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Ottawa loses 3-1 against Detroit as Phaneuf makes debut with Senators

Ottawa Senators defenceman Dion Phaneuf (2) skates with the puck chased by Detroit Red Wings left wing Justin Abdelkader (8) in the first period at Joe Louis Arena.

Rick Osentoski/USA Today Sports

Danny DeKeyser and Henrik Zetterberg scored early in the first and third periods to help the Detroit Red Wings beat the Ottawa Senators and spoil Dion Phaneuf's debut with his new team with a 3-1 win Wednesday night.

Petr Mrazek stopped 22 shots and his bid for a second straight shutout ended with 2:24 left when Zach Smith scored.

Darren Helm restored Detroit's two-goal lead with an empty-net goal about a minute later.

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Phaneuf got off to a rough start. He skated backward, swivelled his hips and fell to the ice early on one of his first shifts as the veteran defenceman failed to keep up with Gustav Nyquist.

Craig Anderson backed up his new teammate by stopping Nyquist on the sequence for one of his 27 saves.

The Senators made a bold, win-now move to acquire Phaneuf on Tuesday in a nine-player trade with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Senators are hoping the veteran defenceman can help them surge into the playoffs over the next two months. Phaneuf, a 30-year-old and three-time All-Star, has five years left on his contract that will cost Ottawa $7-million against the salary cap each season.

Phaneuf seemed to settle in with solid play after falling near the blue line in a 1-on-1 situation with the speedy Nyquist.

He played the point on the power play, including early in the third period when his slap shot hit DeKeyser's right knee and sent the Detroit defenceman limping off the ice.

The Red Wings killed the penalty and hurt the Senators' shot at coming back less than a minute later.

Zetterberg got the puck from Pavel Datsyuk, who was dragged to the ice by Bobby Ryan, and he slipped a shot into the net on Anderson's short side to negate a penalty that would've been called on Ottawa's winger.

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The Senators had a 5-on-3 later in the period, but couldn't advantage to make it a one-goal game. They did later with Smith's goal, but pulled Anderson to add another skater and Detroit sealed the victory with a shot into an open net.

NOTES: DeKeyser returned to play after blocking Phaneuf's shot early in the third period. ... The Senators have lost six of nine. ... Detroit has won three straight games. ... Detroit D Mike Green was out with a sore groin after skating on the morning of the game.

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