Morning Skate: Lightning at Red Wings Preview

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Game 75

5:00p ET, Joe Louis Arena

Detroit, MI

TV: Fox Sports Detroit

Radio: 97.1 The Ticket

Lightning Blog: Raw Charge

Last night was awesome, but it no longer matters today. Next up is a date with the playoff bound Lightning. That's followed by the Atlantic division champion Bruins. Finally it's a matchup with the lowly Sabres and a rematch with the Canadiens to close out the week. Not the easiest schedule in the world.

Basically, the Red Wings absofreakinglutely have to find a way to get some points today. Justin Abdelkader may be back in the lineup. That should help carry some pianos on the ice. We've reached the point of the season where there isn't really a ton more to say. The schedule is in front us, and, regardless of the opponent, the games need to be won. Points are at a premium. Win to get in.

The Expected Lineup

Forwards

Johan Franzen Darren Helm Gustav Nyquist
Tomas Tatar Riley Sheahan Tomas Jurco
Justin Abdelkader David Legwand Daniel Alfredsson
Drew Miller Luke Glendening Joakim Andersson

Defensemen

Niklas Kronwall Brendan Smith
Kyle Quincey Danny DeKeyser
Brian Lashoff Jakub Kindl

Goaltenders

Jonas Gustavsson (starting)
Jimmy Howard


Scratches: Todd Bertuzzi

Injuries: Jonathan Ericsson (finger), Daniel Cleary (knee), Pavel Datsyuk (zest), Stephen Weiss (groin), Henrik Zetterberg (back) & Mikael Samuelsson (who cares)

LIGHTNING THE MATCH-UP RED WINGS
41-24-9 (91 pts; 3rd in Atlantic) Record 34-26-14 (82 pts; 2nd in WC Race)
2.89 (8th in NHL) Goals Per Game 2.62 (18th in NHL)
2.60 (13th) Goals Against Per Game 2.74 (16th)
18.6% (13th) Power Play % 17.6% (18th)
80.5% (22nd) Penalty Kill % 82.3% (12th)
Valtteri Filppula (24 goals) Goal Leader Gustav Nyquist (26 goals)
Valtteri Filppula (56 points) Points Leader Henrik Zetterberg (48 points)

Opponent Outlook

Player to Fear: Steven Stamkos.

X-Factor: Ben Bishop.

Familiar Faces: Valtteri Filppula.

Thumbs up (One Thing to Like About Tampa): Steve Yzerman.

Thumbs down (One Thing to Dislike About Tampa): They took Steve Yzerman.

Bullets of Knowledge

  • The Red Wings are 25-7-2-2 (W-L-T-OTL) all-time against the Lightning.

  • Last 10 games: Tampa Bay 7-0-3. Detroit 5-4-1.

  • Gustavsson is 3-0-4 with a 2.36 GAA, .920 SV% in 7 career apperances against Tampa.

Prediction: Thunderstruck.

Let's Go Red Wings.
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