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Gameday Updates: Detroit Red Wings @ Washington Capitals: Line Combinations, Key Matchups

Washington Capitals v Detroit Red Wings't Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images

Nothing much out of Detroit today with the earlier start precluding a morning skate. The team practiced in New Jersey yesterday and Zetterberg took a maintenance day, but Blashill told the press he’d be ready to go today. The official Wings account did have this for us:

Same deal with the Caps, but I like this quote from Barry Trotz on one of Washington’s kids. Can’t imagine the response if Blashill says it though (J.J. here on this take, BTW)

Updated Lineups

Detroit Red Wings

Gustav Nyquist - Henrik Zetterberg - Anthony Mantha

Tomas Tatar - Dylan Larkin - Andreas Athanasiou

Darren Helm - Frans Nielsen – Justin Abdelkader

Tyler Bertuzzi – Luke Glendening - Martin Frk

Jonathan Ericsson – Trevor Daley

Niklas Kronwall – Mike Green

Danny DeKeyser – Nick Jensen

Jimmy Howard

Petr Mrazek

Power Play

PP1 – Athanasiou, Larkin, Bertuzzi, Green, Tatar

PP2 – Nyquist, Zetterberg, Mantha, Frk, Kronwall

Washington Capitals

Alex OvechkinNicklas BackstromTom Wilson

Jakub VranaEvgeny KuznetsovT.J. Oshie

Brett ConnollyLars EllerAlex Chiasson

Chandler StephensonJay BeagleDevante Smith-Pelly

Christian DjoosJohn Carlson

Matt Niskanen – Dimitri Orlov

Brooks OrpikMadison Bowey

Braden Holtby

Philipp Grubauer

Power Play

PP1 Oshie, Backstrom, Kuznetsov, Ovechkin, Carlson

PP2Connolly, Eller, Vrana, Niskanen, Orlov

Keys to the Game

Keep the Game Even

The Capitals power play may not be as scary as it once was, but any power play unit with Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov is dangerous. The Red Wings penalty kill, as shown in the Islanders game, is about as scary as a puppy right now. If the Red Wings want to win today they have to stay out of the box.

Keep the Scoring Going

Lost in the ugliness of that penalty kill in the Islanders game is the fact the Wings scored five goals and looked to be well on their way to a solid victory. Their sights were right on with some really nice set ups and perfect shots. That needs to continue, especially from Martin Frk and Anthony Mantha. It was great to see them both score.

Help Out the Goalie

The Red Wings do not have a stout defense. Everyone knows this at this point. At times they have done a good job of staying within themselves and really playing some impressive team defensive hockey. Then they inevitably turn the puck over right in front of their own net or at the blue line and hang the goalie out to dry. Washington is dangerous enough offensively without getting help from the other team.