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Red Wings vs. Maple Leafs Line Combinations, Gameday Updates, Key Matchups

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Just win, baby.

No, seriously.. Detroit needs to win this game. No excuses. It's the best way to gain distance from the Boston Bruins before the Red Wings go head-to-head with them. The St. Louis Blues did us no favors last night. The Red Wings are very much in control of their own destiny at this point.

Who knows what could happen tonight. The Leafs could play the spoiler role, or they could play the "let's tank this shit out" role and try to preserve the best possible shot at 1st overall. Not that it matters, Edmonton is getting Auston Matthews. That's right, another promising hockey talent's career is going to be ruined by the Oilers.

Did I point out how big this game is? Not as big as the next two, but still pretty damn important. Here are the (not-so) updated line combinations:

Line Combinations

Red Wings 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


Red Wings Defensemen

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


Red Wings 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

Maple Leafs Forwards

Michael Grabner Nazem Kadri Brad Boyes
Colin Greening William Nylander PA Parenteau
Tobias Lindberg Tyler Bozak Kaspery Kapanen
Brooks Laich Frederik Gauthier Byron Froese


Maple Leafs Defensemen

Morgan Rielly Martin Marincin
Jake Gardiner Frank Corrado
Andrew Campbell TJ Brennan


Maple Leafs Goaltenders

Garret Sparks (starting)
Jonathan Bernier


Keys to the Game:

Mike Babcock

Listen, just let us take this one, Uncle Mike. You guys need a better draft pick, we want to win games and be happy.. Just do it you big dork.

Protecting the damn lead

The Red Wings didn't blow their lead over the Wild last night, but they came pretty damn close. What gives? This has been the story all season long. Take the lead, and stop making it close for crying out loud.

Gustav Nyquist - Riley Sheahan - Tomas Tatar

This line was on fire last night. They'll need to have a strong outing against whichever AHL players Toronto puts them against. Keep scoring, keep going. Be a reason the team still has life.

Fun Facts!

  • If the Detroit Red Wings lose tonight, I am going to be very angry at the world.