Cloutier made 30 saves, helping to foil a penalty shot in the third period, and Henrik Sedin recorded two assists as the Canucks recorded their second straight win over the Detroit Red Wings, 4-1, in a clash of Western Conference division leaders.
Vancouver posted a regular-season victory at Detroit for the first time February 6, 1997, snapping an 0-9-1 slide at Joe Louis Arena. The Canucks won two of their three road contests with the Red Wings during last year's playoffs.
Cloutier stopped all 20 shots he faced over the final 40 minutes. He forced Tomas Holmstrom wide on a penalty shot with 3:38 remaining and the Detroit left wing hit the post. That preserved a 4-1 lead and secured Vancouver's third victory in four games.
"(Cloutier) played his best game in a while," Canucks coach Marc Crawford said. "When a goaltender plays as well as Danny, he's deserving of the (first) star. It gives every one around him so much confidence. His play helped inspire the rest of the guys."
On Friday, the Canucks also recorded a 4-2 road win against the Chicago Blackhawks in another battle between Western Conference foes.
Sunday's win allowed Vancouver to move past Detroit and into a first-place tie atop the Western Conference with Dallas on 61 points.
"We stuck to our game plan, we didn't get flustered," Klatt said. "We showed some poise and scored enough goals to win the game."
Holmstrom gave Detroit a 1-0 lead 3:20 into the contest, but the Red Wings lost for the third time in five games.
The Canucks improved to 18-0-0 this season when scoring at least four goals. However, this victory appears all the more impressive as no player on Vancouver's top line were not among the goal-scorers. Brendan Morrison and All-Stars Markus Naslund and Todd Bertuzzi have combined for 68 goals this season.
"It's very critical for us to not rely completely on that big line," Klatt said. "We'll have much more success if we have scoring from everybody. When they're not scoring three or four goals a game, it's important for the rest of us to pitch in."
Klatt tied it, 1-1, 13:22 into the contest. Off a feed from Sedin, Klatt skated to the front of the net and slipped the puck under goaltender Curtis Joseph for his ninth of the season.
Allen recorded his fourth goal of the campaign with 2 1/2 minutes left until the first intermission to put Vancouver in front for good.
"That was a huge goal for us," Crawford said. "It was a veteran play from a young defenseman."
Cloutier was aided by the goalposts throughout the game. Luc Robataille and Darren McCarty each hit the iron in first and Sergei Federov found the post twice in the final 40 minutes.
"This was one of those nights that the puck found the post for me, that's a good feeling," Cloutier said. "But you can't feel too good until the final buzzer. They have so much speed up front. We just had to stay back and let them come at us."
"We had a good start, but then they scored and it looked like they started feeling comfortable," Holmstrom said. "We hit a couple of posts and crossbars and they took the game away from us."
Vancouver and Detroit square off again Friday at GM Place.