Only four games remain on the Detroit Red Wings schedule; yet their playoff fate is still unknown. Detroit will be assured the number one seed in the West if they can notch 2 points in all four of their remaining games. However, even if Detroit were to come out victorious in the rest of their match-ups, the positioning of the 6th, 7th, and 8th ranked teams are still undefined. Only one point separates the Ducks, Oilers, and Wild in the Western Conference standings. Their first step to nabbing first place in the West will be taken Monday night, when the Red Wings host the Nashville Predators.
Wasn’t Wrestlemania scheduled for Sunday night? That is what the Red Wings must have been thinking as they returned home after their passionate meeting with the St. Louis Blues. With the 6-2 blowout, Detroit added two more points to their total, which now stands at 104. One of Detroit’s biggest concerns, one that is surely present on all playoff contender’s coach’s minds, will be to remain healthy. After the type of game they were forced to play on Saturday, they are probably happy to be taking on the Nashville Predators
The last time Detroit met up with Nashville, they were facing a team that had their sights set on making the playoffs. Those hopes have since vanished, as the Predators were knocked out of playoff contention on March 25th with a 1-1 ties against the Flyers. A team that was only 3 points out of a playoff spot on March 1st must now regroup to go at it again next season. On Saturday night, the Predators were handed another loss at the hands of the Atlanta Thrashers. It shall be interesting to see if the Predators can come crawling into the Joe with any passion.
The Red Wings are 2-1-1-0 against the Pred’s this season.
-Players To Watch-
Nashville- #29 Tomas Vokoun. Heart and soul of the Predator’s. He has participated in 65 games for Nashville this season, and his play has caused many to believe that he is the biggest reason the team had a shot at the playoffs.
Detroit- #17 Brett Hull. Notching another hat trick in the game against St. Louis, the old goat probably wouldn’t mind seeing his goal total exceed 40.
-Out or in Doubt-
Nashville- Andreas Johansson LW (Wrist/Questionable), David Legwan C (Collarbone/Out), Stu Grimson LW (Concussion/Out), Vladmir Orszagh RW (Shoulder/Questionable)
Detroit- Jiri Fischer D (Knee/Out)
-Between da Pipes-
Nashville- #29 Tomas Vokoun (25-27-11, 2.23 GAA, .917 SV%, 3 SO), #34 Wade Flaherty (0-1, 4.71 GAA, .852 SV%)
-Most Points This Season vs. Opposition-
Nashville- Adreas Johansson (3 goals, 3 assists) vs. Detroit
Detroit-#14 Brendan Shanahan (4 goals, 1 assist) vs. Nashville
The game will be televised locally at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time on FOX DETROIT.