Abdelkader, Zetterberg lift Red Wings over Flames
CALGARY, Alberta (AP) Justin Abdelkader got a second chance, and he made the most of it.
Abdelkader and Henrik Zetterberg each had a goal and an assist to lead the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night.
Riley Sheahan also scored for Detroit (22-10-9), which has won five of seven. The Red Wings have won two of the first three games on a six-game trip.
The trio of Zetterberg, Abdelkader and Gustav Nyquist helped Detroit to a 3-1 lead 2:03 into the third period. Moving the puck around smartly on the power play, Nyquist set up Abdelkader at the corner of the goal crease.
Staring at a wide open net, Abdelkader's initial shot rattled off the far post but it came right back to him and he buried his career-high 11th goal.
''I probably had more time to sit it down and take it easy but I don't know why, I just decided to one-time it,'' Abdelkader said, ''and luckily it came right back to me and I had a chance to put it in. So I can laugh about that one.''
Mason Raymond and Mikael Backlund scored for Calgary (21-17-3). The Flames are 3-2 on a six-game homestand.
The Flames reached the halfway point of the season in ninth place in the Western Conference, two points back of the second wild-card spot.
''It's tough in here right now,'' Flames captain Mark Giordano said. ''I thought a couple breaks go the other way and we at least get it to overtime. We have to take some positives out of that.''
Detroit is third in the Atlantic Division, one point behind Montreal.
The Red Wings took a 2-1 lead at 17:28 of the second period, shortly after killing their third consecutive minor penalty - and second to Abdelkader.
Zetterberg started the sequence by beating Sean Monahan on a faceoff deep in the Flames end. Detroit worked the puck around, and Zetterberg got it back on a pass from Abdelkader and beat Jonas Hiller.
For Zetterberg, playing in his 800th career game, that's 10 goals on the season - five of which have come in the last nine games.
''It's always nice to get goals nowadays. Obviously this game is a little bit more special,'' Zetterberg said. ''We played the way we wanted to and I think that's important. It was nice to see we bounced back after the Vancouver loss to win the last two games.''
Calgary cut the deficit to 3-2 on Backlund's short-handed goal at 5:13.
A goal by Paul Byron goal with 1:20 left was waved off because Red Wings goalie Petr Mrazek had his helmet knocked off when Ericsson pushed Curtis Glencross into him.
''I don't know if he would have got over and made the save or had a chance on it but that's obviously a tough break to happen at that time in the game,'' Giordano said. ''Unfortunately, it probably cost us a goal tonight.''
Calgary didn't take advantage of four power plays. Ranked 26th entering the game, the Flames' power play is 3 for 38 in its the last 11 games. Detroit entered ranked fourth in penalty killing.
''Our penalty kill was great tonight. We had some big kills,'' Abdelkader said. ''Whether it's penalty kill or power play, both of those can create equal momentum for you and that was no different tonight.''
Hiller entered halfway through the second period in relief of Karri Ramo. Making his first start since Dec. 16, Ramo only made it halfway through for the second game in a row.
Against the New York Rangers, Ramo was pulled after giving up four goals on 13 shots. This time, Ramo had 12 saves and was locked in a 1-1 tie when he was injured in a collision with teammate Raphael Diaz.
Racing out of the crease to dive and knock the puck away from Detroit forward Drew Miller, Ramo was kneed in the head by Diaz, who was chasing after Miller.
Ramo was helped off the ice and to the dressing room.
''We should have more news tomorrow,'' Flames coach Bob Hartley said. ''It's sad for Karri because he worked so hard. He got sick before Christmas, lost a start at that time and he battled back. He seemed ready for tonight's game.''
NOTES: The Flames were without leading scorer Jiri Hudler, who was a last-minute scratch to join his wife, who was about to give birth to their first child. ... The Red Wings were without forwards Johan Franzen (upper body) and Tomas Jurco (back). Daniel Cleary and Joakim Andersson returned after missing six games. ... The Flames activated Ladislav Smid (upper body) from the injured list but he didn't play. Rookie C Markus Granlund and D Corey Potter were returned to Adirondack (AHL).