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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, February 17th (All times eastern)

Detroit Red Wings (37-16-6) at Phoenix Coyotes (25-30-3), 9 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The Detroit Red Wings continue their quest for another Central Division title tonight in Arizona, where the club will wrap up a three-game road trip with a showdown against the Phoenix Coyotes.

Winners of seven of their last nine games, the Red Wings have closed within a single point of Nashville for first place in the Central. Detroit has captured the division crown in each of the last five seasons.

The Predators, who also hold a slim edge on the Wings for the top seed in the Western Conference, just made a bold move to counter Detroit's surge. Nashville acquired former Hart Trophy winner Peter Forsberg from Philadelphia in a three-player trade on Thursday.

The Red Wings started this road swing with a startling 6-1 loss to the Flyers on Monday, but rebounded with a 3-1 victory over a strong Dallas club two nights later. Henrik Zetterberg scored the tiebreaking goal with 4:36 remaining in the third period and assisted on Detroit's two other tallies.

Pavel Datsyuk had a goal and an assist and Mathieu Schneider also scored for the Red Wings. Chris Osgood stopped 17-of-18 shots in his first action since suffering a broken finger on January 26.

Detroit is expected to have No. 1 netminder Dominik Hasek back between the pipes tonight. The veteran has missed the team's last four contests with tendinitis in his right wrist.

Hasek's last start came against the Coyotes on February 7. He made 20 saves to help the Red Wings to a 4-2 triumph.

That loss began a string of four consecutive defeats for Phoenix, which fell in overtime at home to Anaheim its most recent time out. Teemu Selanne scored on the power play 1:53 into the extra period to give the Ducks a 5-4 decision.

Recently-acquired Mathias Tjarnqvist had a goal for the Coyotes, while Owen Nolan, Keith Ballard and Oleg Saprykin also lit the lamp in the loss. Curtis Joseph finished with 35 saves on the night.

Phoenix played without top defenseman Ed Jovanovski due to an elbow injury, and the All-Star blueliner will not play tonight as well.

Detroit is 3-0-0 against the Coyotes this season and handed Phoenix a 5-1 setback at Jobing.com Arena in January. The Red Wings have also emerged victorious in each of their last three trips to Glendale.

02/17 10:54:49 ET


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