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NHL: Nashville 3, Detroit 1

April 18, 2012 at 12:33 AM

DETROIT, April 18 (UPI) -- Kevin Klein scored the go-ahead goal in the third period Tuesday and Nashville took a commanding lead in its playoff series with a 3-1 win over Detroit.

With the score tied 1-1, Nashville's Martin Erat carried the puck deep into the offensive zone, drawing three Red Wing defenders. That allowed defenseman Klein to swoop in unguarded, and he one-timed Erat's pass into an empty net for the lead 6:25 into the final frame.

Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne made it hold up, turning aside 40-of-41 shots -- including 12 in the final period -- to earn the victory.

Gabriel Bourque also scored and David Legwand added an empty-netter for the Preds, who grabbed a 3-games-to-1 lead over Detroit in their Western Conference quarterfinal series.

Jiri Hudler scored and Jimmy Howard made 14 saves for the Red Wings, who will try to avoid elimination Friday when the series returns to Nashville for Game 5.

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