Hudler scored the winning goal and had an assist as the Wings beat the Calgary Flames 5-2 on Saturday night for their fifth straight victory.
“It’s a bit of luck,” said Hudler, who jumped off the bench as the extra attacker and fired a feed from Henrik Zetterberg into the top corner over goalie Miikka Kiprusoff’s outstretched glove at 11:21 of the third. “It was a great pass. I had nothing else to do, so I just shot the puck and tried to hit the net.”
Marian Hossa added an empty-net tally to give him a team-leading 11 goals and 13 assists. Hossa credited Hudler for sparking the team.
“Huds is hot right now,” Hossa said of his Czech teammate, who has put up four goals and two assists in three games. “It seems like there was a little bit of an opening on his goal and he shot it right in the top corner. That was a huge goal.”
Kirk Maltby scored the lone goal of the first period and Brett Lebda netted his first of the season in the second to give the Red Wings (14-2-3) a 2-0 lead. Defenseman Andreas Lilja set up both goals.
“Conklin gave us a good effort,” said coach Mike Babcock, whose team is 10-1-1 on the road and 9-0-3 when leading after two periods. “We know how to win. We’ve been winning for a while here and we’re determined. When you get contributions from lots of people, you’re better.”
The Red Wings haven’t lost in regulation in November (7-0-1) with four more games remaining in the month.
“They buried their chances and we obviously didn’t bury ours,” Glencross said.
The Flames’ two-game winning streak was snapped.
“It’s a tough one because for a lot of the night we did a lot of good things and we fought our way back,” Calgary captain Jarome Iginla said.
The Red Wings opened the scoring at 4:26 of the first period when Maltby tipped a pass from Lilja just inside the left post behind Kiprusoff.
At 11:46 of the second, Lebda put the Wings up 2-0 when he snapped an innocent-looking shot from the top of the circle that beat Kiprusoff to the far side just over his right pad.
Just 36 seconds later, Glencross pulled the Flames to within a goal when he squeezed a close-in shot just under Conklin’s left arm and into the net.
“I just tried to get as tight to the post as I could and he got it between my arm, but that didn’t come back to bite us,” Conklin said.
In the third, the Flames continued to press for the tying goal when Giordano wired a drop pass from Iginla into the top corner.
“We stuck with it and found a way to tie it up in the third and to keep some pressure,” Iginla said. “Unfortunately, they are a very good team and they know how to hang in. When they are getting pushed they know how to hang in there and capitalize which they did.”
A short time later, Iginla fed a perfect pass up to Daymond Langkow, who got away a quick shot that Conklin stopped with his right shoulder.
After Hudler’s goal, Datsyuk sealed the win with a nice individual effort before slipping a shot between Kiprusoff’s pads.
Lombardi returned to the Calgary lineup after missing 13 games with a shoulder injury. … After scoring seven goals in his first 12 games with the Flames, Todd Bertuzzi has gone nine without one. … Lilja has four assists in three games after recording only one in his first 14 contests.