Paul Hanlon's late equaliser for Hibernian made Dundee United pay for Danny Swanson's silly sending off.
United, inactive for more than a month, were ahead after only two minutes when David Goodwillie broke clear to score.
Goodwillie tapped in his second after 35 minutes, but Sol Bamba scored from close range just before the break.
Substitute Swanson picked up two yellow cards within 16 minutes, the second for a needless hand ball, before Hanlon turned home an Edwin de Graaf cross.
The draw lifts Hibs six points clear of bottom side Hamilton in ninth spot, the late goal preventing United moving to within a point of sixth-placed Motherwell.
Long-term injury absentees Darryl Duffy and Merouane Zemmama were on the Hibs bench to add some pressure on those who had recently failed to perform.
Chris Hogg, Jonathan Grounds and Valdas Trakys were left out of the squad altogether following Sunday's 2-1 loss to Aberdeen, with Liam Miller and John Rankin dropped to the bench.
De Graaf, Danny Galbraith, Lewis Stevenson, Francis Dickoh and Bamba returned to start as manager Colin Calderwood rang the changes.
United were playing their first game since drawing with Celtic on 20 November and Garry Kenneth could at last serve his suspension.
With United manager Peter Houston short of options, striker Jon Daly was Kenneth's replacement in central defence.
But it was the Hibs defence who were exposed after only two minutes.
Bamba, on his return from a hamstring problem, gave the ball away to Johnny Russell just inside the Hibs half and the United forward swiftly fed Goodwillie, who raced through one-on-one to tuck in his ninth goal of the season.
United went close to extending their lead when Barry Douglas' inswinging corner from the left found Daly, who leapt to power a header against the crossbar and Hibs frantically cleared.
Russell was then presented with a free header from a fine cross by Keith Watson but missed the target.
Riordan (left) set up Bamba (right) for Hibs' first-half reply
Hibs goalkeeper Mark Brown tipped a Russell volley onto the crossbar, but the flag had already gone up for offside as United continued to look the better side.
United goalkeeper Dusan Pernis was finally called into action by Derek Riordan's left-foot volley from a narrow angle but saved well.
Riordan then shot wide from the edge of the area, but it was United who stretched their lead after 35 minutes.
Goodwillie tapped in from two yards after Paul Dixon had gone by Michael Hart on the left of the area and delivered a cross that caught the Hibs defence flat-footed.
Hibs looked a beaten side but pulled a goal back out of the blue after Morgaro Gomis fouled Stevenson.
Riordan's 25-yard free-kick was palmed onto the post by Pernis and Bamba was first to react, nodding into the centre of the goal with the United goalkeeper off balance.
Zemmama replaced David Wotherspoon at half-time as Calderwood aimed to build on Hibs' good fortune.
Indeed, Hibs gradually began to take control of possession and only a superb block by Dixon prevented Riordan picking his spot and the forward's drive was deflected wide.
Swanson came on for Russell after 60 minutes and was his first touch was a kick at Danny Galbraith's ankle that resulted in a yellow card.
The midfielder looked lively as United subdued Hibs early second-half promise but was sent off just 17 minutes after coming on for a foolish hand ball.
Calderwood immediately replaced Lewis Stevenson and Ian Murray with Miller and Duffy as the Hibs boss adopted a more attacking formation.
Pernis saved comfortably from a Dickoh header as Hibs pushed forward and then saved from a long-range effort from Duffy.
However, Hibs' pressure eventually told when Hanlon fired into the top corner two minutes from time.
Live text and stats
Wednesday, 29 December 2010
06 Murray (Duffy 80)
08 De Graaf
16 Stevenson yellow card (Miller 80 yellow card)
24 Wotherspoon (Zemmama 46)
03 Dixon yellow card
08 Robertson (Cadamarteri 85)
27 Russell (Swanson 61 yellow card, red card)
Ref: O'ReillyAtt: 10,252
Attempts on target
Attempts off target
90:00+4:18 The final whistle goes and the game is over.
90:00+3:28 Liam Miller concedes a free kick for a foul on Barry Douglas. Free kick taken by Dusan Pernis.
90:00+3:28 Booking The referee shows Liam Miller a yellow card.
90:00+2:59 The ball is crossed by Michael Hart, clearance made by Keith Watson.
90:00+2:37 A cross is delivered by Merouane Zemmama, clearance by Keith Watson.
90:00+0:47 Free kick awarded for a foul by Paul Dixon on Merouane Zemmama. Shot on goal comes in from Derek Riordan from the free kick,
save made by Dusan Pernis.
90:00+0:47 Booking Paul Dixon booked for unsporting behaviour.
