AP Hockey Writer
DETROIT (AP) — Mike Green scored three times for his first hat trick and Darren Helm had two goals to help the Detroit Red Wings beat the Ottawa Senators 5-1 on Monday night in their last home opener at Joe Louis Arena.
Green scored twice in the first period and his third goal restored a three-goal lead with 6:36 left in the game. Helm scored on a breakaway in between Green’s goals in the first period and added a second goal with 2:56 left in the third.
Ryan Dzingel’s short-handed goal midway through the second period pulled the Senators within two goals.
Detroit’s Petr Mrazek made 13 of his 31 saves in the second period to keep a relatively comfortable cushion.
Andrew Hammond stopped 20 shots in his first start of the season for Ottawa.
The Red Wings are leaving the venue they have called home since the 1979-80 season next year for a new arena nearby. Red-and-white clad fans filed into the arena that has been the home of four of the franchise’s Stanley Cup-winning teams ready to celebrate and they weren’t disappointed.
After beginning the season with two losses, Detroit looked determined to start strong against the previously unbeaten Senators.
Detroit’s Jonathan Ericsson fired up the crowd by dropping his gloves and fighting Ottawa’s Dion Phaneuf less than 6 minutes into the game.
Green gave them plenty of reasons to cheer, too.
He entered the game with 120 goals in his career, which began during the 2005-06 season with the Washington Capitals and included a 31-goal season three years later. The Red Wings signed him last year and he had a relatively quiet season with seven goals and 28 assists.
NOTES: The Red Wings, playing their first home game since the death of Hall of Famer Gordie Howe, honored the man known as Mr. Hockey with a video tribute during the first break in the game. Fans were asked to stand and to hold up No. 9 signs that were on each seat before the game. The Red Wings also will wear a “9” on their jerseys. Behind each net, “Howe 9,” is painted in red. … Ottawa F Matt Puempel played for the first time this season, replacing Phil Varone in the lineup.
Senators: Host Arizona on Tuesday night.
Red Wings: Play Wednesday night at the New York Rangers.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.