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Red Wings shoot for NHL home record vs. Flyers

The Detroit Red Wings will try to tie the NHL record for consecutive home wins when they shoot for their 20th straight victory at Joe Louis Arena tonight against the Philadelphia Flyers.

It's fitting that the Red Wings will go for the record against the Flyers. Philadelphia matched the NHL record for most home wins in a row when it won 20 straight at the Spectrum during the 1975-76 season, equaling the mark first set by the 1929-30 Boston Bruins.

Detroit has extended its club record for consecutive home victories by going 2-0 at the start of a six-game homestand. The wins over Edmonton and Anaheim have boosted the Red Wings' record in the Motor City this year to 22-2-1 and Detroit hasn't lost in front of its home crowd since Nov. 3 against Calgary.

Philadelphia had lost eight straight in Detroit before posting a 3-2 regulation win at the Joe last season on Jan. 2. The Flyers have lost 14 of their last 16 regular-season games in Motown, but Philly has taken two straight and three of four overall in this series.

The Red Wings needed a shootout to post consecutive home win No. 19 on Friday, as Todd Bertuzzi supplied the decisive goal in the third round of the shootout to lift Detroit to a 2-1 victory over the Ducks.

Following an exciting overtime, Bertuzzi skated in on Jonas Hiller very slowly and beat the Anaheim goaltender with a backhander. Joey MacDonald then denied Bobby Ryan to assure the win for Detroit, which leads the Central Division, Western Conference and NHL with 76 points.

"We know it's a grind and not easy, but when you're playing well, especially at home, you just keep going with it and try not to think too much about it," said Detroit defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom.

MacDonald made 29 saves for the Red Wings, as he continues to do a solid job filling in as Detroit's primary starter while Jimmy Howard is sidelined with a broken finger. MacDonald has started the last three games for Detroit and has stopped 64-of-69 shots while posting a 2-1 record in those outings. Howard suffered his finger injury on Feb. 2 and is expected to miss 4-to-6 weeks of action.

In other injury news for the Red Wings, forward Danny Cleary sat out on Friday with a lower-body injury and will miss tonight's game as well as Tuesday's test against Dallas.

Although the Flyers have an 18-8-2 record on the road this year, they won't have much of a chance to halt Detroit's home streak if they don't stop their recent funk. Philadelphia is still fourth in the Eastern Conference with 69 points, but Peter Laviolette's club has lost four of its last five games.

Philadelphia was slammed by the visiting New York Rangers on Saturday afternoon, as Ryan Callahan posted his second career hat trick in a 5-2 win for the Blueshirts. The victory pushed New York's lead atop the Atlantic Division to six over the Flyers as the Rangers improved to 5-0 against Philadelphia this season.

The story of the game was the power play. The Rangers went 3-for-7 with the man advantage, while Philly was 0-for-4. The Flyers only trailed 3-2 heading into the third before letting the game get away from them.

Wayne Simmonds had a goal and an assist for the Flyers and Claude Giroux also scored. Sergei Bobrovsky turned aside 21-of-26 shots in defeat.

"It doesn't feel good. Obviously we played them five times and lost to them five times so it is not a good feeling in here right now," Simmonds said.

Bobrovsky has started the last two games while No. 1 netminder Ilya Bryzgalov has dealt with a bout of the flu. Bryzgalov traveled with the team to Detroit and will likely get the start tonight.