DETROIT — His last name isn't Helmstrom or Helmppula, so Detroit center Darren Helm flies under the radar on a team loaded with superstars from Sweden and Finland.
But the Red Wings have always based their success as much on grit as skill, and with Kris Draper of "Grind Line" fame out because of an undisclosed injury, Helm has stepped in capably.
On Sunday, the 22-year-old from Winnipeg, Canada, stepped up to score a key goal in a 4-1 victory over the Ducks, sending the Red Wings to Anaheim for Game 6 Tuesday needing only one win to reach the Western Conference finals.
Detroit's lead was only 2-1 deep in the third period when Helm finished off a scramble in front of the Ducks' net by converting the rebound of a shot by Henrik Zetterberg and lifting it over Jonas Hiller's right arm at 16:52.
"That was a huge goal he scored. A dagger," said linemate Dan Cleary, whom the Ducks suspected of interfering with Hiller to help matters along.
"He's been unbelievable. He's good on faceoffs, he's fast, he's tenacious, his work ethic is contagious and he's physical."
No translation to Swedish or Finnish needed.
"We've got a few Canadians on this team," Helm said, laughing. "It's not like they walk around talking Swedish all the time. There's an English-only policy we've got going on.
"We've got a good, tight team. I don't think I feel out of place. It's fun coming to the rink every night and playing hard."
He said he and his teammates were aware they hadn't put the game away despite dominating the third period.
"You've just got to keep pushing," he said. "They get a lucky bounce there, it's a 2-2 game.
"You've got to keep playing hard and keep the big push on against them, and lucky for us we found the back of the net there when it counted."
The more things change . . .
Ducks Coach Randy Carlyle made a few switches in his lineup and to his defense pairs.
James Wisniewski's return from a lung contusion meant that Brett Festerling went back to reserve status, but Carlyle also scratched forward Josh Green and replaced him with Erik Christensen, who hadn't played since the series opener.
Christensen has skill but doesn't always display what Carlyle calls a high compete level. But with the Ducks in need of offense, Carlyle went with Christensen's skill over Green's mucking ability, and it paid off when Christensen made the pass from behind the net that led to the Ducks' goal.
Carlyle also separated longtime linemates Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, putting Getzlaf between Christensen and Teemu Selanne and placing Perry to the right of Bobby Ryan and Petteri Nokelainen.
"We found life in a few situations when we moved Getzlaf around a little bit and tried to split up our offense," Carlyle said.
Out with the old
The Red Wings scratched 47-year-old defenseman Chris Chelios and gave Derek Meech his first playoff start.
Justin Abdelkader replaced Tomas Kopecky, who suffered broken bones in his face during a fight with Ducks defenseman Francois Beauchemin in Game 4.
Getzlaf's point-scoring streak ended at eight games. He had two goals and 14 points in that span. . . . The Ducks have been outshot in all 11 of their playoff games. . . . Tickets for Game 6 on Tuesday are still available through Ticketmaster or at the Honda Center box office.