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Rebounding Sharks beat Red Wings in shoutout

The SportsXchange

DETROIT -- The San Jose Sharks bounced back from a bad game and a third-period goal against Thursday night.

Logan Couture and Patrick Marleau scored in the shootout to give San Jose a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena.

Each team is battling to hold on to Western Conference playoff spots and the Sharks were coming off a 4-0 loss at Columbus on Tuesday night.

"I think it was good. Our road game has been lacking a little bit," Marleau said. "We came out strong in the first and showed a lot of resiliency in the third."

Marleau and Couture also got the goals in regulation for San Jose (21-12-7), which is fifth in the Western Conference. Antti Niemi made 27 saves.

"It's going to be a battle to the end and we know that," Couture said. "It's going to be a sprint to the finish."

Justin Abdelkader and Jakub Kindl scored for Detroit (19-15-6) in the first three periods. Pavel Datsyuk scored in the shootout. The Red Wings are in the eighth and final playoff position. Jimmy Howard stopped 28 shots.

"Two points would have been a lot better. But we got one point," Detroit captain Henrik Zetterberg said. "We got a game tomorrow again. We just gotta go in and play solid road game in Chicago and head off to Nashville."

Kindl's power-play goal 2:29 into the third period gave Detroit a 2-1 lead. He converted Zetterberg's pass on a one-timer from the slot for Kindl's fourth goal. It was Zetterberg's 400th career assist.

"I got it in a perfect position there and I think anyone could score from that angle and everything," Kindl said.

But Couture's power-play goal just 1:31 later tied the game at 2-2. He put in a rebound with a backhand shot under the crossbar for his 16th goal.

"It's big to come back in this building and win a game like that," Couture said. "They got the lead and we didn't sag."

After being soundly outplayed in the first period, the Red Wings began picking up momentum about five minutes into the second and were rewarded when Abdelkader tied it at 1, 9:51 into the middle period, with his eighth goal. Abdelkader put in a one-time shot from just off the crease to Niemi's left. Abdelkader converted a pass from Johan Franzen to break Detroit's scoring drought of 89:51.

The Red Wings have only scored 11 goals in their last seven games.

"The league tightens up, right?" Detroit coach Mike Babcock said "Some guys score and some guys don't. We've got a lot that don't."

Marleau opened the scoring with a shorthanded goal just 2:35 into the game. He completed a 2-on-1 rush by taking a pass from Joe Pavelski and beating Howard from the bottom of the left circle. It was Marleau's 17th goal.

"Just a great pass from Joe," Marleau said. "Was able to get it and make a quick shot back towards the post."

San Jose defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic hit the goal post with 8:45 left in the opening period.

The Sharks dominated the first period, outshooting the Red Wings 11-5.

"They scored right away there on the shortie and after that they kept having momentum all period," Zetterberg said. "We couldn't really get anything going and I think after going in for the second, we played better, we moved up our game and played more in their end, played more physical."

NOTES: Howard says he is close to signing a six-year contract extension with Detroit. He is in the final year of a deal that pays him $2.25 million annually. ... Red Wings right wing Damien Brunner returned after missing three games with a sore hip flexor. ... San Jose defenseman Brad Stuart played with Detroit from 2007-08 until last season and McLellan was formerly a Red Wings assistant coach. ... Detroit doesn't expect center Darren Helm, who has been limited to one game because of back woes, to return this season. ... Defenseman Ian White was a healthy scratch for the Red Wings. ... Linesman Jean Morin was helped off the ice after colliding with San Jose's Andrew Desjardins along the boards with a little under eight minutes left in the second period. Play continued with only remaining linesman Tim Nowak and referees Don VanMassenhoven and Kevin Pollock. Morin returned in the third period.
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