88:22 Corner from right by-line taken by Derek Riordan. Daniel Galbraith provided the assist for the goal.
88:22 GOAL - Paul Hanlon:Hibernian 2 - 2 Dundee Utd Paul Hanlon gets on the score sheet with a goal from deep inside the penalty box to the top right corner of the goal. Hibernian
2-2 Dundee Utd.
87:17 Shot from 25 yards by Darryl Duffy. Save made by Dusan Pernis.
86:11 The assistant referee flags for offside against Barry Douglas. Free kick taken by Mark Brown.
85:39 Paul Hanlon gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Danny Cadamarteri. Keith Watson takes the direct free kick.
84:21 Substitution Danny Cadamarteri comes on in place of Scott Robertson.
83:25 Corner from the left by-line taken by Derek Riordan, Souleymane Bamba takes a shot. Save made by Dusan Pernis.
83:09 The ball is crossed by Daniel Galbraith, clearance made by Jon Daly.
81:09 Unfair challenge on Paul Dixon by Merouane Zemmama results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Dusan Pernis.
80:48 Barry Douglas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Paul Hanlon. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Derek
Riordan, clearance by Jon Daly.
79:16 Substitution Liam Miller replaces Lewis Stevenson.
79:16 Substitution Darryl Duffy joins the action as a substitute, replacing Ian Murray.
78:44 Corner taken by Derek Riordan, clearance made by David Goodwillie.
77:33 Daniel Swanson handles the ball and concedes a free kick. Indirect free kick taken by Mark Brown.
77:33 Sent off Red card for Daniel Swanson.
76:24 Foul by Ian Murray on Scott Robertson, free kick awarded. Paul Dixon crosses the ball from the free kick left-footed from
74:16 The ball is crossed by Merouane Zemmama, Sean Dillon manages to make a clearance.
73:16 The ball is crossed by Derek Riordan, clearance by Prince Buaben.
73:10 Short corner taken by Derek Riordan.
72:49 Centre by Michael Hart, clearance by Keith Watson.
72:03 The assistant referee signals for offside against Daniel Swanson. Mark Brown restarts play with the free kick.
71:35 Foul by Merouane Zemmama on Morgaro Gomis, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Paul Dixon.
70:31 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Barry Douglas from the left by-line, save by Mark Brown.
66:45 Morgaro Gomis challenges Souleymane Bamba unfairly and gives away a free kick. Mark Brown takes the direct free kick.
64:49 The ball is swung over by Michael Hart.
64:38 Derek Riordan takes the inswinging corner, Keith Watson makes a clearance.
64:04 Merouane Zemmama takes the outswinging corner, clearance by Sean Dillon.
63:20 The ball is crossed by Daniel Swanson, Morgaro Gomis produces a header from inside the area that goes over the crossbar.
61:36 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Daniel Galbraith by Daniel Swanson. Free kick taken by Mark Brown.
61:36 Booking Booking for Daniel Swanson for unsporting behaviour.
60:44 Substitution Johnny Russell goes off and Daniel Swanson comes on.
59:41 Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Barry Douglas from the left by-line, Sean Dillon takes a shot. Souleymane Bamba makes
57:40 Inswinging corner taken by Derek Riordan, Header from deep inside the area by Souleymane Bamba goes over the bar.
57:11 Derek Riordan takes a shot. Jon Daly gets a block in.
56:33 Paul Hanlon fouled by David Goodwillie, the ref awards a free kick. Mark Brown takes the direct free kick.
55:08 Paul Dixon concedes a free kick for a foul on Merouane Zemmama. Free kick crossed right-footed by Michael Hart, clearance
by Keith Watson.
54:50 Unfair challenge on Ian Murray by Prince Buaben results in a free kick. Paul Hanlon takes the direct free kick.
54:15 Daniel Galbraith is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Dusan Pernis restarts play with the free kick.
53:11 Barry Douglas challenges Merouane Zemmama unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by
Merouane Zemmama from right wing, Morgaro Gomis manages to make a clearance.
51:47 Daniel Galbraith delivers the ball, clearance made by Sean Dillon.
50:59 Corner taken right-footed by Merouane Zemmama to the near post, Scott Robertson manages to make a clearance.
50:28 Keith Watson challenges Daniel Galbraith unfairly and gives away a free kick. Derek Riordan crosses the ball from the free
kick left-footed from left wing, clearance by Jon Daly.
49:45 Johnny Russell fouled by Daniel Galbraith, the ref awards a free kick. Dusan Pernis restarts play with the free kick.
49:04 The ball is sent over by Michael Hart, Keith Watson manages to make a clearance.
