10:00p EST, Honda Center
Radio: 97.1 FM The Ticket // 1270 AM CBS Sports Radio
Twelve games to go in the Red Wings season. It has been fun at times, heartbreaking at others and frustrating more than anything else. The current losing streak hammered down the final nail in the Wings long shot hopes of a playoff push and the current West Coast road trip has hammered home to fans how nice it is to not have to deal with these late night starts more often anymore. Tonight the Wings will look to play spoiler some more as they head into the Pond, I mean the Honda Center, to take on the Anaheim Ducks.
Anaheim is similar yet different from the teams Wings fans loved to hate for the last 12 or so years. They still have familiar (despised) faces in Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry playing important roles but it is newer players like Rickard Rakell and Adam Henrique leading the way offensively (although Getzlaf and Perry are two and three on the team in points). Jakob Silfverberg and Ondrej Kase have also put together nice seasons as secondary scorers and have picked up the slack left by Ryan Kesler’s disappointing season. The blue line has been a big source of offensive success for Anaheim as well with four defensemen contributing at least 25 points…and this is after they lost Shea Theadore to Vegas and traded Sami Vatanen (who both have at least 20 points for their respective team as well). Coincidently, those four defensemen are all under the age of 27. This is what I can only hope Detroit’s defense can look like in a couple years. In net, John Gibson has had the lion’s share of starts over Ryan Miller with both posting identical .926 save percentages. This is a really good Anaheim Ducks team that can skate, are dangerous from the blue line out, have some decent scoring depth along three forward lines and their top two defensive pairings and have had steady goaltending from both their starter and backup.
On paper this is not a game I expect the Red Wings to win. Anaheim can keep up with the speed of the Red Wings younger forwards and the shall we say exuberance for “old school hockey” will put a ton of pressure on a very weak Red Wings blue line. All that said, draft pick be dammed for a night. As long as Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Ryan Kesler are on the Ducks and Henrik Zetterberg is on the Red Wings there is always the chance of a classic Ducks meltdown, something I would love to see (tomorrow morning when I watch the replay).
Detroit Red Wings
After playing last night who knows what, if any, changes the Red Wings will make to the lineup besides Jimmy Howard in net. Hopefully we will have a better idea for you in the Update. For now, we will go with how they started out last night in LA.
Tyler Bertuzzi - Henrik Zetterberg – Gustav Nyquist
Anthony Mantha – Dylan Larkin – Darren Helm
Andreas Athanasiou – Frans Nielsen – Justin Abdelkader
Evgeny Svechnikov – Luke Glendening – Martin Frk
Jonathan Ericsson – Trevor Daley
Danny DeKeyser – Mike Green
Niklas Kronwall – Nick Jensen
Scratches: David Booth, Luke Witkowski, Xavier Ouellet
Injuries: Johan Franzen (LTIR)
Lineup from Daily Faceoff
Rickard Rakell – Ryan Getzlaf – Corey Perry
Andrew Cogliano – Ryan Kesler – Jakob Silfverberg
Nick Ritchie – Adam Henrique – Ondrej Kase
Chris Kelly – Derek Grant – J.T. Brown
Cam Fowler – Brandon Montour
Josh Manson – Hampus Lindholm
Francois Beauchemin – Kevin Bieksa
Injuries: Patrick Eaves
Game Day Prediction Contest
Would you like to predict the outcome of the game and potentially become internet famous? Well you're in luck, because here's your opportunity. Here's how it works.
First off, if you don't have an SBN Username, make one! We'd love to have you, plus it's much easier to track your predictions season-long. Then make your guess on the winning team, final score, and who the Red Wings player of the game will be. Enter the required information into the form below using the formats indicated. If you don't use those formats, your answers will be disregarded. All submissions are timestamped and will be accepted only until the official game start time. Only one submission per person, please. The Red Wings POTG will be determined by the collective of WiiM writers.
Each correct winning team prediction is worth 1 point. Each correct player of the game prediction is worth 3 points. Each correct final score prediction is worth 5 points. If you get all three correct, you'll receive 15 points.