Saturday, February 2, 2013

Pre-Game: Detroit Hopes to Keep Rolling in Columbus

Detroit (4-2-1) @ Columbus (2-5-1)

The Red Wings should be caught between fatigue and satisfaction after avenging their home opening loss last night against the St. Louis Blues, so this evening's matchup against the Columbus BlueJackets could be very interesting.  With Detroit sitting in the middle of the conference, another win tonight would be extremely uplifting, bringing the Wings within 2 points of the Blues for 2nd in the Central.  Can the Red Wings stave off exhaustion in the tail-end of this back-to-back, or will the BlueJackets seize on a rare opportunity to hand Detroit a defeat?

The Red Wings will be looking for another great outing from its top lines tonight.  Henrik Zetterberg notched a hat trick against the Blues and Pavel Datsyuk scored the game-winning goal, while teammate Damien Brunner has been on a 5-game point streak.  Now that the big guns are firing, the defense has had a lot of weight lifted from its shoulders and has been able to get into more of a rhythm--nothing perfect, mind you, but it's a start.

There are no surprises in the lineup tonight, thought thankfully we will see Kent Huskins play tonight.  After a nasty hit from David Backes, Huskins confirmed that he feels fine and should be more than able to play this evening.  Jimmy Howard, who has been better than his stat lines would suggest, will start again tonight for the Wings.