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Red Wings vs. Blackhawks — Gameday Updates, Projected Lineups and Keys to the Game

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Detroit Red Wings v Chicago Blackhawks Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Gameday Updates

This is what Bobby Ryan had to say about playing for the Red Wings during an interview with Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press:

I feel fortunate I’ve gotten to play here, wear the Winged Wheel. Everything about it has been an incredible experience, so if there is an opportunity to come back in the summer... it will be very high on my list. I absolutely love it here.

This is great news, not only because I’ve liked what Ryan has brought to the lineup this year, but it seems Steve Yzerman is having an impact on the veteran players. This will be key to the Wings re-shaping this franchise and getting back to contention if they can coax more veterans into signing here.

Late Update: Could this be the night that Svechnikov gets in the lineup? We’ll see! - Peter

Projected Lineups

Detroit Red Wings

Forwards

(Plugging in Svechnikov for Brome. No clue if that’ll happen - Peter)

Robby Fabbri — Dylan Larkin — Anthony Mantha

Bobby Ryan — Vladislav Namestnikov — Filip Zadina

Evgeny Svechnikov — Valtteri Filppula — Sam Gagner

Darren Helm — Luke Glendening — Adam Erne

Defense

Dan DeKeyser — Filip Hronek

Marc Staal — Jon Merrill

Christian Djoos — Patrik Nemeth

Goalies

Jonathan Bernier

Thomas Greiss

Chicago Blackhawks

Forwards

Alex DeBrincat — Pius Suter — Patrick Kane

Brandon Hagel — Lucas Wallmark — Dominik Kubalik

Philipp Kurashev — Carl Soderberg — Mattias Janmark

Matthew Highmore — David Kampf — Ryan Carpenter

Defense

Duncan Keith — Ian Mitchell

Connor Murphy — Nikita Zadorov

Calvin de Haan — Adam Boqvist

Goalies

Malcolm Subban

Kevin Lankinen

Keys to the Game

Contain Patrick Kane

Considering the hot start that Kane has had this year — 31 points in 21 games — it’s impossible to think you can shut him down completely. He’s a dynamic threat anywhere on the ice and the lifeline of this Hawks offense, but if the Wings can manage to contain him in any capacity, their odds of winning increase. Kane has five points in four games against Detroit this year, so the visiting squad will have their work cut out for them.

A Powerplay Goal...Anyone?

The Wings have failed to score on their last 40 powerplay chances...40! This is getting ugly and as was alluded to earlier in the week, nobody seems to be able to take on the role of a strong net front presence. Tyler Bertuzzi seems to be deeply missed in that role, but somebody has to step up here, whether it’s Anthony Mantha or shuffling things up with a guy like Luke Glendening to pester the goaltender. Whatever the case, Detroit is currently on pace to break the Tampa Bay Lightning’s 1997-98 record of just a 9.35 PP% — yikes!

Be the Aggressor

Detroit has won two of their last three games, but let’s keep in perspective that they’re still being heavily outplayed at 5-on-5. Over their last four games, the Wings are operating at less than 50 CF% at even strength and considering the powerplay is in shambles, this won’t continue as a recipe for success. The Wings need to be the more aggressive team today and take the play to the Hawks. Be hard on the forecheck and generate some high danger chances, an area of improvement for the Wings as they rank 20th in the NHL at 48.55 HDCF%.