, and it touched something," Franzen said. "Maybe the defenceman and the goalie helped. When he tried to save it, he pushed it in. It was a lucky break, I guess."

Suter described it from his vantage point.

"I don't know how it got there," he said. "He whiffed on it and it came up and hit me in the hand and Elly (Ellis) on the pad.

Notes: Detroit was without D Brad Stuart (broken finger), RW Tomas Holmstrom (lower abdominal) and RW Mikael Samuelsson (groin). ... D Greg De Vries (upper body) and C David Legwand (foot) didn't play for Nashville.

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