It's time to even things up.
The Red Wings did not play well in game 1. They were dominated in the puck possession game at times by the Sharks and were badly, badly out shot. With as bad as they played, the score still read 2-1...and it took the Sharks overtime to get the job done.
Game 2 isn't a must win, but it's definitely a game the Wings would love to have. This team knows what it takes to win big games. They've been there before and succeeded. Today in San Jose is no different. Any rust from all the time off will be gone. Any hesitation of playing in a loud opponent's building will be brushed aside. There's one goal...and that's to win the game and tie this series. The Wings know what the task is and will go out and achieve it.
Puck drop is just after 3p ET on NBC.
Fear The Fin is your SBNation Sharks' blog.
More after the jump.
The Expected Lineup
Henrik Zetterberg -- Pavel Datsyuk -- Tomas Holmstrom
Jiri Hudler -- Valtteri Filppula -- Johan Franzen
Danny Cleary -- Justin Abdelkader -- Todd Bertuzzi
Kris Draper / Drew Miller -- Darren Helm -- Patrick Eaves
Nicklas Lidstrom -- Brad Stuart
Brian Rafalski -- Jonathan Ericsson
Niklas Kronwall -- Ruslan Salei
Jimmy Howard (starting)
Scratches: Miller/Draper, Mike Modano, Jakub Kindl, and Chris Osgood.
Aces: Brendan Smith, Tomas Tatar, Illari Filppula, Jan Mursak, Derek Meech, Brian Lashoff, Doug Janik and Jordan Pearce
Much of the same from the lineup. Now that Hank is back, the Draper/Miller healthy scratch carousel is back into action. I would sit Miller for game 2 and bring back Drapes. Nothing against Miller's play of late, but the Draper/Helm/Eaves line is one of the best when those three get rolling together. Draper's experience will be helpful being down 0-1 in the opponents building. Plus, Miller always plays well after being a healthy scratch. So if he sits, expects 2 goals from the kid in game 3. The Wings need more from the Cleary/Abby/Bert line. Gator will be out to redemption after game 1. Don't be surprised to see the top two lines shaken up if things are great early on. I wouldn't mind see Datsyuk and Hudler back together and we've seen Flip and Hank play well together too.
|DET||HOW THEY MATCH UP (PLAYOFF EDITION)||SJ|
|3.80 (1st)||GOALS PER GAME||3.14 (T-5th)|
|2.40 (4th)||GOALS AGAINST PER GAME||3.00 (10th)|
|23.5% (4th)||POWER PLAY %||10.3% (13th)|
|70.8% (14th)||PENALTY KILL %||80.8% (8th)|
|5 tied with 2 goals||GOAL LEADER||2 tied with 4 goals|
|Pavel Datsyuk (7 points)||POINTS LEADER||Ryane Clowe (7 points)|
Key to the Game: To quote the great magician Pavel Datsyuk, "need more shoot." This team MUST get more shots on Antti Niemi. He struggled in the first round against a much wearker offensive team in the Kings. The Wings need to test him. If you can get a high percentage shot, do it. If you can't, it never hurts to just throw the puck towards Niemi and crash the net
Match-up to Watch: Joe Thornton vs Brad Stuart. J.J. mentioned in his CSSI Analysis that Stuart did a nice job bodying Jumbo Joe in game 1. Call him a choker if you want, but Thornton is a very big and skilled player. Keeping him from making big plays will go a long way for the Wings. Also, anyone and everyone vs. Joe Pavelski. Keep him off the score sheet because when he scores, good things usually happen for the Sharks.
Hey! I'm Calling You Out: I'm calling out Johan Franzen. Time to regain that scoring touch. This team needs you. Step it up. Other notables that I would like to see have a big game: Valtteri Filppula and Jiri Hudler. How about the second line just busts out with a big game?
For Discussion: In regular and postseason play, the Wings have lost their last 4 games against the Sharks and 8 of their last 10. Time to reverse that trend.
Let's Go Red Wings.