staples is the 'Morning Skate', where I rundown everything going on in the NHL, including predictions on the big games. The PensBlog has been nice enough to let me share the Morning Skate with you . You can follow us on Twitter @RLDhockey!
The Morning After:
Penguins 2, Panthers 1 (SO)
Thrashers 5, Senators 4 (SO)
Canucks 4, Blue Jackets 1
Bruins 2, Flyers 1
Predictions record: 2-2
My 3 stars of the night:
1. Chris Higgins, VAN (2 Goals, 1 Assist)… Higgins had his best game yet with Vancouver when he picked up three points in Columbus.
2. Marc-Andre Fleury, PIT (37 Saves, 1 GA)
3. Tim Thomas, BOS (27 Saves, 1 GA)
Blackhawks @ Red Wings, 7:30 ET
Avalanche @ Ducks, 10:00
Game of the Night:
Chicago Blackhawks @ Detroit Red Wings
7:30 ET… TV: VERSUS
Overall: Blackhawks (40-26-8) … Red Wings (44-22-9)
Last Ten: Blackhawks (5-3-2) … Red Wings (5-3-2)
Away/Home: Blackhawks (17-11-8) … Red Wings (20-12-5)
Season Series: 2-1 Blackhawks
Players to watch:
CHI- Marian Hossa
With Sharp out, Chicago needs Hossa to be on his A-game down the stretch.
DET- Henrik Zetterberg
Zetterberg has been a point-per-game player in his career vs. Chicago.
CHI- Corey Crawford (2010/11 stats: 29-15-5, 2.27 GAA)
DET- Joey MacDonald (2010/11 stats: 5-4-2, 2.05 GAA)
CHI- Jimmy Howard (upper body, doubtful), Pavel Datsyuk and Johan Franzen (lower body, questionable), Chris Osgood (groin, out)
DET- Patrick Sharp and Jordan Hendry (knee, out), Dave Bolland (concussion, out)
Original Six rivals, Chicago and Detroit, meet for the fourth time this season. Their final two games will be a home-and-home on the last weekend of the season. The banged-up Red Wings welcome in the Blackhawks, who are suddenly fighting for their playoff lives. Chicago has the last two meetings and will be playing desperate hockey. If MacDonald is net for Detroit, I think the ‘Hawks will be able to grab two huge points.
Prediction: Blackhawks 3, Red Wings 2
The rest of tonight’s predictions:
Ducks over Avalanche
Video of the Day:
The Playoff Drive:
Countdown – 16 days
SportsClubStats swing game of the day:
Colorado @ Anaheim
Ducks’ playoff chances w/ win: 83.2% (+6.6)
With a loss: 61.4% (-15.2)
Playoff video of the day: