Detroit Red Wings
2015-16 Ticket Plans Available Follow @DetroitRedWings on Twitter! Follow the Red Wings on Facebook! Follow @DetroitRedWings on Instagram! Follow OfficialDRW on Snapchat! Get Red Wings Email Updates Get Red Wings Text Updates Get the Detroit Red Wings Official Mobile App
 

 
  • PRINT
  • RSS

Defensive partners back together again

Familiarity should help with consistency for Lilja, Lebda

Friday, 03.5.2010 / 4:09 PM ET / News
By Michelle Crechiolo  - DetroitRedWings.com Intern
X
Share with your Friends


Defensive partners back together again
DETROIT – Now that the Red Wings are healthy again, they have finally found consistency on the blue line, which suits Brett Lebda fine.

The Red Wings defenseman will be rejoined with Andreas Lilja are a defensive duo beginning with Friday’s home game against the Nashville Predators.

“I think we know each other well,” Lebda said. “I think we’ve played together well in the past together, so I’m looking forward to it.”

Lilja agreed, saying “It’s a lot of fun. I played a bunch with Lebs and I know what he does, and he knows what I do.”

The tandem was together for must of the last two seasons when the Wings made runs to the Stanley Cup finals. Unfortunately for Lilja, post-concussion syndrome has plagued him since February 2009. He returned to the line-up on Monday in Colorado.

Lebda was a healthy scratch in Lilja’s first two games back. Wings coach Mike Babcock said that Jonathon Ericsson will be a healthy scratch for Friday's game, putting Lilja and Lebda back together.

Their play was the bright spot in an otherwise miserable game, making them the subject of Babcock’s praises.

“Obviously they’re real familiar,” babcock said. “I think (Ericsson) played real well with Lils last game, and when you go through the clips like I do, it’s very evident that there was lots of communication going on.

“The best Lebs has ever played here is when he played with Lils, because Lils talks so much, he’s a team leader that way, and ideally he’ll settle in and play a real good game for us.”

Although they have been teammates since 2005-06, Lebda and Lilja didn’t start playing together as a consistent pairing until their 2008 run to the Stanley Cup. Since Lilja has missed 61 of the team’s 63 games, Lebda hasn’t had a steady partner yet this season, seeing time with each of the other six defensemen.

Although all of the Wings’ current defenseman have all been a part of the roster for two years now and know each other well, Lebda is excited to skate with Lilja, saying it will be nice to have some consistency and play with the same guy all the time.

NO HARD FEELINGS: Friday is the first time Lilja will face off against Nashville’s Shea Weber since he was injured in their fight that took place Feb. 28, 2009.

Lilja is just treating it as a regular game, holding no grudge against Weber.

“It was a clean fight,” Lilja said. “He just got the best of it, that’s it.”

WESTERN CONFERENCE BATTLE:
Seventh-place Nashville is coming off a Thursday night home win over Los Angeles, which puts them five points ahead of eighth-place Detroit. Both Calgary and St. Louis are only a point behind the Wings in the Western Conference standings, which makes a win over the Predators all the more crucial.

While a five-point deficit seems high, the Wings still have a chance to make-up ground with 15 of their remaining 19 games being against Western Conference opponents.

“Obviously there’s a little more emphasis on this one, we’re chasing them for a playoff spot here,” Wings forward Patrick Eaves said. “So every game at this point is huge, and this game is one of them.

DOWN THE STRETCH: After putting his team through a tough practice on Thursday, Babcock made Friday’s morning skate optional for his players, and said that would be the norm through the remaining regular-season schedule.

“I don’t know if you saw our skate (Thursday), but I think that’s why we had optional,” Babcock said. “We’ll have a lot of that, we’ll either not practice or optional.”

The Wings have 19 games left to play over a 37-day period, meaning that almost all of their games will be played either every other day or back-to-back.



SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
H. Zetterberg 77 17 49 -6 66
P. Datsyuk 63 26 39 12 65
T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
G. Nyquist 82 27 27 -11 54
J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
P. Mrazek 16 9 2 .918 2.38

DetroitRedWings.com is the official Web site of the Detroit Red Wings. Detroit Red Wings and DetroitRedWings.com are trademarks of the Detroit Red Wings. NHL, the NHL Shield and the word mark NHL Winter Classic are registered trademarks and Original Six is a trademark of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 Detroit Red Wings and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.
© NHL 2015. All Rights Reserved.

 
Advertise/SponsorshipsOlympia Entertainment | Code of Conduct | Privacy Policy | AdChoices | Employment | Contact Us | NHL.com Terms of Use | Site Map