Sunday, April 14, 2013

Preview: With Playoff Hopes Dimming, Detroit Desperately Needs Win

Detroit (19-15-7) @ Nashville (15-19-8)

We've already hit mid April and for the first time in over two decades, Wings fans are legitimately scared.  Detroit's tenuous hold on 8th spot in the West was finally ripped away when the Dallas Stars won their latest match to take the seed from the Wings through tie-break rules.  It is now imperative that Detroit win some hockey games to keep pace with not only Dallas, but also Phoenix and Columbus, who are all swarming.

Tonight, the Red Wings can reclaim 8th with a win over divisional foes the Nashville Predators.  It's the first game of a one-on-two-off week for Detroit, who will play Calgary on Wednesday, and finish the week in Vancouver against the Canucks.  Detroit and Nashville have split the first two games of the series, the most recent game being a blowout by Detroit, who crushed the Preds 4-0.  A similar effort tonight for the Red Wings would be just what the doctor--or in this case, the Geek--ordered, since Detroit's recent games have lacked offensive punch.

With Nashville pretty much out of the playoff picture now, they will likely look to play the role of giant-killer and try to help end Detroit's playoff appearance streak.  If the boys in the Winged Wheel want to have a chance at the big dance, they need to win games like this.  These are the teams you're supposed to beat, and when you find ways not to, well...the playoff window just shuts a little bit more each time.

With a concerted effort from all four lines and communication between the blueliners, Detroit has every chance to walk out of Tennessee with two points in their pockets.  We'll see if they're up to the task very soon.