NASHVILLE – Different night, different city, same hero.
Todd Bertuzzi scored in regulation and overtime for the second straight night, giving the Detroit Red Wings a 3-2 victory over Nashville on Saturday night.
Bertuzzi forced a turnover by Nashville’s David Legwand, split defenders Dan Hamhuis and Kevin Klein, then beat goalie Pekka Rinne to the glove side on a breakaway 24 seconds into the extra period. On Friday night, Bertuzzi scored in regulation and overtime in Detroit’s 3-2 home win over Anaheim.
“No. 1, we did turn the puck right over inside the blue line, but your support has to come from your offside ‘D,”‘ Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. “(Hamhuis) went for a skate, they pushed the puck up the middle, and Klein tried to get back, but that wasn’t really his man.”
After a scoreless first period, Bertuzzi scored the game’s first goal at 1:21 of the second period. Driving down the left side with Predators defenceman Ryan Suter covering him, Bertuzzi pulled up in the left circle into a spin move to his backhand that he slipped between Rinne’s pads.
“He’s such a big goaltender, I can’t beat him coming down the wing like that. He’s just too big,” Bertuzzi said of the six-foot-five Finn. “I was just trying to change the angle of attack and went for the backhand.”
Drew Miller doubled the Detroit lead at 11:37 of the second.
Pavel Datsyuk’s shot from the left side hit the crossbar, but Miller was posted in front and knocked the puck out of the air and into the goal. A brief video review confirmed the call that Miller did not deflect the puck with a high stick.
“It’s definitely nice to have some personal success,” Miller said. “The biggest thing was us getting the two points, it’s nice to get one on the road like this one.”
Nashville halved Detroit’s lead just over 3 minutes later on Ryan Jones’ power-play goal. Jones redirected Steve Sullivan’s slap shot from the left circle past Chris Osgood for his first of the season.
“Tonight, the pucks bounced a little my way,” Jones said. “I was fortunate to be out front and Sullivan made a great shot, and it went off my stick.”
Prior to Jones’ goal, Detroit had successfully killed 27 consecutive power plays. The Red Wings allowed just the one power-play goal against in Nashville’s four opportunities.
“I thought the penalty kill was outstanding, and even that goal, who cares, let’s just move on, I just thought we did a really good job,” Detroit coach Mike Babcock said.
Legwand drew the Predators even at 2 at 4:45 of the third period when the Detroit native took advantage of a bad Detroit line change and lifted a wrist shot high to the short side.
Osgood made 33 saves en route to his first victory since Nov. 5.
NOTES: After being struck with a slap shot from teammate Shea Weber in the first period, Nashville RW Jordin Tootoo left the game and did not return. The team said he sustained a lower-body injury. … Two of Miller’s three goals on the season and three of his four career goals have come against Nashville.