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Three Questions: Wings-Canadiens

DRW.com's Michael Caples analyzes the Wings' fifth preseason game

Tuesday, 09.30.2008 / 1:20 PM ET / News
By Michael Caples  - Detroit Red Wings Staff Writer
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Three Questions: Wings-Canadiens
Are the Red Wings going to be healthy when the banner goes up?

A slapshot to the lower leg has veteran defenseman Chris Chelios joining an injured list that the Red Wings are not feeling too good about.  Captain Nick Lidstrom is still out of the line-up from the broken nose he suffered in the first preseason game.  Top line center Pavel Datsyuk is still tending to a sore groin, which means he isn’t getting any practice time with his new linemate Marian Hossa.  Forward Darren Helm crashed into the boards, cutting open his face, but fortunately he returned shortly.

I’m not sure how hurt Chelios is yet, but needless to say, the Red Wings need to get healthy quick, or their depth will be tested sooner than anybody hoped.

Could this game be a preview of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final?


I won’t say anything to jinx Detroit’s chances, but I will say that Montreal is one of the heavy favorites coming out of the Eastern Conference this season.  Judging from what we’ve seen from two shootout thrillers this preseason, I don’t blame the experts who think the Canadiens might have a little icing on the cake while they celebrate the franchise’s century mark.

Montreal will continue their ascent to the top of the Eastern Conference (they topped the regular season standings last year) provided that their superstar sophomore goaltender Carey Price plays the way he is capable of.  He cracked the line-up last year and the Canadiens had no choice but to keep putting him in the crease.  He had the play of the game Tuesday night, when a Brian Rafalski slapshot deflected up and floated over the young goalkeeper.  Price spun and reached backwards with his stick, swatting the puck, which was higher than the crossbar, away from a gaping net and an anxiously-awaiting Tomas Holmstrom – just one of his 28 saves in the 2-1 shootout win for Montreal.

How strong is Marian Hossa?

I’d love to throw the guy onto the squat machines and see how much weight he can handle.  He’s listed at 210 pounds, which is pretty sturdy, but doesn’t do him justice.  I’ve heard people label him as ‘soft’, and they’re dead wrong.  In the first two minutes of the game, Hossa cut across from the wing to center, just inside the blue line, and big Montreal defenseman Mike Komisarek decided to catch the speedy winger unprepared.  The end result?  Komisarek picking himself up off the ice.  A few minutes later, it was Ryan O’Bryne taking his chance on Hossa.  Same result.  Soft?  I don’t think so.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 82 13 37 -15 50
P. Datsyuk 66 16 33 7 49
D. Larkin 80 23 22 11 45
T. Tatar 81 21 24 4 45
G. Nyquist 82 17 26 -2 43
J. Abdelkader 82 19 23 -16 42
M. Green 74 7 28 -6 35
B. Richards 68 10 18 4 28
D. Helm 77 13 13 -2 26
N. Kronwall 64 3 23 -21 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 27 16 6 .921 2.33
J. Howard 14 14 5 .906 2.80