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Game 2 - Red Wings at Lightning: Line Combinations, Gameday Updates, Key to the Game

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Blashill, as always, says that the lineup will be finalized after warmups. Here's what we're expecting though based on what the diggers reported. Delicate said the D-pairs were mixed up this morning, so we've got a guess on what it means for top & 2nd pair.

Best guess we've got is that Blashill is trying to spread out his shut-down defensemen (DK and Quincey) to answer for the Johnson's line dominance from game 1. Quincey looks like he'll switch over from the right to the left side being paired with Green. I'm guessing Ericsson will also switch over and leave DK as the left-side defenseman on that pairing as well.

Detroit Line Combinations

Forwards

Justin Abdelkader Pavel Datsyuk Henrik Zetterberg
Gus Nyquist Riley Sheahan Tomas Tatar
Darren Helm Brad Richards Dylan Larkin
Andreas Athanasiou Luke Glendening Joakim Andersson


Defensemen

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


Goaltenders

Jimmy Howard (starting)
Petr Mrazek

Power Play units:

  1. Datsyuk-Zetterberg-Abdelkader, Nyquist-Kronwall
  2. Tatar-Sheahan-Larkin, Richards-Green

Tampa Bay Line Combinations

Forwards

Alex Killorn Tyler Johnson Nikita Kucherov
Ondrej Palat Valtteri Filppula Jonathan Drouin
J.T. Brown Cedric Paquette Ryan Callahan
Mike Blunden Vladislav Namestnikov Brian Boyle


Defensemen

Victor Hedman Matt Carle
Jason Garrison Andrej Sustr
Braydon Coburn Nikita Nesterov


Goaltenders

Ben Bishop (starting)
Andrei Vasilevskiy


Keys to the Game:

Figuring out the Matchup Game

We know the players need to execute, but Blashill has to make the adjustments to put players in the right position to succeed. Last game the Tyler Johnson line torched the Red Wings with transition speed, despite playing against a line that had Dylan Larkin and Darren Helm on it. Pucks have to get deep and forwards need to make sure they're in position to get back, especially with Hedman on the ice.

Special Teams

The Mantha-less power play had a good process going in game 1, but process work is regular season stuff. Results are key. You have to make them pay if they're going to take penalties. On the other side of the coin, the penalty kill has to keep doing its job. There were some breaks in the last game that they got away with. Tighten up the switch-offs between the forwards in terms of who the pursuit guy is and who's watching the slot.

Systems Breakdown:

Prashanth's 4 part series has us covered.

1. Detroit's breakout vs. Tampa's forecheck

2. Tampa's breakout vs. Detroit's forecheck

3. Detroit's power play vs. Tampa's penalty kill

4. Tampa's power play vs. Detroit's penalty kill

Fun Facts!

A loss tonight puts the Red Wings down 2-0 in the series, which makes it so they have to win four games before losing two. The Wings accomplished this at the beginning of October, the beginning of November, the beginning of December, the beginning of January, near the end of March, and at the beginning of April.

A win tonight evens the series at 1-1 and would "steal" home ice advantage away from the Bolts, meaning that Detroit could guarantee themselves a win in the series by simply not losing any games at home.

Jash is a silly name.

Let's Go Red Wings.