The Detroit Red Wings end come back from eight days off to visit the San Jose Sharks in Game One of their Western Conference Semifinal matchup tonight.
Detroit last played on April 20, when they finished off a first-round sweep of the Phoenix Coyotes. The Sharks completed a 4-2 series win over the Los Angeles Kings on Monday.
Henrik Zetterberg will return to the Red Wings’ lineup, having recovered from his sprained left MCL during Detroit’s time off. Johan Franzen is also expected to play after missing Game Four against Phoenix with a sore ankle. Mike Modano and Drew Miller are the probable healthy scratches up front, with Jakub Kindl remaining the odd-man-out on defense.
Much is being made of San Jose’s scoring depth but Matt Saler points out that the Sharks had only 10 different goal scorers in their six first-round games, while Detroit had 13 scorers in four games.
The Sharks could be facing a goaltending controversy, as Antti Niemi was pulled twice in the first round while earning a 3.99 GAA and .863 save percentage. Detroit’s Jimmy Howard had a 2.50 GAA and a .915 save percentage.
FSD and Versus have the Game One TV coverage, with the game set to start at 10:00 PM.