DETROIT, March 11 (UPI) -- Johan Franzen scored twice Thursday and the Detroit Red Wings kept their playoff push rolling by blasting Minnesota 5-1.
The Red Wings, who have won five of their last seven games, began the evening one point behind Calgary for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Franzen opened the scoring 2:25 into the contest and Detroit owned a 3-0 lead 15 seconds past the midway point of the first period. Tomas Holmstrom and Henrik Zetterberg produced the other goals in the opening period.
Jimmy Howard made 21 saves to get the win. Andrew Ebbett scored the only goal against Howard on a wrist shot with 11 seconds remaining in the first.
Josh Harding allowed all five Detroit scores on 30 shots. Franzen delivered his first multi-goal game of the season.