Pavel Datsyuk had two goals in Detroit’s 4-1 victory over St. Louis. It was the second straight victory for the Red Wings, after emerging from a 1-8-2 stretch. Despite those struggles, Detroit still has a comfortable lead for the top spot in the Western Conference. Conversely, St. Louis is eight points out of the playoffs, notes the Associated Press. Elsewhere in the NHL:
- The Carolina Hurricanes beat the Atlanta Thrashers 6-3 on the strength of Eric Staal’s two-goal, one-assist effort. The Hurricanes have won two straight and eight of their last 11.
- Alexander Ovechkin continued to rampage through the NHL, scoring two goals against the Buffalo Sabres in the Capitals’ 3-1 victory. The 22-year-old Russian leads the league in goals with 54.