DETROIT – Todd Bertuzzi returned to the line-up Saturday afternoon just in time to help the Red Wings match a franchise record.
Bertuzzi scored two goals 48:11 apart, and the last of which being the game-winner in overtime to lead the Red Wings to a 3-2 win over conference rival Chicago.
The win was Detroit’s 14th straight on home ice, tying the franchise record set in 1965.
“We’re rolling at home, we’re doing things right, and we’re getting timely goals,” said Bertuzzi, who missed Thursday’s game to rest a few nagging injuries. “We’d like to bring a little bit more of that on the road, considering the handful coming up soon.”
Bertuzzi scored two goals 48:11 apart in the nationally broadcasted Saturday affair, first on a breakaway in the first period, and then the game-deciding goal on a rebound 4:21 into overtime. The Wings forward was able to knock in a rebound from Valtteri Filppula’s initial shot to end a comeback bid from the Blackhawks.
“I think we did a good job of holding onto the puck, me and Fil played a little bit of tic-tac down low,” Bertuzzi said of the game-winning play. “It was a good play by Fil getting it on net, I think there was a lot of movement so I ended up getting open in the slot, and it was nice for it to go in.”
Tomas Holmstrom also scored for the Wings, while Jimmy Howard made 25 saves to pick up his league-leading 25th win of the season.
Andrew Shaw scored the Blackhawks’ first goal of the night, taking advance of a puck that took a strange bounce off the end boards and evaded Howard behind the Wings’ goal.
“It was just a bad break,” captain Nicklas Lidstrom said of the goal. “I don’t know if it hit right where the Zamboni entrance is; it hit something right there, bounced over his stick or right by his stick. But I thought he battled back, and I thought he played well for us.”
In the closing moments of the third period, a point shot from Marian Hossa hit both of the captains before finding the back of the net. The shot first struck Lidstrom’s foot, then hit Jonathan Toews – giving the Blackhawks’ captain credit for the game-tying goal.
“The tying goal, they were playing 6-on-5, and Hossa got a shot through,” Lidstrom said. “I think it went off my skate and I don’t know if it hit anything else after that, but I know they were trying to get pucks at the net and I wasn’t able to block it.”
The Red Wings controlled play in the extra period before Bertuzzi scored his eighth goal of the season to get the Wings another home win.
After the game, Lidstrom tried to sum up the momentum swings.
“I think we came out with a good push, I thought we were handling the play in the first period,” the Wings’ captain said. “We got the two goals that we wanted, we wanted to get a lead, especially in this game, and they battled back. They came back with a strong push in the third, I thought they pushed us back in our zone so we couldn’t get much going, and they tied it up late, but it’s great to see Bert respond the way he did in overtime.”
The Wings will welcome Ryan Miller and the Buffalo Sabres to the Joe Monday night.
Game notes: Hossa, the former Wing, was named third star of the game. Datsyuk was the second star, while Bertuzzi took the first spot…Both Datsyuk and Ian White had assists on the Wings’ two goals in regulation…Monday is the Wings’ first Military Monday.