DETROIT (Reuters) - Pavel Datsyuk had a goal and set up three others as the Detroit Red Wings charged to an early lead then held on to edge the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3 on Saturday and take a 2-0 series lead in their quarter-final playoff.
The best-of-seven series now shifts to Phoenix for Games Three and Four on Monday and Wednesday with the Coyotes needing at least one win to avoid being swept from the post-season.
Backed by a raucous capacity crowd at Joe Louis Arena, the Red Wings charged to a 3-0 lead on powerplay goals from Datsyuk and Brian Rafalski followed by an even strength tally from Darren Helm with under a minute to play in the opening period.
Thomas Holmstrom added to the Detroit advantage early in the second before the Coyotes rallied with three powerplay markers, including two from captain Shane Doan and another from Radim Vrbata.
But the comeback fell short, Red Wings netminder Jimmy Howard denying Phoenix the equaliser after the Coyotes had pulled goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov for the extra-attacker in one last bid to force the contest to overtime.
(Writing by Steve Keating in Toronto; editing by Brian Homewood)