What's-his-face and that Steve guy's team are in Detroit tonight for what apparently qualifies as a "divisional matchup." It's like NBCSN's "Rivalry Night" that way.
The news you've all been waiting for: Darren Helm will get the start at second line center tonight. Mike Babcock has one caveat on that:
I looked on the sheet and Fil plays 18-plus minutes. Is (Helm) going to play 18-plus minutes? No. So we’ll have to have committee.I'm honestly terrified of doing a second line center by committee, but I'm also unable to come up with better options except hoping and praying. Remember when this team had 20 million centers who just all moved to wing instead?
- With Franzen still out, Tomas Tatar will slot in on the second line wing with Helm and Daniel Alfredsson. Alfredsson's got plenty of smarts (and speed of his own) to keep up with what will hopefully be a fast combo of Helm and Tatar.
- The Red Wings would probably do well to sign Osgood to a one-day contract every time the Red Wings play the Tampa Bay Lightning. Part of the reason Detroit is 25-5-2 all time against Tampa is Osgood's 17-0-0 record against the Lightning.
Red Wings' lines
Scratches: Mikael Samuelsson, Jordin Tootoo
- After starting the season with 9 of their first 15 games at home (including a 7-game homestand), the Lightning start a three-game road trip in Detroit. They'll be playing 7 of their next 8 away from the Tampa Bay Times Forum.
- Looking at the all-time matchup from the Lightning perspective is not pretty: 1-13-0 at Joe Louis Arena with 1 tie.
- Ben Bishop will get the start in net for Tampa.
Lightning's projected lines
There's a potential early season division lead at stake tonight (unless the Toronto Maple Leafs screw it up), but I'm already ready for the doomsayers to call the season over and hear more teeth-gnashing if we lose tonight. Please win tonight, Red Wings. Just. Win.
LET'S GO RED WINGS!!