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GLENDALE, Ariz. – Petr Mrazek stopped 22 shots, including a third-period penalty shot, and the Detroit Red Wings moved into a first-place tie in the Eastern Conference with a 3-1 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday night.
With Detroit ahead 1-0, Mrazek made a blocker save of Martin Erat's penalty shot with 8:22 left after Erat was hauled down on a short-handed breakaway.
The 22-year-old Mrazek led the Red Wings to nine wins in 11 games with their top two goaltenders injured. He has allowed two goals in three games.
Riley Sheahan, Tomas Tatar and Darren Helm scored for Detroit in its third straight win.
Oliver Ekman-Larsson's career-high 16th goal with under 2 minutes left ended Mrazek's bid for a second straight shutout.
The Red Wings' third straight win gave them 71 points and moved them even with Tampa Bay.
Helm's empty-netter with 1:16 left capped a wild ending that included three goals in the final 3 minutes.
For much of the game, it appeared Detroit's conversion on its league-best power play by Sheahan's slap shot midway through the second period would hold up.
With Andrew Campbell serving a roughing penalty, Tatar batted down Antoine Vermette's clearing attempt. Sheahan then took Pavel Datsyuk's cross-ice pass and blistered a one-timer past Mike Smith's glove side.
The Red Wings, who killed off a 4-minute power play bridging the second and third periods, again rode their unlikely goaltender. Detroit was forced to use Mrazek when No. 1 Jimmy Howard went down with a groin tear on Jan. 10. Backup Jonas Gustavsson was already out with a shoulder injury.
After some shaky early performances that saw him pulled twice, Mrazek will soon force the Red Wings to make a tough decision. He entered coming off a 28-save shutout in Colorado, after allowing just one goal in a win against the New York Islanders.
That earned him a 10th straight start despite Gustavsson's return four days earlier following a rehab stint in the minors. And with Howard set to return Wednesday against Pittsburgh, Mrazek could be sent back to the minors.
If so, his final period will include stopping Erat's forehand shot as much of the crowd cheered.
The Coyotes said they set a game revenue record, but many in the crowd were wearing Detroit jerseys. Red Wings chants were occasionally heard, although Coyotes fans tried to drown them out.
The game belonged to the goalies early. Smith, who made 23 saves, made several close-in stops on a late first-period power play. He then stoned Stephen Weiss' redirect in front of the net in the final minute.
Early it was Mrazek's turn to shine. He helped kill two early Arizona power plays, then made a pad save on Lucas Lessio's breakaway in the final minute.
Mrazek got help from his teammates, too. Brendan Smith swept away a puck near the goal line as Detroit denied Arizona's lengthy man advantage bridging the second and third periods with Kyle Quincey off for hooking and unsportsmanlike conduct.
NOTES: It was the 25th penalty shot in the NHL this season. There have been eight goals. . Many fathers of Red Wings players attended the game as part of an annual trip. . Coyotes F Mikkel Boedker, 20 pounds lighter, attended the game as he continues his recovery after having his spleen removed. . Red Wings D Xavier Ouellet was a healthy scratch.