Zetterberg scores in shootout, Red Wings beat Capitals

Detroit Red Wings left wing Tomas Tatar, center, is congratulated by left wing Henrik Zetterberg (40) after scoring during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Washington Capitals, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

DETROIT (AP) — Henrik Zetterberg scored a tiebreaking goal on Detroit’s fifth shootout attempt and then Petr Mrazek stopped Alex Ovechkin, sending the Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Saturday.

Detroit jumped to a 2-0 lead on goals by Fran Nielsen in the first period and Tomas Tatar in the second, but high-scoring Washington responded. Zach Sanford scored late in the second period and Daniel Winnik tied it with 4:48 left in the third.

Mrazek made 34 saves, including two on a power play with 6-plus minutes left in regulation and one early in overtime. Led by Mrazek, the last-place Red Wings avoided a season-long, six-game losing streak.

The Eastern Conference-leading Capitals had won six straight, but couldn’t overcome a league-wide trend for teams coming off a bye. Entering the weekend, teams were 3-9-2 in their first game after a five-day break.

Washington’s Braden Holtby stopped 21 shots. He had won his last 14 decisions, tied for the third-longest winning streak by a goaltender in a season.

As poorly as the Red Wings have played this season, they are a perfect 7-0 when games are decided in a shootout. And as good as Washington has been, it has won only one of six games that was extended past overtime.

Thomas Vanek opened the shootout with a goal, making him 5 for 5 in the tiebreaker in Detroit. T.J. Oshie followed and missed the net. With a chance to put the Red Wings up two, Nielsen failed to get the puck past Holtby. Evgeny Kuznetsov took advantage of the opportunity, scoring on Mrazek to make it 1-all in the shootout.

Detroit’s Andreas Athanasiou and Tatar were stopped by Holtby, giving Brett Connolly a chance to end the game. But he was stopped by Mrazek.

The crowd roared when Zetterberg went on the ice for a fifth opportunity and got even louder in the following seconds when he scored and Mrazek dropped Ovechkin to 0 for 3 in shootouts this season.

NOTES: Washington, which hadn’t played since Feb. 11, was without F Andre Burakovsky for a second straight game because of a hand injury. … Detroit D Mike Green, a former Capital, was scratched with an illness.


Capitals: Visit the New York Rangers on Sunday.

Red Wings: Visit Pittsburgh on Sunday.