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Lebda's goal helps Red Wings to fourth straight victory

Nov 2, 2006 - 3:17 AM DETROIT (Ticker) -- Maybe the Detroit Red Wings are starting to come around.

Defenseman Brett Lebda scored his first goal of the season midway through the third period to help the Red Wings to a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.

Lebda scored the game-winner for Detroit, which has won four straight, when he streaked down the right side and beat Calgary goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff with a shot from the faceoff circle for a 3-1 lead at 11:24 of the third period.

"Their defenseman came off the bench, so (Kiprusoff's) gap was a little low," Lebda said. "I used him as a screen."

Detroit coach Mike Babcock is pleased with how his club has responded after a slow start to the season in which they went 3-4-1.

"We came back from the West Coast trip and decided to get back to basics," he said. "We're a skating team. We're a puck possession team. We obviously got outplayed there. We wanted to turn it around, and now we've won four in a row."

The Red Wings initially took an early 2-0 lead with goals 1:19 apart in the first period.

Johan Franzen opened the scoring at 4:29 when he took a pass from defenseman Chris Chelios and beat Kiprusoff from the slot. Tomas Holmstrom banged in a rebound on the power play for a 2-0 lead at 5:48.

"I got a great pass right in the middle of the slot and got off a pretty good shot," said Franzen, who has two goals and five assists this season.

Holmstrom, who only had two points in his first nine games, has recorded five points in his last three contests.

"You give up two goals early to a team like that, and it's tough to come back," said Kiprusoff, who finished with 31 saves.

Calgary sliced the deficit to 2-1 at 12:29 of the first period when blue-liner Dion Phaneuf's shot from the point beat a screened Dominik Hasek.

Defenseman Andrew Ference scored the other goal for Calgary, which went 1-for-3 on the power play. Detroit went 1-for-6 with the extra skater.

The loss dropped the slumping Flames to 1-5-1 in their last seven games.

"We're close, but we don't win," said Calgary superstar Jarome Iginla, who was held without a shot. "We've got to change it and we've got to change it quickly. We're trying. We believe we're going to turn it around."

Chelios played in his 1,487th game, tying him with Wayne Gretzky for 12th place on the all-time list.

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