By LARRY LAGE, Associated Press
DETROIT (AP) — The Detroit Red Wings won an NHL-record 21st straight home game, beating the Dallas Stars 3-1 on Tuesday night.
Henrik Zetterberg and Brad Stuart scored midway through the first period for the Red Wings, who broke the mark of 20 set by the Boston Bruins during the 1929-30 season, and matched by the Philadelphia Flyers in 1976.
Fans at Joe Louis Arena gave the team a standing ovation in the final minute and were chanting: "21! 21!" After the game, the Red Wings raised their sticks to acknowledge the cheering fans.
In the NHL's seven seasons with a shootout to eliminate tie games, Boston won 14 straight at home during the 2008-09 season. That was the longest streak until Detroit's current run of dominance in the Motor City.
Joey MacDonald made 20 saves, filling in again for the injured Jimmy Howard, and was 32.8 seconds away from his third NHL shutout.
Adam Burish scored and Kari Lehtonen stopped 34 shots for the Stars.
The Red Wings' next two games are at home — Friday against Nashville, and Sunday when they host San Jose. That will give them a chance to break another record by the Bruins.
Boston won 22 straight home games, spanning two seasons. The Bruins closed the 1929-30 season with 20 victories at home and then won its first two in Boston the following season.
The NBA's longest home winning streak in a season is 37, set by Chicago during the 1995-96 season. The 1978 Pittsburgh Pirates and 1988 Boston Red Sox both won 24 straight at home for baseball's longest single-season, home-winning streaks since 1919. The Miami Dolphins won 27 straight at home from 1971-74 for the NFL mark.
Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said before Tuesday's game that the team wouldn't make room for a banner in Joe Louis Arena's crowded rafters if a record was set against Dallas.
Holland said the club can hoist four banners each season for winning the Stanley Cup, the Presidents' Trophy, and Western Conference and Central Division titles.
Detroit hopes it doesn't follow the path of the last two teams to win 20 straight at home.
The Bruins eight-plus decades ago and the Flyers nearly 36 years ago were defending Stanley Cup champions and went on to lose in the finals.
Detroit essentially finished off Dallas in the first half of the opening period.
Zetterberg scored off his own rebound on the power play 7:57 in, and Stuart's wrist shot sliced through traffic from the top of the right circle 1:18 later to make it 2-0.
After the Red Wings held onto the lead rather easily, Jiri Hudler slipped behind the Stars on a shift change and scored with 4:49 left in the game to give Detroit a three-goal lead.
NOTES: The Red Wings are shooting for Howard, who has been out with a broken right index finger, to return on Sunday. ... Dallas has lost three straight after winning four of six. ... Before the game, the Red Wings honored Tomas Holmstrom for playing in his 1,000th career game last week.
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