The Wings had a little change of pace this morning when they practiced in the nearly dark Joe Louis Arena due to a power failure in the area. Fear not however, because they were all enlightened by the end of practice.
- Justin Abdelkader and Darren Helm appear to be out for tonight, but Nyquist will in fact return.
- Mikael Samuelsson and Jordin Tootoo will be the healthy scratches up front, and Jakub Kindl will be the lone healthy scratch on defense, for a second game in a row. In addition to being a healthy scratch, Jordin Tootoo will be re-assigned to Grand Rapids today, as the the Wings start to make room for the return of currently injured players after the Christmas break.
- Riley Sheahan has been promoted to the 2nd line center, and will how he's played in the last two games, I'm not surprised. After the Toronto game, Mike Babcock said "I didn't know you could play Riley Sheahan against anybody, and now I do." and had nothing but praise for the young center.
- Stephen Weiss had sports hernia surgery, and it looks like everything went well. He had a "significant" tear in a core muscle and expected to be back sometime after the Olympic Break in February.
- Johan Franzen skated on his own a little bit today but said he isn't ready to return Saturday because he needs to get a couple practices in first. It sounds like he's getting close though, and that's good news.
The Updated Expected Lineup
|Gustav Nyquist||Pavel Datsyuk||Todd Bertuzzi|
|Tomas Jurco||Riley Sheahan||Daniel Alfredsson|
|Drew Miller||Joakim Andersson||Tomas Tatar|
|Daniel Cleary||Luke Glendening||Patrick Eaves|
|Niklas Kronwall||Jonathan Ericsson|
|Kyle Quincey||Danny DeKeyser|
|Brian Lashoff||Brendan Smith|
The Red Wings have seen a number of firsts in 2013:
- 1st NHL Game: Brian Lashoff (1/21), Petr Mrazek (2/7), Danny DeKeyser (4/1), Luke Glendening (10/12), Xavier Ouellet (10/21), Adam Almquist (11/4), Tomas Jurco (12/15)
- 1st NHL Goal: Lashoff (1/21), Joakim Andersson (2/15), DeKeyser (11/4), Almquist (11/7), Jurco (12/17)
- 1st NHL Assist: Tomas Tatar (2/7), Andersson (2/15), Lashoff (2/17), DeKeyser (4/14), Glendening (12/17), Riley Sheahan (12/21), Jurco (12/21)
- 1st NHL Shutout: Mrazek (11/2)
THIS DATE IN RED WINGS HISTORY
December 23, 1983 -Steve Yzerman and John Ogrodnick -two participants in next week's 2013 Maple Leafs vs. Red Wings AlumniShowdown -both record hat tricks as the Red Wings trounce the Maple Leafs 9-2.
The Wings have a couple season best stats against the Islanders so far:
- Fewest PIM Game: 2, Nov. 29 at NYI
- Fastest Goal, Start of Period: 0:12, Nov. 29 at NYI (Alfredsson)
The first time these two teams met this season, Evgeni Nabokov started in net and played 4:12 before Helm broke him with this goal and Nabokov missed a month. He's played 4 games since he pulled his groin trying to get a better look at Helm, so I guess the Islanders feel it's safe to start him tonight, since Helm won't be playing yet.
The Expected Islanders Lineup
|Thomas Vanek||John Tavares||Kyle Okposo|
|Michael Grabner||Frans Nielsen||Josh Bailey|
|Brock Nelson||Ryan Strome||Cal Clutterbuck|
|Matt Martin||Casey Cizikas||Colin McDonald|
|Andrew MacDonald||Thomas Hickey|
|Calvin de Haan||Travis Hamonic|
|Aaron Ness||Brian Strait|