By LARRY LAGE/AP Hockey Writer
DETROIT (AP) – Dylan Larkin and Frans Nielsen scored in the first two periods and the Detroit Red held off the Anaheim Ducks for a 2-1 win on Tuesday night.
Adam Henrique pulled Anaheim within a goal with 3:54 left in the game. The Ducks pulled John Gibson with a minute remaining in regulation to have an extra skater, but couldn’t score to extend the game.
The Red Wings skated off the ice with a sense of relief after blowing third-period goals in recent games.
The Ducks were dominant in the first, outshooting Detroit 16-5, and still trailed after Larkin scored off Kevin Bieksa’s giveaway in front of net with 6:28 left in the period.
Nielsen scored late in the second to put the Red Wings up 2-0 even though they were held to single digits in shots.
Detroit’s Jimmy Howard held up to intense pressure in the first period stopping 15 shots, and he finished with 32 saves. He kicked out his left leg to stop Corey Perry’s shot in front of the net on a power play midway through the third period.
Anaheim generated a lot of scoring chances and had two potential goals were waved off after video reviews, but could only score once.
John Gibson had 14 saves for the Ducks, who have lost five of seven to slip in the Pacific Division standings.
Detroit has won two straight, desperately hoping this is the beginning of a push to rally into a wild-card spot in the playoff race.
NOTES: Former Ducks C Dennis Rasmussen cleared waivers and chose to play in Europe. … Larkin’s goal gave him a team-high 43 points in 55 games, extended his point streak to four games and ended his third goal-scoring drought of at least eight games. … Howard won the 215th game of his career, moving past Tim Thomas for seven on the all-time list of NHL wins by an American-born goalie. Ryan Miller, the Ducks’ No. 2 goalie, is leads all U.S.-born active goaltenders with 365 victories and is third on the all-time list behind John Vanbiesbrouck (374) and Tom Barrasso (369). … The Ducks recalled D Marcus Pettersson from the AHL and he was scratched at Detroit.
Ducks: Play at Chicago on Thursday night, the second of a four-game road trip that includes stops in Minnesota and Las Vegas.
Red Wings: Visits Tampa Bay on Thursday.
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