DETROIT (AP) — Tomas Tatar scored on Detroit's third shootout attempt, and Jimmy Howard stopped all three Edmonton attempts to lift the Detroit Red Wings to a 2-1 win over the Oilers on Friday night.
Edmonton's Ryan Smyth tied the game midway through the third period. Smyth scored on a shot from the slot that was set up by Detroit defenseman Brendan Smith's backhanded giveaway.
Riley Sheahan put the Red Wings ahead 1-0 late in the first period. They lost the lead and failed to take advantage of power plays late in regulation and midway through overtime.
The banged-up Red Wings are trying to reach the postseason for a 23rd straight time.
Edmonton has the worst record in the Western Conference and isn't far from being eliminated from the playoff race for the eighth straight season.
The last time the Oilers were in the playoffs, they beat Detroit in the first round and went on to lose to Carolina in Game 7 of the 2006 Stanley Cup finals.
With much less at stake, the Oilers went into the third period with a shot to win at Joe Louis Arena for the first time since 2009.
Detroit's young lineup had just 13 shots through two periods. The Red Wings didn't generate many scoring chances in the third until the game was tied against Viktor Fasth, who made 22 saves.
Edmonton acquired Fasth from Anaheim earlier this month for draft picks. He won his Oilers debut against Minnesota on Tuesday in a shootout.
Each team had only one shot in the opening five minutes of the lackluster game, which had many more sloppy moments than spectacular stretches.
The Red Wings had only two shots when they went on a power play with 9:35 left in the first period, and added only one more with an extra skater while struggling to get the puck anywhere near the net.
Detroit was up 1-0 after two periods and probably didn't feel comfortable after losing one-third of their previous 27 games when entering the third with the lead.
The Red Wings allowed the Oilers to pull into a tie because Smith failed to clear the puck out of their end or at least pass it to a teammate. Smyth took advantage, but he and his teammates couldn't convert on a power play that started less than a minute later.
Howard finished with 21 saves.
NOTES: The Red Wings had lost two straight. ... Edmonton has lost three of four. ... Detroit F Teemu Pulkkinen played his first NHL game, becoming the ninth player to make his debut with the rebuilding franchise over the last 14 months. ... The Red Wings are 13-0-1 in their last 14 against the Oilers, who have lost eight straight in Detroit. ... Red Wings D Danny DeKeyser left the game briefly in the first period after he appeared to get hit in the face with the right skate of teammate Luke Glendening.
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