I’m going to try and do these for as many playoff games as possible with updates as games go along. Feel free to drop in your comments as you watch either below or using the #BShelf hashtag on twitter or on our facebook page.
In terms of exciting series, this may be the most underrated in my mind as I think the Preds will be our Western Conference champions while the Red Wings are a whole other type of animal in crunch time. These are two beasts of the Central Division and I think this could be a dandy series assuming people peel themselves away from the Philadelphia-Pittsburgh series.
- Pekka Rinne and Jimmy Howard will be the dueling ‘tenders in this series and will be charged with fending off pretty talented opposition.
Jimmy Howard’s line vs. the Predators this season: 2-2-0; 2.27 GAA; .908 SV%
Pekka Rinne’s line vs. the Red Wings this season: 3-3-0; 2.67 GAA; .920 SV%
For those wondering about Howard only playing four games, bear in mind he was injured mid-season and Joey MacDonald was forced to fill in.
- Darren Helm returns to the Detroit lineup for the first time since March 17. He’ll skate between Dan Cleary and Drew Miller.
- Hal Gill is out of the lineup for the Predators. He was a game time decision coming into the game.
Expected Lineups (per morning skates):
Johan Franzen — Pavel Datsyuk — Todd Bertuzzi
Valtteri Filppula — Henrik Zetterberg — Jiri Hudler
Danny Cleary — Justin Abdelkader — Drew Miller
Gustav Nyquist — Cory Emmerton — Tomas Holmstrom
Nicklas Lidstrom — Jonathan Ericsson
Niklas Kronwall — Brad Stuart
Kyle Quincey — Ian White
Sergei Kostitsyn –- Mike Fisher –- Martin Erat
Andrei Kostitsyn –- David Legwand –- Alexander Radulov
Gabriel Bourque –- Nick Spaling — Patric Hornqvist
Matt Halischuk –- Paul Gaustad –- Craig Smith
Shea Weber — Ryan Suter
Jack Hillen — Roman Josi
Francis Boullion — Kevin Klein
Two other useful things:
Red Wings twitter for updates.
Predators twitter for updates.
After one period…
- These two squads look really evenly matched but I’ve been impressed with Nashville’s puck possession, particularly up high. A nice observation…
The league’s 2nd worst Fenwick team is skating circles around the league’s 3rd best Fenwick team. #DeathOfFancyStats
— draglikepull (@draglikepull) April 12, 2012
- Darren Helm returned to the Wings lineup for the first time since mid-March but will not return to the game after sustaining a wrist injury.
- Paul Gaustad scored one of the uglier goals you’re going to see, but hey, in playoff hockey you take what you can get.
-The Red Wings looked a lot stronger in the second and pushed the Preds back on their heels a bit. Henrik Zetterberg tied the game on a pure hustle play to the crease after a scramble.
-The teams went back and forth for the rest of the period and there was plenty of end to end action. Of all the great chances both teams had, this is the one that restored the Nashville lead…