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Game Day Updates: Jets at Red Wings

Jimmy Mother Frking Tiberius Howard
Jimmy Mother Frking Tiberius Howard
Marianne Helm

The Wings had a long hard practice yesterday, and a quick morning skate today, so let's get right to the juicy details.

The lines appear they'll be the same as those listed in the Morning Skate

Brendan Smith skated today, said he feels ready to come back, and plans to play this weekend. I'll wait to see what Babcock's plans are. When Smith returns, the Wings can just send Xavier Ouellet back to Grand Rapids and no other moves will need to be made until Ericsson comes back.

Franzen confirmed that he is indeed back in the lineup tonight and as noted in the Morning Skate, will play with Helm and Alfredsson. Still no indicationas to what kept Franzen out of the lineup. What did Franzed have to say about playing with Helm?

"We just have to find a way to keep up with Helms in the middle," Franzen said. "I'm going to look really slow next to him. He's a great athlete. He just flies out there. To our eyes his legs look like the same like they were before, but he's still the quickest and we need him."

This next tweet will probably make me toss my cookies, possibly multiple times. Putting Helm in front of the net to take hacks, whacks, and chops, so soon after returning from a back injury and missing basically 19 months of hockey....... I'll be curled up in the fetal position in the corner if anyone needs me.

Daniel Cleary confirmed that he is a healthy scratch tonight.

Of course Cleary is saying that publicly, but Babcock has his own take.

I don't think Cleary is "the worst player evarrrrrr" or anything like that... Man was that painful to type. However I do find it very encouraging that Cleary, who has always seemed to be a special minion for Babcock, is getting called out and scratched because he's not performing up to snuff. No one should be immune to sitting if they're not the best person to have on the ice any given night, and I'm happy to see Cleary isn't immune anymore.

It's Bryan Little's birthday today, and I hope Datsyuk gives him the Couture Birthday treatment.

Ok, this is from the Jets game preview:

Keys to the game:

Speed baby, speed! Even the best teams in the NHL (except Chicago of course) have trouble with the Jets fast transition and attack. The Red Wings seem especially vulnerable with a cast of aging stars.

Really? A cast of aging stars? Will this fallacious, cliche, old bull crap never end?

Technically the Wings have the 6th "oldest" team based on average age (28.390), however the difference between the Wings and the third youngest Jets (26.154) is a paltry 2.236 years. I'm (not) sorry, 2 years isn't a big enough difference to tout the "old, slow, decrepit, aging," thing as a.. well, a thing anymore. I know I'm asking for too much. Oh well. Moving on..

But hey, at least they're not going to boo Alfredsson this time.

Player To Boo Mercilessly

Todd Bertuzzi - He's big, he's mean, he's annoying!

Projected Jets Lines:

Andrew Ladd Bryan Little Devin Setoguchi
Evander Kane Olli Jokinen Blake Wheeler
Matt Halischuk Mark Scheifele Michael Frolik
Eric Tangradi James Wright Chris Thorburn

Tobias Enstrom Zach Bogosian
Grant Clitsome Dustin Byfuglien
Adam Pardy Keaton Ellerby

Ondrej Pavelec
Al Montoya

Paul Postma (leg, indefinitely)
Jacob Trouba (neck LTIR)
Jim Slater (sports hernia surgery, indefinitely)
Mark Stuart (hip, day-to-day)

Let's Go Red Wings!!!