Red Wings: (8-5-3)
GAME TIME: 4:30 PM PST
TV: Canucks PPV
THE ENEMY: Winging It In Motown
UPDATE: 3:22 PM: I forgot to mention that Mathieu Schneider is in and O'Brien is out. C'mon Schneider! Burn your old team! Do it!
UPDATE: 11:12 AM: We told you the top 2 lines, and now the bottom 2 lines:
UPDATE: 11:05 AM PST: Chris Osgood and Kirk Maltby are ill and will not play tonight. The newest Wing, Drew Miller, who was plucked off the waiver wire by Detroit earlier this week, will play. Jimmy Howard, who has a 2-2-1 record and a .893 save percentage, will start in goal.
Detroit had a few days to think about their 5-1 loss to the lowly Leafs on November 7. On Wednesday they took all that aggression out on Steve Mason and the Blue Jackets, destroying them 9-1. Concerning if you are a Canucks fan who just watched Vancouver lay a rotten egg in St. Louis on Tuesday.
Niklas Kronwall scored 2 goal and 1 assist in the win. Justin Abdelkader scored twice. Pavel Datsyuk, Todd Bertuzzi, Daniel Cleary and Henrik Zetterberg all had 2 points each. Despite the loss to the Leafs, the Wings have won 4 of their last 5. They now return home, where they have a stellar record of 5-1-1. The Canucks, as Mike pointed out in terrific, terrifying and in-depth fashion below, are lousy on the road with a 3-7 record. They have not found a consistency in their game at all away from GM Place. Slow starts are killing them.
On October 27, the Wingnuts beat the Canucks 5-4 in Vancouver. It was a great game despite the loss, from an entertainment perspective. AV's boys blew 2-0 and 3-2 leads. They were outshot 42-26. Generally, the Canucks 'get up' for games against Detroit, and we should see a much better effort from them tonight.
Roberto Luongo returns! Let's see if he has any rust on him after missing several games with a rib injury. The biggest factor is the team. They have a style of play that works. Now they have to, to a man, go out there and play that game.
We'll keep you updated on any roster adjustments. It looks like Darcy Hordichuk will serve his 1-game suspension tonight, even though he feels he is innocent, saying Cam Janssen dropped the gloves first. We could very well see Jannik Hansen make his regular season debut tonight.
The Province reported yesterday that AV was employing the following top 2 lines in practice:
Mason Raymond-Henrik Sedin-Ryan Kesler
Alex Burrows-Kyle Wellwood-Mikael Samuelsson
Burrows and Wellwood are being given a chance to shake their offensive futility. They had better get it going and quick.
Datsyuk: "I gotta...I gotta stop and go to the bathroom!"
Zetterberg: "Just go, man!"