Detroit Red Wings goalie Dominik Hasek stops a shot by Edmonton Oilers\' Ryan Smyth during the second period. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
Hasek stopped just 16 shots to earn his 70th career shutout and lift the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday night. "I never even had to make one save," said the 41-year-old goaltender. "I stopped the puck, I poke-checked the puck, I passed the puck, but I didn't have to make a save."
It was the seventh consecutive win for Detroit (10-4-1), which got goals from Dan Cleary, Henrik Zetterberg, and Jiri Hudler, and two assists from Chris Chelios.
The Red Wings came into the game leading the NHL in fewest shots allowed per game and improved on that average.
"We're trying to play in the middle and keep them to the outside," said Detroit captain Nicklas Lidstrom. "Let them get shots from the outside. But not from the inside."
Detroit outshot Edmonton 14-0 in the first period. It was the fourth time in Oilers' history they have been held without a shot in a period. The last time was also in Detroit, Feb. 16, 2004, in the second period.
Dwayne Roloson stopped 42 shots for Edmonton (7-7-1) in the second meeting of the season between the teams that met in the first round of the playoffs last season. The Oilers, who upset the top-seeded Red Wings last season in six games, beat Detroit 3-1 in Edmonton on Oct. 21.
Cleary opened the scoring 1:55 into the second period, when he tipped in Kirk Maltby's shot from the right point. It was Cleary's third goal of the season and third in two games.
Zetterberg added a short-handed goal 2:57 into the third period on a wrist shot from the bottom of the left circle that beat Roloson on the short side, and Hudler a power-play goal with 4:28 remaining.
Detroit right wing Jason Williams was taken off the ice on a stretcher and left Joe Louis Arena in an ambulance in the second period.
After Williams tried to put in a wraparound attempt midway through the period, the Oilers' Raffi Torres levelled him with a hard shoulder check to the face. Williams went flying to the ice and appeared to land face first. He then lay motionless in the corner.
Williams had a large cut above his left eye and was secured on the stretcher. He moved his feet while he was being tended to on the ice and waved his hand as he was being taken off the ice.
"I'm not trying to hurt anyone out there," said Torres. "But I've got to finish my hits, that's just my game. I wish him the best and hope he's going to be all right."
Williams was taken to Detroit Medical Center, where precautionary tests came back negative. There was a possibility that he would go home on Wednesday night.
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said he thought it was a clean hit.
"Willie was watching (Jason) Smith and Torres hit him," Babcock said. "You're concerned about him, but the trainer tells you he's all right right away."
Defenceman Jan Hedja finally got Edmonton's first shot of the game, 19 seconds into the second period on a slap shot from the point on which Hasek made the save.
"As a forward, you take pride in taking shots," said the Oilers' Ryan Smyth. "That's the strength of our hockey team, playing in their zone. We didn't get any of that in the first. They kept us on the outside on the most part of the game."
Notes: Edmonton was the last team to beat Detroit before its six-game winning streak with a 3-1 decision in Edmonton on Oct. 21. ... Detroit D Mathieu Schneider returned after missing three games with a sore groin. ... Red Wings' D Andreas Lilja was scratched. ... Oilers C Marty Reasoner and D Daniel Tjarnqvist were both scratched. ... This was the second of a five-game road trip for Edmonton.