(SportsNetwork.com) - The Detroit Red Wings aim to head into the All-Star break with their longest winning streak in almost three years as they battle the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night at Joe Louis Arena.
The Red Wings have matched a season high with four victories in a row and they sit second in the Atlantic Division with 61 points. That is two ahead of the Montreal Canadians and one back of the first-place Tampa Bay Lightning.
Detroit has totaled 17 goals over its current winning streak, with 11 of those coming in the past two games. It matched a season high for goals in a game on Sunday with a 6-4 win over the Buffalo Sabres.
The Sabres led 3-0 after the first period, but the Red Wings ripped off five straight goals to grab control. Detroit scored three times in the second period to even the score and Henrik Zetterberg then netted all three of his goals in the game in the final frame.
Zetterberg notched his sixth career hat trick and first since Feb. 1, 2013.
"I think it's been a while, so it's always nice to see the puck go in," said Zetterberg of his hat trick.
Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Tatar each posted a goal and one assist for the Red Wings, who won for the sixth time in seven games.
Detroit hasn't won five straight since a six-game run from Feb. 8-19, 2012.
While Zetterberg upped his season totals to 14 goals and a club-high 41 points, Tatar notched his team-leading 21st goal of the campaign. He has scored in four straight contests, with five goals over that span, and was named the NHL's Second Star for the week on Monday.
Thomas McCollum picked up his first career victory on Sunday as he made seven saves on eight shots faced in relief of Petr Mrazek, who was lifted 13:37 into the game for giving up three goals on seven shots.
McCollum made just his second career NHL appearance and first since a near 15- minute relief outing on March 30, 2011.
With Jimmy Howard out with a groin injury, Mrazek figures to get a shot at rebounding tonight. He has faced the Wild once before and took a loss on Feb. 17, 2013 after yielding three goals on 24 shots faced.
The Wild come in slumping, having had a two-game win streak halted with last night's 3-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. It was Minnesota's seventh loss in nine games.
Zach Parise scored in a third straight game, getting his team-leading 17th of the campaign, but he also failed to convert on a penalty shot in the second period to keep the game tied.
"I'm always a big believer in that you have to put pucks on the net if you want to score," said Minnesota head coach Mike Yeo. "We've got the bodies to create traffic and generate secondary opportunities, and we didn't have much of that tonight."
In his third start since being acquired in a trade with the Arizona Coyotes, Devan Dubnyk allowed three goals on 23 shots to take the loss for the Wild.
Minnesota activated goaltender Darcy Kuemper off of injured reserve on Monday, giving it three active netminders on the roster along with Niklas Backstrom.
With Backstrom struggling and Kuemper missing time with an undisclosed injury, the Wild acquired Dubnyk to solidify the position.
Kuemper, though, could start tonight after missing seven straight games and has split two prior meetings with the Red Wings while posting a 2.54 goals against average and .918 save percentage.
The Wild have won three of their past four versus the Red Wings, including two straight in Detroit, and begin a four-game road trip tonight that picks up in Western Canada after the All-Star break.