Pavel Datsyuk and Tomas Kopecky added power-play goals for Detroit, 6-0-1 in its last seven and 13-2-3 overall. The Red Wings were 3-for-6 with the man advantage to improve their NHL-leading conversion rate to 34.2 percent.
"Our start killed us tonight," Souray said. "You get down 3-0 to a team like Detroit in the first 10 minutes of a game and it is a tough mountain to climb. Our starts are obviously a concern to us. Our competitive level has to be better off the start."
The Oilers have lost four of their last five to drop to 9-9-2, prompting coach Craig MacTavish to keep the dressing room closed for 15 minutes after the game.
"There's not enough personal commitment collectively to battle," MacTavish said. "Whether you are a small guy, medium guy, young guy, experienced guy, you have to battle. You have to get in there. We're not competing hard enough collectively, especially in our own building. We haven't played a good game in our building yet. We have to come out and start taking charge in our building otherwise it is no advantage."
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock wasn't completely satisfied.
"We jumped on them early. Then after the 10-minute mark, for the rest of that period we fell asleep," Babcock said. "We got into some penalty trouble. It always happens when you're ahead in this league, but we were able to battle through it."
The defending Stanley Cup champion Red Wings opened the scoring 1:50 into the first period. Andreas Lilja's point shot was kicked aside by goalie Dwayne Roloson, but Hudler scored off the rebound. Detroit made it 2-0 just 6 minutes later on a power play when Datsyuk feathered a shot through traffic.
"Right before the opening faceoff, Mike (Babcock) told me I was going to be a big guy on the power play and I played the power play last year a little bit and I kind of know what to do," Kopecky said.
"Go in front, battle and find the pucks. You try to do the best and with those guys it's so easy. You give them the puck and get open they find you anywhere. It's definitely a good confidence booster for me and hopefully I'll keep it going."
The Oilers finally got on the scoreboard with a power-play marker of their own with seven minutes remaining in the second. Robert Nilsson made a nifty behind-the-back pass to Cogliano, who snapped a shot past Osgood.
But the Wings restored their three-goal edge on another power play with a 1½ minutes to play in the second. After the puck caromed high off the glass and came straight down to Hudler, he stuffed in his second of the contest.
Edmonton would make a game out of it, however, with goals 19 seconds apart late in the third period. With a little over seven minutes to play, Visonovsky took advantage of a scramble in front of the Detroit net, wiring a slap shot from in close with the teams playing four aside. The Oilers received a power-play opportunity seconds later and capitalized when Souray unleashed a hard shot from the point for his seventh of the season.
- Detroit played without Tomas Holmstrom (back spasms) and Niklas Kronwall (sore ankle).
- Shawn Horcoff played in his 500th game for the Oilers.