DETROIT — Filip Zadina scored the tiebreaking goal with 3:52 left in the third period, sending the Detroit Red Wings to a 4-3 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night.
Zadina connected on a one-timer in front off Adam Erne’s pass from behind the net.
The Red Wings had lost two in a row and 20 of their last 23, giving them the NHL’s worst record by a wide margin. Montreal has dropped seven straight games.
Frans Nielsen got his second goal of the game with 8:41 remaining to pull the Red Wings into a 3-all tie. Earlier in the period, Victor Mete was credited with a go-ahead goal that went off Detroit defenceman Filip Hronek’s skate and into the net.
Artturi Lehkonen had a short-handed goal in the first period off Hronek’s turnover and Nick Suzuki scored on a power play in the second to give the Canadiens a two-goal lead they couldn’t hold.
Nielsen scored midway through the second and Robby Fabbri’s wrist shot from the slot early in the third tied it at 2.
Detroit goalie Jonathan Bernier made 23 saves. Montreal’s Charlie Lindgren stopped 26 shots.
Lehkonen made the most of one of the many mistakes by the Red Wings midway through the first period. He skated in front of a poorly passed puck from Hronek just inside Montreal’s blue line and carried it up the ice to beat Bernier between his pads with a backhand.
Suzuki took advantage of extra time and space on a power play 6:31 into the second and scored to put the Canadiens up 2-0.
The Red Wings, though, rallied for a rare win, and Zadina’s fist pump after his go-ahead goal showed how much each game still matters to their players and coaches.
Montreal has its longest losing streak since dropping a season-high eight in a row. … The Red Wings are 3-0 against Montreal this season but have won just eight games against the rest of the league. … Ilya Kovalchuk has at least one point in each of his two games with the Canadiens, who signed him last week. … Detroit’s Givani Smith had his first NHL assist in his seventh career game. … Nielsen had only one goal in 38 games before scoring twice against Montreal in his first multi-goal game since his hat trick.
Canadiens: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.
Red Wings: Host the Ottawa Senators on Friday night.
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Larry Lage, The Associated Press