The Detroit Red Wings played a smart road hockey game and came away with a 3-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks.
Detroit came out flying early and took the lead just 1:49 into the game on a goal by Henrik Zetterberg.
It took the Ducks some time to find their legs, but they controlled the flow in the middle part of the first period and evened the score on a goal by Emerson Etem at 13:48.
The game turned back in Detroit's favor in the final few minutes of the first period and Justin Abdelkader scored a shorthanded goal at 16:37 to give Detroit a lead they would never relinquish. Abdelkader intercepted a cross-ice pass at the Detroit blueline by Francois Beauchemin and he was off to the races and beat Jonas Hiller through the five-hole. Detroit held a 2-1 lead after one period.
The pace slowed in the second period and both teams had fewer scoring chances. Valtteri Filppula scored the only goal of the period at 13:45 and the Wings had a two-goal lead after 40 minutes.
Detroit kept the Ducks at bay for most of the third period and minimized Anaheim's rebounds and quality chances.
A bad penalty by Zetterberg at 16:14 led to a power-play goal by Beauchemin just 29 seconds later, but that was as close as the Ducks would get.
Jimmy Howard made 31 saves and earned Detroit a hard-fought victory.
The Red Wings advance to the second round of the playoffs where they will face the Chicago Blackhawks.
Red Wings 3, Ducks 2; FINAL SCORE
Detroit wins the series 4-3