NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Tuesday, February 21st
(All times Eastern)
Detroit Red Wings (41-17-2) at Chicago Blackhawks (32-21-7), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Setting records on home ice is nice, but the Red Wings know
it won't mean anything if the season doesn't end with the lifting of the
Detroit will likely have to win a few road games for that to happen and it
looks to move above .500 away from Motown this evening against the suddenly-
surging Chicago Blackhawks.
Having already set the single-season record for most consecutive wins on home
ice, the Red Wings bested another mark on Sunday with a 3-2 win over the
visiting Sharks. Detroit's 23rd straight win as the host broke Boston's record
set over multiple seasons. The Bruins won 22 straight at home to close out the
1929-30 season before beginning winning their first two home games the
The Red Wings got goals from Henrik Zetterberg, Drew Miller and Darren Helm on
Sunday to finish off a perfect six-game homestand and improve to 26-2-1 in
Detroit this season. They did lose games in Edmonton and Phoenix prior to the
residency and own just a 15-15-1 mark on the road.
Still, Detroit is tops in the NHL with 84 points, two more than Northwest
"It was a big game for us because to be a really good hockey team you have to
pass the big tests," said Helm. "I thought we played well tonight and we're
able to keep things rolling."
Joey MacDonald started all six games of the homestand and extended his
personal winning streak with 31 saves. MacDonald has been filling in for the
injured Jimmy Howard, but the No. 1 is ready to return tonight from a broken
right index finger. Howard hasn't played since Feb. 2, but is still tied for
the league lead in wins with 32.
MacDonald, meanwhile, was recalled from the minors when Howard was hurt, but
will be sticking around as the backup after Detroit placed Ty Conklin on
Detroit could also have Danny Cleary back on the ice tonight after he missed
the final five games of the homestand due to a left knee issue.
A week ago, the Blackhawks wouldn't have seemed like much of a threat to the
Red Wings as a 3-2 loss to the Predators was their ninth in a row. However,
Chicago has rebounded to win three straight, taking the final two contests of
a nine-game road trip before kicking off a three-game homestand on Sunday with
a 3-1 win over the Blues.
Corey Crawford allowed a first-period goal, but settled down to make 29 saves.
The Blackhawks then ensured their netminder a victory when Duncan Keith and
Dave Bolland scored in the third to put Chicago ahead. Marian Hossa capped the
scoring with an empty-net tally.
"It was a big game for us and a very good game for us in a lot of ways," said
Keith. "We trailed much of the game, but we stuck to the plan and were able to
grind it out for the win."
It was Chicago's sixth victory in its past seven at home, where it is 20-6-4
this season, and the club is now trying to win four straight overall for the
first time since a five-game run from Dec. 8-18. The Blackhawks are looking
to move back up the Western Conference ladder as they have fallen to sixth
overall, three points behind fifth-seeded Nashville.
The Red Wings have won two straight in overtime versus the Blackhawks and have
won three of the past four encounters overall. They have also captured five of
their last seven trips to Chicago.
02/21 10:46:47 ET