By GREG BEACHAM/AP Sports Writer
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) – Gustav Nyquist’s power-play goal at 1:21 of overtime after the Red Wings blew a three-goal lead in the third period gave Detroit a 5-4 victory over the Anaheim Ducks to even their playoff series Thursday night.READ MORE: Three Killed, Including Safe Streets Worker, In East Baltimore Quadruple Shooting
Johan Franzen scored two goals and Damien Brunner had his first Stanley Cup playoff goal and two assists for the Red Wings, who survived a third-period collapse with a timely goal from Nyquist.
Bobby Ryan scored the tying goal with 2:22 left in regulation for the Ducks, who also got goals from captain Ryan Getzlaf and Kyle Palmieri while erasing Detroit’s 4-1 lead with a phenomenal surge in the final minutes.
Game 3 is Saturday night at Joe Louis Arena.
Jimmy Howard made 28 saves for Detroit, which silenced the Anaheim crowd with two goals in the first 4:20. Despite their third-period collapse, the Red Wings earned their third victory in four appearances at Honda Center this season.
Justin Abdelkader scored in the opening minute and Pavel Datsyuk had two assists for the Red Wings.
Jonas Hiller stopped 27 shots and Saku Koivu scored for the second-seeded Ducks, who struggled through the first two periods before rallying for a hair-raising third. Ryan and Palmieri both had a goal and an assist in the third, and Koivu added an assist.READ MORE: Closures & Delays: Maryland Schools, Government Offices & Businesses
But veteran Ducks defenseman Sheldon Souray took a slashing penalty in front of his net with 38 seconds left in regulation. Nyquist was left unchecked in the left faceoff circle for his goal with just 2 seconds remaining in the power play. The 23-year-old Swede from the University of Maine was in his sixth career playoff game.
Until the final period, Detroit had bounced back impressively from the Ducks’ 3-1 series-opening victory. Coach Mike Babcock put veteran Todd Bertuzzi in his lineup for the first time since Feb. 7, replacing Jordin Tootoo, but otherwise kept the same lineup – and the Wings responded with all the poise expected from a team with 22 straight playoff appearances.
Detroit was led by Franzen, the Swedish veteran nicknamed Mule. He scored a gritty power-play goal on a rebound early in the second period, and he came back from getting hit squarely below the belt by a shot at the second-period buzzer to score again early in the third.
While the Wings executed, the Ducks struggled until their electric third-period rally. Game 1 hero Teemu Selanne made an egregious turnover leading to Brunner’s goal, and Getzlaf passed up a breakaway shot in the third period for an ill-advised pass on a play that exemplified the Ducks’ struggles.
But the Ducks rallied when Getzlaf scored on a wicked backhand shot with his back to the net with 12:10 to play. Palmieri then scored his first career playoff goal moments after a power play ended, firing a short shot that Howard missed with his glove with 7:29 left.
Ryan nearly scored with 5 minutes to play, but his deflection in front just caught the outside post. He didn’t miss on his next chance when Cam Fowler found him driving to the net with a perfect pass for a quick shot past Howard, setting off a deafening celebration.
The Ducks attracted another large, towel-waving crowd to Honda Center after the festive atmosphere in their opener. But many fans weren’t yet in their seats when Abdelkader found space near the blue line and beat Hiller with a deceptive wrist shot that might have been tipped just 48 seconds into the game.MORE NEWS: Nets Hold Off Wizards' Rally, Beat Washington 119-118
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