7:30p ET, Joe Louis Arena
TV: MSG-B, BELL TV, FS-D+
Radio: 97.1 The Ticket
The Red Wings returned to Detroit after a dumb overtime loss to New Jersey on Friday in which they squandered a two-goal lead in the third period to only scrape a point out of a very boring Devils team. It was a frustrating game to watch because the Wings looked exactly like they were coming off a game the night before; doubly so because that Thursday game was a victory over the Atlantic-leading Montreal Canadiens, and in regulation no less. However, because of that dumb loss to Jersey, the Wings were able to extend their point streak to a 13th game, their longest since 2006(!).
Speaking of records, the Red Wings are looking to reach another milestone tonight at the Joe. Detroit's home win number at JLA currently sits at 799, and I'd sure like that to click over to 800 by beating up on the still-hapless Sabres, who still sit near the bottom of the Eastern Conference.
If we all remember what happened last time these two teams met, however, we're going to want a better performance from the men in red tonight. Sure, they won in their first shootout of the season, but the Wings had a 2-goal lead twice and still had to fight back to even head to extra time.
(We'll hope the guys in stripes tonight aren't as laughably bad as they were last game, too. Come on, ref!)
The Wings will still have to be mindful of penalties tonight, since the Sabres' power play is still second in the league at 23.4%, and it certainly bit them last time. It would be nice to see the Wings capitalize on their own man advantages, which was the source of their only two goals against the Devils, especially because for as good as Buffalo's PP is, their PK is equally woeful. As our own piyer97 pointed out in his most recent awesome systems article, the Wings need to start getting more aggressive with their power plays. We'll see if that happens tonight. I apologize in advance for jinxing the Wings into only drawing one PP tonight. It'll probably be an automatic delay of game call.
The lineup isn't expected to change much again save for who's starting in goal, since the team still has not called up any players from Grand Rapids in response to Arizona's double play of Drew Miller and Teemu Pulkkinen (aka twin killing, haha get it? No, that's not funny. They're out for a long time. RIP.) In addition, most fans' favorite for such a call is also currently injured, as Andreas Athanasiou sat out last night's game in Iowa with a lower-body injury, though it sounds like he is day-to-day and is simply working through being stiff and sore.
Red Wings Expected Lineups
|Dylan Larkin||Henrik Zetterberg||Justin Abdelkader|
|Darren Helm||Pavel Datsyuk||Brad Richards|
|Gustav Nyquist||Riley Sheahan||Tomas Tatar|
|Joakim Andersson||Luke Glendening||Tomas Jurco|
|Niklas Kronwall||Mike Green|
|Danny DeKeyser||Jonathan Ericsson|
|Brendan Smith||Alexey Marchenko|
|Petr Mrazek (starting)|
Scratches: Jakub Kindl
Injuries: Drew Miller (jaw), Teemu Pulkkinen (shoulder), Johan Franzen (concussion), Kyle Quincey (ankle)
Sabres Expected Lineups
|Jamie McGinn||Ryan O'Reilly||Sam Reinhart|
|Evander Kane||Jack Eichel||Matt Moulson|
|Zemgus Girgensons||Johan Larsson||Brian Gionta|
|Nicolas Deslauriers||David Legwand||Marcus Foligno|
|Josh Gorges||Rasmus Ristolainen|
|Carlo Colaiacovo||Zach Bogosian|
|Mike Weber||Cody Franson|
|Linus Ullmark (starting)|
|SABRES||THE MATCH-UP||RED WINGS|
|12-15-3 (27 pts; 6th in Atlantic)||Record||16-8-6 (38 pts; 2nd in Atlantic)|
|2.37 (25th in NHL)||Goals Per Game||2.57 (16th in NHL)|
|2.70 (19th)||Goals Against Per Game||2.53 (14th)|
|23.4% (2nd)||Power Play %||18.6% (15th)|
|76.0% (27th)||Penalty Kill %||81.2% (14th)|
|Ryan O'Reilly (10 goals)||Goals Leader||Larkin, Tatar, Nyquist (11 goals)|
|Ryan O'Reilly (27 points)||Points Leader||Henrik Zetterberg (24 points)|
- The Red Wings are 58-52-13-2 (W-L-T-OTL) all-time in the regular season against the Sabres.
- Last 10 Games: Detroit 6-0-4, Buffalo 4-5-1
- Petr Mrazek is 3-0-0 with a .864 SV% and 3.32 GAA in 4 career games against the Sabres.
Let's Go Red Wings!!!
Game Day Prediction Contest
Would you like to predict the outcome of the game and potentially become internet famous? Well you're in luck, because here's your opportunity. Here's how it works.
Make your game predictions on the winning team, final score, and who the Wings player of the game will be. Enter the required information into the form below using the formats indicated in the questions. If you don't use those formats, your answers will be disregarded. All submissions are timestamped and will be accepted only until the official game start time. All other submissions after that will be disregarded. Only one submission per person, please. POTG will be determined by the collective of WiiM writers.
Each correct winning team prediction is worth 1 point. Each correct player of the game prediction is worth 2 points. Each correct final score prediction is worth 5 points. If you get all three correct you'll receive 15 points.