DETROIT – Mike Modano scored on his first shot with his hometown team 24 seconds after Johan Franzen's goal early in the first period and the Detroit Red Wings went on to beat the Anaheim Ducks 4-0 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
Jimmy Howard made 21 saves for his fourth career shutout. Pavel Datsyuk and Dan Cleary scored in the second period
Modano signed with the Red Wings in August after the Dallas Stars decided they didn't want him for a 21st season. The Livonia, Mich., native leads all U.S.-born NHL players with 558 goals and 1,360 points.
The 40-year-old Modano leads all active players with 23 points in season-opening games.
Anaheim's Jonas Hiller had a shaky start and finished with 39 saves.
Franzen and Modano had a lot to do with that.
The burly player known as "Mule" flicked a shot from the corner that got past Hiller 5:11 into the game. After the Ducks failed to clear the puck, Detroit's Brad Stuart dumped the puck between the circles, Cleary passed it back to Modano and he flicked a shot from just inside the right circle into the net.
Joe Louis Arena was suddenly jumping and so were the Red Wings, putting pressure on the Ducks with Datsyuk's goal early in the second and Cleary's score — off a perfectly positioned pass from Datsyuk — at the 16:55 mark of the period.
Detroit didn't need to score again in the third to hold off the Ducks, who struggled from start to finish to get quality chances against Howard, who was a finalist for rookie of the year last season.
NOTES: Red Wings D Jonathan Ericsson had back spasms in the opener and didn't play after the first period. ... Ducks D Andy Sutton didn't play in the third after getting in a fight with Detroit's Ruslan Salei midway through the second period. ... Red Wings GM Ken Holland said he expects F Kirk Maltby to accept an assignment to the minors or to retire by Monday or Tuesday.