“They’ve been tough for us so far this year,” Nyquist said. “I think we’ve been up almost every game in the third and they’ve found a way to come back on us to get a point or two.”
“Good win for our team,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said.
Scottie Upshall scored and Tim Thomas stopped 30 shots for Florida, which has lost four of its last five.
Detroit took a 2-1 lead when Nyquist grabbed a rebound in the slot in the Red Wings‘ zone, brought it along the left boards and beat Thomas high on the stick side at 13:22. Nyquist has nine goals in his last nine games.
“I just tried to catch the goalie a little bit off guard, shoot it quick,” Nyquist said.
Lashoff added an empty-net goal with 20 seconds left.
Howard withstood a late surge by the Panthers, with 16 shots in the third. He stopped Bergenheim on a breakaway with 3:40 left, and the Panthers had a power-play at 17:34 of the third, but only got off two shots.
“Down a goal, you knew they were going to throw everything at the net,” Howard said. “I just tried to get to the top of the paint and make myself as big as possible.”
Florida took a 1-0 lead in the first despite a slow start. Upshall came out of the penalty box just in time to take a pass from Tomas Kopecky behind the Red Wings‘ defense. His wrist shot from the slot went five-hole on Howard with 26 seconds left in the period - only the second shot of the game for Florida.
“It was great to have that 1-0 lead, but we never picked up any momentum off of it,” Thomas said. “In the third period, we had a push, but too little too late.”