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Mrazek stops 25 shots as Red Wings beat Sabres 3-1

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Petr Mrazek made 25 saves in his first start in place of injured starting goalie Jimmy Howard, and the Detroit Red Wings beat the Buffalo Sabres 3-1 on Tuesday night.

Darren Helm, Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Tatar scored for the Red Wings, who have won three of four. Kyle Quincey had two assists.

Mike Weber scored for the Sabres, who have lost eight straight. Michael Neuvirth had 27 saves.

The Sabres honored Hall of Fame goalie Dominik Hasek by retiring his No. 39 in a pregame ceremony. Hasek starred for Buffalo from 1992-01, winning six Vezina Trophies and consecutive Hart Memorial Trophies in 1997 and 1998, before being traded to Detroit, where he won Stanley Cups in 2002 and 2008.

Hasek’s number was painted behind both nets, and the goaltender matchup between Mrazek and Neuvirth featured two natives of the Czech Republic. Hasek led the Czech Republic to a gold medal at the Nagano Winter Games in 1998 and last year had his No. 9 retired in his Czech Republic hometown of Pardubice.

The Red Wings played for the first time since Howard injured his groin early in Saturday’s loss at Washington. Howard is the Red Wings’ second injured goalie. Jonas Gustavsson was placed on injured reserve Nov. 6 with a separated shoulder.

Neuvirth finished with 27 saves.

Helm’s wrist shot from the right circle gave the Red Wings their first short-handed goal of the season and a 1-0 lead midway through the first period.

The Sabres have given up a league-high seven short-handed goals this season.

Nyquist backhanded a rebound past Neuvirth on a power play to put Detroit in front 2-0 less than eight minutes into the second period.

The Sabres got on the board later in the period when Drew Stafford fed Weber in front of the net for his first goal of the season.

Detroit went up 3-1 less than two minutes later when Tatar knocked in a rebound.

NOTES: . Red Wings GM Ken Holland said Howard is expected to miss two to four weeks after an ultrasound confirmed an MRI’s finding that Howard has a slightly torn groin muscle. … Buffalo recalled F Matt Ellis from Rochester on Tuesday to replace Chris Stewart, who is out with the flu. … Detroit called up G Tom McCollum from Grand Rapids to back up Mrazek. … Sabres F Torrey Mitchell (foot) returned after missing 12 games. … New Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan attended the game.

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