Smith's goal came after he jumped up on the rush to receive a pass from Henrik Zetterberg, who had just beaten Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson to the puck to create a two-on-one down low in the Hawks zone.
The Red Wings entered the period trailing 1-0, but Damien Brunner tied it 2:40 into the second period with the Wings applying increased pressure. Brunner deflected Jakub Kindl's shot from the blueline, changing its direction just enough to beat Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford.
The goal completed an excellent shift for Brunner, who had just generated two chances as the Wings pinned the Hawks in their own zone.
Overall, the Wings have played much better than they did in Game 1, which they lost 4-1. Through two periods of Game 1, Detroit had been outshot 23-12. After 40 minutes of Game 2, they were outshooting the Blackhawks 20-13.
If the Wings hold their lead through the third period, they would take a series split back home to Detroit, where Game 3 is Monday night.