It was a playoff atmosphere at the Joe Tuesday evening as the Detroit Red Wings hosted the St. Louis Blues for a nationally-televised division battle. Despite a special teams struggle, Detroit took the victory, using two quick third-period goals to come back from a 2-0 deficit to win, 3-2.
The Blues looked strong early on, following their game plan to try to win the special teams battle as they have in their two previous victories over the Wings. They forced the Detroit to take a couple of penalties and took advantage of the first one, as Matt D`Agostini got a piece of Kevin Shattenkirk's slapper from the point.
St. Louis took advantage of another penalty with a power goal from the team-leader in scoring, Alexander Steen. The second power-play goal of the night marked the second-straight game where the Blues scored two with the man advantage, beginning the climb out of the depths of the NHL's cellar in those regards.
Just before the end of the second period, though, the Red Wings used their own power-play time to get back within one with a Nicklas Lidstrom marker that came with 1:03 remaining in the period. That power-play goal was Detroit's first with the extra man in 12 tries.
The late goal sparked a momentum shift in the game with the Blues getting in their own penalty trouble and earning fewer chances in Detroit's zone. At the 11:19 mark of the third period, the streaking Pavel Datsyuk, who assisted on Lidstrom's goal, got a goal of his own, deflecting a soft shot from the point. Just 56 seconds later, Niklas Kronwall gave the Wings the lead and ultimately, the 3-2 win over the Blues to jump ahead of them in the Central Division standings.
Both teams played the previous night, taking home wins. While the Blues continued their improved power-play performance, the Wings have now scored goals under a minute apart in consecutive games. They might want to continue that trend going into their next game in Chicago, as they try to pull within one point of the division-leading Blackhawks.