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Mzarek stops 28 shots as Red Wings beat Avalanche, 3-0

DENVER (AP) — Petr Mrazek had 28 saves for his first shutout of the season to lead the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday night.

Justin Abdelkader put the Red Wings on the scoreboard in the second period, and Darren Helm and Luke Glendening added empty-net goals in the last 3 minutes. Detroit improved to 8-1-0 in its last nine games and pulled two points behind Tampa Bay for tops in both the Atlantic Division and the Eastern Conference.

Semyon Varlamov had 25 saves for Colorado, which dropped to 3-1-1 in its last five. The Avalanche were 0 for 3 on the power play and have not scored in their last 22 chances over the last four games. They are also just 3 for 43 over their last eight games with the man advantage.

Detroit came in with the league’s best power play and showed why in its first opportunity. With Colorado’s Jan Hejda off for interference, Henrik Zetterberg fed Abdelkader in front of the net, and he put in his own rebound at 6:35 of the second period.

Colorado sent three of its past four games into overtime by pulling Varlamov for an extra skater in the final minutes but couldn’t keep the momentum going against Detroit. Helm scored with 2:29 remaining and Glendening sealed it with 15 seconds left.

Colorado appeared to take a 1-0 lead just 6:09 into the game but Gabriel Landeskog’s goal was disallowed on a hand pass.

The Avalanche outshot Detroit 12-5 in the first and controlled the play for most of the period.

NOTES: Avalanche D Tyson Barrie was scratched due to a hip flexor injury. … Detroit recalled D Xavier Ouellet and G Jonas Gustavsson from Grand Rapids of the AHL and assigned G Tom McCollum to Grand Rapids. … Red Wings G Jimmy Howard skated with the team Wednesday and could return as early as next week. He has missed 12 games with a groin injury.

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