DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings almost squandered a rare night at home.
They built a 4-1 lead against the worst team in the NHL only to let it slip down to one by late in the third period thanks to sloppy defensive play. The Wings held on to win, 5-3, over the Arizona Coyotes when Darren Helm scored into an empty net with 1:21 left in regulation.
The Wings improved to 2-2-1 at Little Caesars Arena as they made a stop there before heading out for another multi-game road trip. They've won two in a row after a six-game losing streak.
The Coyotes had played the night before in Philadelphia, where they won for the first time this season. Gustav Nyquist scored for a second straight game and Luke Glendening contributed his third goal of the season. Anthony Mantha scored his fifth goal, off a setup by linemates Dylan Larkin and Andreas Athanasiou. Larkin also had a goal and his line was active in the offensive zone much of the game.
During his first shift of the game, Nyquist picked up a loose puck along the boards inside Arizona's zone, skated to the high slot and fired a wrist shot the eluded Scott Wedgewood to give the Wings a 1-0 lead at 1:29. A minute later, Glendening got the puck from Martin Frk and fired a wrist shot top shelf from the top of the right circle.
The Wings got a little sloppy defensively in the second period and didn't test Wedgewood nearly as much after sending 18 shots his way in the first period. Sure enough the Coyotes struck to halve the lead, with Jason Demers firing a slap shot that beat Howard at 11:36. Cousins scored 2 minutes into the third period when he took advantage of scramble in front of Detroit's net. Clayton Keller scored with 3:17 left in regulation to make it a one-goal game.
The Wings had their two-goal lead back within 90 seconds after the Demers goal. Larkin stole the puck from Oliver Ekman-Larsson and got it to Athanasiou, who fired a shot towards net from the low slot. Mantha tipped the puck from the left side of the net to make it 3-1. Larkin score with 56.7 seconds left in the second period when he angled the puck on net and it deflected in off the stick of Luke Schenn.
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