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Red Wings vs. Wild Line Combinations, Gameday Updates, Key Matchups

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Wings took the ice for their morning skate and our spies were able to obtain information from an increasingly irritable and block-happy digging crew despite beat reporters' desire to apparently prevent Wings fans from seeing what they're reporting.

Many Bothans died to bring you news that Howard was occupying the starter's net and that the lines were the same as how the team practiced on Thursday (including the Richards-for-Mantha line switch that so many of our readers glibly pointed out should mean good thing for Mantha's ice time now that he's on Luke "I play 20 minutes per night" Glendening's wing).

Despite the crap given, I do want to point out that the diggers did ask Blashill to elaborate on his reasons why Brendan Smith remains scratched and that Blashill more than once declined to do so, giving only what appears to be a curt non-answer:

Line Combinations

Forwards

Justin Abdelkader Henrik Zetterberg Dylan Larkin
Darren Helm Pavel Datsyuk Brad Richards
Tomas Tatar Riley Sheahan Gustav Nyquist
Andreas Athanasiou Luke Glendening Anthony Mantha


Defensemen

Danny DeKeyser Kyle Quincey
Niklas Kronwall Alexey Marchenko
Jonathan Ericsson Mike Green


Goaltenders

Jimmy Howard(starting)
Petr Mrazek

Power Play units:

  1. Nyquist-Zetterberg-Larkin, Abdelkader (net front), Kronwall
  2. Tatar-Datsyuk-Mantha (net front), Richards, Green

Wild Expected Lineup

Forwards

Zach Parise Mikko Koivu Charlie Coyle
Jason Zucker Mikael Granlund Thomas Vanek
Nino Niederreiter Erik Haula Jason Pominville
Jordan Schroeder Jarret Stoll Justin Fontaine

Defensemen

Ryan Suter Jared Spurgeon
Marco Scandella Jonas Brodin
Mike Reilly Mathew Dumba

Goaltenders

Devan Dubnyk
Darcy Kuemper

Keys to the Game:

Stop sucking

No, seriously. Whether Blashill puts the right guys out there or not (hint: he won't), the players have to make it work. We're going to have all summer to discuss why things didn't work and point various fingers (again and again), but tonight in the smallest sample possible, the players have to do whatever job they're given, even if it's not ideal.

Tend the damn goal

This isn't specifically aimed at whomever is going to be starting, but it's obvious that guy has to do his job damn well. Outside of that though, his team absolutely has to do better than the incompetent donkey-grope that has been net-front defense lately.

Keep scoring on the power play

Hey, if there's one thing they're doing well, it's scoring on the PP. Keep that up.

Fun Facts!

  • No more fun facts until morale improves.