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Morning Skate: Red Wings at Stars Preview

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

7:00p ET, American Airlines Center

Dallas, TX

TV: Fox Sports Detroit, NBCSN

Radio: 97.1 The Ticket

Stars Blog: Defending Big D

Detroit Red Wings Tickets

Ladies and gentlemen… this is it.

Time for the Red Wings to put up or shut up. One game and everything is on the line. It's as close to a game 7 as you can get without it actually being one. A win tonight against the Stars and the 21 season playoff streak is extended and the Wings have a chance to play for Lord Stanley's Cup.

Detroit is riding a three game winning streak into the game and has been playing some of their best hockey of the season. Johan Franzen is playing like the Mule of old. Pavel Datsyuk is Pavel Datsyuk. The kids have taken over the 3rd line. Patrick Eaves and the 4th line have been at their best lately. And, holy crap, was the penalty kill good last game. Cory Emmerton and company are getting shit done. Now is the best time for them to be clicking. Just don't stop now, please.

All the Red Wings really need is at least one point to guarantee a playoff spot. Get to overtime and you're in. Get two points and you have a chance to take the 7th seed and avoid the Blackhawks. There's also a chance that the Avalanche beat the Wild, which would give the Wings a playoff spot even if they lost tonight, but if we've learned anything over the last 21 seasons, the Avs suck, so don't count on them for anything.

Bottom line… Just win.

The Expected Lineup

Henrik Zetterberg - Pavel Datsyuk - Justin Abdelkader

Johan Franzen - Valtteri Filppula - Daniel Cleary

Gustav Nyquist - Joakim Andersson - Damien Brunner

Patrick Eaves - Cory Emmerton - Jordin Tootoo


Niklas Kronwall - Jonathan Ericsson

Brendan Smith - Kyle Quincey

Danny DeKeyser - Jakub Kindl


Jimmy Howard (starting)

Jonas Gustavsson

Scratches: Ian White, Brian Lashoff and Carlo Colaiacovo

Injuries: Drew Miller (hand), Mikael Samuelsson (upper body), Todd Bertuzzi (back) and Darren Helm (back)

23-16-8 (54 pts; 7th in West) Record 22-21-4 (48 pts; 11th in West)
2.53 (19th in NHL) Goals Per Game 2.72 (11th in NHL)
2.34 (7th) Goals Against Per Game 2.94 (24th)
18.8% (15th) Power Play % 17.3% (17th)
81.4% (13th) Penalty Kill % 80.6% (16th)
Pavel Datsyuk (15 goals) Goal Leader 2 tied with 12 goals
Pavel Datsyuk (46 points) Points Leader Jamie Benn (33 points)

  • The Red Wings are 106-97-34-5 (W-L-T-OTL) all-time against the Dallas Stars franchise.
  • Dallas has lost their last four games.
  • The Wings are 3-3-1 on Saturdays this season.
  • Last time these two teams met was way back on January 29. The Wings won 4-1. FIlppula (2), Zetterberg and Brunner were your goal scorers.
  • Detroit is 5-2-3 in their last 10 games. Dallas is 5-4-1.
  • Howard is 5-5-1 with a 2.37 GAA and .917 SV% in 11 career regular starts against the Stars.
Prediction: Wings win 4-1.

Let's Go Red Wings.