Tomas Holmstrom celebrated his 39th birthday by doing what he does best; frustrating goalies, leading to Red Wing goals. He stood tall in front of Jaroslav Halak, allowing Niklas Kronwall to bang home the goal that sealed it for Detroit late in the third. Kronwall’s goal gave the Wings a 3-1 advantage, which they would see through to the finish. The win was Detroit’s 17th straight win at the Joe, and 7th consecutive overall.
Jimmy Howard won his NHL-leading 30th game of the year, stopping 21 of 22 St. Louis shots in the process. He even got into a bit of a skirmish with a couple of Blues players as time expired.
The Wings were able to take care of business in regulation for the first time in the last 5 games. Detroit had won their last 4 games in shootout fashion, but only needed the typical 60 minutes to close out this one. The win gives Detroit a 3 point division lead over both St. Louis and Chicago, although St. Louis has a game in hand.
Datsyuk and Franzen were the other Detroit goal-scorers. Scott Nichol was the only Blue to get the puck past Jimmy Howard.
The Wings have Tuesday off before heading to Montreal to close out the first half (as divvied up by the All-Star game).