ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Tyler Bertuzzi had a memorable milestone game and helped the Detroit Red Wings get a needed win.
Playing in his 100th career game, Bertuzzi recorded his first career hat trick and the Red Wings beat the Minnesota Wild 5-2 for their second win in 11 games.
Bertuzzi completed his three-goal performance at 8:38 of the third period, converting a feed from Gustav Nyquist by lifting a backhand past Devan Dubnyk.
A few hats – and one octopus – were tossed onto the ice by the many Red Wings fans in attendance.
“It felt good,” Bertuzzi said. “I missed an open net last game, so I needed to kind of bounce back and create offense and our line was decent tonight.”
Thomas Vanek had the other two goals for Detroit. Dylan Larkin had three assists and Nyquist had two for the Red Wings top trio.
Nino Niederreiter and Luke Kunin scored for the Wild, who lost for the second time in three games and were booed by many fans remaining at the end.
“That was the worst game that we’ve played since I’ve been here as coach. Effort, compete – I don’t know where it was,” said coach Bruce Boudreau, now in his third season.
Bertuzzi, who had one goal in his previous 18 games, redirected a shot by Larkin past Dubnyk 47 seconds into the third.
He tipped in a shot by Nyquist 24 seconds into the game.
“He’s a real good complementary player with guys like Larkin and Nyqie because he can make a play with them. He’s got poise with them,” Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said.
“He loves going in there and getting his hair in his face and whatever. He’s good at it. His stick’s in the air and he finds those tips,” said Vanek, who broke a 2-all tie with 4:50 left in the second.
His initial shot was blocked by Kunin, but Vanek controlled the loose puck and blasted a shot past Dubnyk from the slot for his first multigoal game since a hat trick last March 27.
Detroit had a season-high 21 of its 37 shots in the middle period. Minnesota had two, the fewest allowed in a period this season by the Red Wings.
One of those was Niederreiter’s first goal in 13 games with a power-play tally 17 seconds into the second. Vanek tied the game 28 seconds later on a rebound of his first attempt.
“I really thought when we went up 2-1, that’s usually when we kick it into gear and take over. But I think there were multiple times tonight, kind of at critical times in the game, we went to sleep,” Dubnyk said.
Maybe it was carryover from Thursday when Minnesota had no third-period shots but held off Winnipeg 3-2.
The Wild finished with 19 shots.
“Whether it was shots or no shots, I don’t think we were very good.” said Wild center Eric Staal, who has one goal in 13 games. “We just didn’t execute very well. We didn’t win a lot of the battles and they competed harder than we did. You do that in the NHL you’re going to be on the losing end of it pretty much every night.”
NOTES: Detroit D Jonathan Ericsson also had two assists. He had three goals and no assists in his first 28 games. . Kunin’s goal was his first of the season and first in 27 games since Oct. 31, 2017. . Wild RW Mikael Granlund has one in 19. … Detroit C Michael Rasmussen missed his fourth straight game with a lower-body injury.
Red Wings: Host Anaheim on Tuesday.
Wild: at Philadelphia on Monday, the lone road game in a six-game stretch
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