Time: 7:00pm ET
Place: LCA - Detroit, MI
Radio: 97.1 FM The Ticket
Rangers Blog: Habs Eyes on the Prize
If you looked at the Atlantic Division standings today, you’d see one thing: the Detroit Red Wings in second place with a 7-3-2 record. While it’s a little too preemptive to start thinking about the playoffs, this strong start is nothing short of encouraging. On the flip side, the Montreal Canadiens are treading water in their flop era, posting a putrid 5-6-1 record. Still, to let ones’ guard down is the quickest way to ensure failure — and with the quiet effectiveness of players like Nick Suzuki, the last thing the Red Wings want to do is get confident.
Still, the Habs are mired in a three-game losing streak, letting in 13 goals in that span. Suzuki (15 points in 12 games) is tied with Dylan Larkin and Dominik Kubalik in production. Cole Caufield (14 points) and Kirby Dach (10 points) make up the supporting cast of the team, followed by a ragtag group headlined by Sean Monahan and Josh Anderson (who is suspended currently). As of right now, all eyes are on Juraj Slafkovsky (three points in nine games) before the start of tonight’s game. If the 2022 first overall pick plays his tenth game tonight, he’ll burn the first year of his entry level contract. Doing so would signal that the Habs see a future in Slafkovsky this season. Having said that, many believe that a little bit of seasoning with the Laval Rocket might do him a world of good. Tonight will be the determining factor on the up-and-comer.
As far as players on Detroit’s side that are worth watching, Lucas Raymond appears to be on somewhat of a hot streak, with three goals and four points in his last four games. Elite First Line Player Adam Erne has seven points in 12 games, and, if the trend continues, he’ll get his eighth tonight. All in all, this should be a great opportunity for the Wings to try to cement the systems they’ve been building while finding out what works and what doesn’t. It’ll be fun!