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Blues at Red Wings: Gameday Updates, Line Combinations, Key Matchups

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Blashill decided to shake things up with some new forward lines yesterday at practice. Today at the morning skate, we learned the new defensive pairs thanks to Niklas Kronwall's injury.

I think this is the way to go. Quincey and DeKeyser are familiar with one another. Marchenko is solid defensively and can hopefully make Ericsson better. Meanwhile, Smith and Green have been paired together a lot lately. Keep the continuity there. Smith will take Kronwall's place on the power play. This is great news.


Line Combinations

Red Wings Lineup

Forwards

Gus Nyquist Henrik Zetterberg Justin Abdelkader
Dylan Larkin Pavel Datsyuk Tomas Tatar
Brad Richards Riley Sheahan Teemu Pulkkinen
Darren Helm Luke Glendening Tomas Jurco

Defensemen

Kyle Quincey Danny DeKeyser
Brendan Smith Mike Green
Jonathan Ericsson Alexey Marchenko

Goaltenders

Petr Mrazek
Jimmy Howard

Scratches: Joakim Andersson

Injuries: Johan Franzen, Drew Miller, Niklas Kronwall

Power-play units:

  1. Nyquist-Zetterberg-Datsyuk-Abdelkader (net front)-Green
  2. Tatar-Pulkkinen-Larkin (net front)-Richards-Smith

Blues Lineup

Forwards

Alex Steen Paul Stastny Troy Brouwer
Robby Fabbri Jori Lehtera Vladimir Tarasenko
Patrik Berglund David Backus Ty Rattie
Scottie Upshall Kyle Brodziak Ryan Reaves

Defensemen

Jay Bouwmeester Alex Pietrangelo
Kevin Shattenkirk Colton Parayko
Joel Edmundson Andre Benoit

Goaltenders

Brian Elliott
Jordan Binnington

Fun Facts!

Red Wings all-time record against St. Louis: 122-111-37-8 (W-L-T-OTL)

Red Wings goals for per game (GF/G) against the Blues: 3.22

Red Wings goals against per game (GA/G) against the Blues: 3.06

Key Matchups

Blues PP vs Red Wings PP

Entering tonight's game, the Blues have the 8th ranked power play in the NHL. I'm sure you've heard by now, but Drew Miller is basically done for the season after surgery on his meniscus revealed some damage to his ACL. He's out 4-6 months. Miller, regardless of what the advanced stats say, was a solid PKer for the Wings. They're not doomed without him, but that was his key role on the team. It'll be interesting how the team handles things tonight and moving forward. We should see a lot more Larkin on the PK (which I personally believe is a good thing). Speed kills.

Whomever gets matched up against Vladimir Tarasenko

Tarasenko is one of the premiere offense players in the league these days. He's a top 5 goal scorer in the NHL and just outside the top 5 in points as well. The makeshift Wings defense will need to always be aware of where he's at on the ice. I except the Nyquist-Zetterberg-Abdelkader line to get the duty of matching up against him. Shut down Tarasenko and the Wings should have a good chance to take two points tonight.

Let's Go Red Wings.