Helm’s 2 goals lift Red Wings over Devils

New Jersey Devils goalie Cory Schneider (35) blocks a shot by Detroit Red Wings center Darren Helm (43) as Devils defenseman Jon Merrill (7) defends during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Detroit, Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2014.

DETROIT (AP) — Darren Helm scored two goals, and the Detroit Red Wings held off the New Jersey Devils 3-1 on Wednesday night.

Helm’s unassisted tally with 4:25 left gave the Red Wings a two-goal cushion. Henrik Zetterberg had scored the go-ahead goal 1:24 earlier for Detroit, which got 15 saves from Jimmy Howard.

Cory Schneider made 25 saves for the Devils, whose lone goal was scored by Joe Whitney. He gave New Jersey a 1-0 lead with 4:23 remaining in the second period.

Whitney began the scoring off a takeaway. His shot went in over Howard’s left shoulder. Helm tied it 2:19 later with a wraparound goal.

Zetterberg redirected Niklas Kronwall’s shot past Schneider to give the Red Wings the lead for good.

Devils forward Steve Bernier was helped off the ice late in the game after being checked at center ice by Brendan Smith.

A New Year’s Eve game had been a Detroit tradition, but the Red Wings hosted one for the first time since 2011. They couldn’t do it last year because they hosted Toronto in the outdoor Winter Classic the following day.

NOTES: The Devils were without several regulars, including forwards Ryane Clowe (concussion), Jacob Josefson (illness), Martin Havlat (flu) and Stephen Gionta (hand), and defensemen Bryce Salvador (lower body) and Damon Severson (ankle). . Red Wings defenseman Jakub Kindl missed his second straight game with a sprained elbow. . Detroit played 10 of its 14 December games at home but will host only six times in January and February.


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