The Detroit Red Wings weren't near death after all. They just needed a wakeup call.
Nicklas Lidstrom scored two goals and set up a third and Sergei Fedorov had four assists as the Red Wings jump-started their sputtering offense to beat Colorado 6-4 Thursday night and cut the Avalanche's series lead to 2-1.The Western Conference finals continue with Game 4 in Denver on Saturday night.
Detroit, hoping to become only the 15th team to rebound from losing the first two games at home and win a best-of-7 Stanley Cup playoff series, built a seemingly comfortable 5-2 lead late in the second period.
Colorado countered moments later with two goals just seven seconds apart, and the Red Wings left the ice stunned.
"That was an alarm clock for our team," coach Scotty Bowman said. "We talked about the fact we needed to play a solid third period."
Lidstrom's second goal, just 32 seconds into the third period on a shot from the blue line, settled the Red Wings.
A game that featured hard hitting and a rash of penalties in the early going turned into a shootout in the second period. Each team scored a goal 20 seconds apart early in the second period, and four goals were scored in the last 4:26.
The Red Wings, desperately seeking offense after being shut out in Game 2, got the first two goals and led 2-1 after one period.
Right wing Darren McCarty scored on a wraparound at 9:22 - the first goal by a Detroit forward in the series.
Barely a minute later, Lidstrom, a defenseman, scored his fourth goal of the playoffs on a shot from the point at 10:31.
Claude Lemieux got Colorado's first goal on a power play at 15:37, scoring from the slot on a rebound of a shot by Adam Deadmarsh. It was Lemieux's fourth goal of the playoffs but only his first shot-on-goal of the series.
Avalanche defenseman Adam Foote left the ice midway through the period, bleeding profusely from the forehead. Vyacheslav Kozlov had slammed Foote's head into the glass.
The Red Wings had an 11-5 edge in shots in the period, but Roy was solid, making a sweeping glove save of a hard shot by Steve Yzerman during a Detroit power-play opportunity.
Detroit, playing without injured defenseman Paul Coffey, made it 3-1 at 5:36 of the second period on a power-play goal by Dino Ciccarelli, who fought off defenseman Sylvain Lefebvre just outside the crease and tipped in Fedorov's shot.
But Colorado scored 20 seconds later.