47:54 Corner taken by Derek Riordan from the left by-line played to the near post, David Goodwillie manages to make a clearance.
47:25 Merouane Zemmama has an effort at goal from outside the penalty box missing to the wide left of the goal.
45:01 The game restarts for the second half.
45:01 Substitution (Hibernian) makes a substitution, with Merouane Zemmama coming on for David Wotherspoon.
45:00+0:09 The ref blows to end the first period.
43:46 Foul by Morgaro Gomis on Lewis Stevenson, free kick awarded. Derek Riordan has a direct shot on goal from the free kick, Dusan
Pernis makes a save.
43:46 GOAL - Souleymane Bamba:Hibernian 1 - 2 Dundee Utd Souleymane Bamba grabs a headed goal from close in. Hibernian 1-2 Dundee Utd.
42:50 David Goodwillie delivers the ball, clearance by Michael Hart.
42:02 Souleymane Bamba challenges Barry Douglas unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Paul Dixon.
39:33 David Goodwillie challenges Michael Hart unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Michael Hart.
38:49 Free kick awarded for a foul by Prince Buaben on Edwin De Graaf. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Michael Hart from
right wing, Morgaro Gomis makes a clearance.
37:46 The ball is swung over by Daniel Galbraith, Johnny Russell makes a clearance.
37:40 Short corner worked by Daniel Galbraith.
36:26 Paul Dixon challenges David Wotherspoon unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Michael Hart.
34:21 The assist for the goal came from Paul Dixon.
34:21 GOAL - David Goodwillie:Hibernian 0 - 2 Dundee Utd David Goodwillie grabs a goal from inside the six-yard box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Hibernian 0-2 Dundee Utd.
33:23 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Francis Dickoh by David Goodwillie. Mark Brown takes the direct free kick.
31:51 Foul by Edwin De Graaf on Scott Robertson, free kick awarded. Dusan Pernis takes the direct free kick.
31:23 The offside flag is raised against David Goodwillie. Mark Brown takes the free kick.
30:43 Free kick awarded for a foul by Lewis Stevenson on Scott Robertson. Free kick taken by Paul Dixon.
30:43 Booking Lewis Stevenson is cautioned.
29:01 Effort from outside the penalty box by Derek Riordan goes wide right of the target.
28:26 Daniel Galbraith crosses the ball.
26:50 Shot by Derek Riordan. Save made by Dusan Pernis.
25:09 Johnny Russell has an effort at goal from just outside the penalty box hitting the post.
23:11 Shot from 20 yards by Lewis Stevenson. Save made by Dusan Pernis.
23:04 Michael Hart crosses the ball.
22:33 Daniel Galbraith delivers the ball, Dusan Pernis makes a fantastic save.
21:25 Unfair challenge on Souleymane Bamba by Johnny Russell results in a free kick. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Michael
Hart, clearance made by Jon Daly.
20:43 The ball is delivered by Derek Riordan.
20:22 Corner taken right-footed by Derek Riordan from the left by-line to the near post, Prince Buaben manages to make a clearance.
19:23 Unfair challenge on Paul Dixon by David Wotherspoon results in a free kick. Jon Daly takes the direct free kick.
18:51 A cross is delivered by Keith Watson, Johnny Russell has a header from deep inside the six-yard box and clears the crossbar.
16:38 Daniel Galbraith concedes a free kick for a foul on Keith Watson. Direct free kick taken by Keith Watson.
15:26 Free kick awarded for a foul by Morgaro Gomis on Edwin De Graaf. Edwin De Graaf crosses the ball in from the free kick, Jon
Daly manages to make a clearance.
12:34 The official flags Johnny Russell offside. Mark Brown restarts play with the free kick.
11:07 Barry Douglas gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Michael Hart. Daniel Galbraith delivers the ball from the
free kick left-footed from right wing, Barry Douglas manages to make a clearance.
9:44 Ian Murray concedes a free kick for a foul on David Goodwillie. The free kick is delivered left-footed by Barry Douglas from
left wing, Morgaro Gomis concedes a free kick for a foul on Michael Hart. Mark Brown takes the free kick.
8:59 Corner taken by Barry Douglas from the right by-line played to the near post.
8:12 Lewis Stevenson produces a cross, Jon Daly makes a clearance.
1:19 Prince Buaben provided the assist for the goal.
1:19 GOAL - David Goodwillie:Hibernian 0 - 1 Dundee Utd David Goodwillie finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Hibernian
0-1 Dundee Utd.
0:00 The ref blows the whistle to start the match.
Live text and data provided by The Press Association.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.