Game Day Updates
Tyler Bertuzzi - Dylan Larkin - Robby Fabbri
Anthony Mantha - Valtteri Filppula - Filip Zadina
Andreas Athanasiou - Luke Glendening - Darren Helm
Adam Erne - Frans Nielsen - Justin Abdelkader
Scratches: Christoffer Ehn - Brendan Perlini
Patrik Nemeth - Mike Green
Trevor Daley - Filip Hronek
Alex Biega - Madison Bowey
Alex Iafallo - Anze Kopitar - Dustin Brown
Adrian Kempe - Blake Lizotte - Austin Wagner
Kyle Clifford - Jeff Carter - Trevor Lewis
Matt Luff - Michael Amadio - Tyler Toffoli
Joakim Ryan - Drew Doughty
Ben Hutton - Matt Roy
Kurtis MacDermid - Sean Walker
Keys to the Game
1. Control the Play
The Red Wings have won the last two games. Against Winnipeg they needed some puck luck to push them ahead. Against Montreal it took a strong goaltending performance. To keep the newly established winning streak alive they’ll have to start turning the play in their favour at 5 on 5.
Los Angeles is a team sitting at the bottom of the standings along with the Red Wings but that doesn’t make them an easy team to control the puck against. LA’s stats actually suggest they’re a top tier puck control team as they’re in the top five of the league in both CF% and Expected GF% according to the site Natural Stat Trick. The Wings are a bottom five team in both categories. So that makes the goal to control the game a lofty challenge in this one but if they’re to keep winning games they’re going to have to control play better.
2. Give Comrie Some Help
As noted the victory over Montreal last night involved a terrific game from Jonathan Bernier. With Eric Comrie getting the start tonight, it’s not fair to expect him to do the same, especially after he was left out to dry in his previous start for the team. The rest of the lineup owes him a bit after that.
So the Wings need to get a quick start and provide some goal support for the young netminder and limit the scoring chances against. Given the replenished depth at forward Detroit has, they should have at minimum two lines that are dangerous often in this game.
3. Win the Special Teams Play
Given the Kings strong possession numbers as previously noted, the Wings can really help their cause in this game by winning the special teams battle. The Wings powerplay has been relatively hot lately so they just need to maintain the 25% or so clip they’ve been operating at. Allow triggermen Mantha, Hronek, and Zadina to get open looks and test Campbell on the advantage.
On the other side, Detroit needs to have a strong penalty kill and likely will need to keep the Kings from scoring a single powerplay goal in this one. The Wings likely won’t have the breathing room available to lose the 5 vs 4 play. The best way to do that is to play disciplined and earn more man advantage looks than the Kings.