WGD: GAME 52, ISLANDERS @ RED WINGS

feb6

Bye Florida! The Red Wings’ back-to-back in Florida did not go as they hoped it would and now they sit in a Wild Card spot, one point away from being on the outside looking in. With the Mom’s/Florida trip is over, the Red Wings are back in the D for some afternoon puck. The welcome the Islanders, who they played an entertaining game against before the All-Star break. Let’s break it down! 

THE RED WINGS

Detroit Red Wings lines courtesy of Daily Faceoff

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How awesome do those look? Yep, it’s true, the Red Wings recalled Andreas Athanasiou from Grand Rapids and he will centre Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist. Athanasiou scored a goal in six games with the Red Wings earlier in the season and he has picked up 16 points (8G / 8A) in 26 games with the Griffins. Not only do we get A.A back in the lineup, but Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg will play together. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I get fired up when Pav and Z play together. We need a win, so hopefully this works out! 

THE ISLANDERS

New York Islanders courtesy of Daily Faceoff

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The Islanders group of forwards is expected to look the same as it did in Brooklyn back on January 25th. However, the blueline will look a little better with Johnny Boychuk expected to return. Boychuk has been sidelined with a shoulder injury since December 31st, but he was activated from IR this morning so look for him to get back into the lineup. 

Jonathan Ericsson will need to avoid turning the puck over to John Tavares this time around. 

BETWEEN THE PIPES

After Jimmy Howard was lit up (again) on Thursday, Petr Mrazek will be in goal this afternoon. He gave up three goals on 23 shots in the Red Wings’ loss to the Lightning earlier in the week, but he was excellent, stopping 27 shots in the win over the Isles before the All-Star break. Surprisingly, Mrazek has lost four of his last five (1-3-1) on home ice, while posting a 2.21 GAA and .924 SV%. 

The Islanders have yet to announce their starter, but it could be Thomas Greiss after Jaroslav Halak suffered the loss on Thursday. Greiss has not started since January 12th and with the Islanders having a back-to-back today and tomorrow, he is expected to get one of the two games. 

WORDS FROM THE ENEMY

The Islanders are pretty boring on Twitter. Last time I had to congratulate Thomas Greiss on helping people get out of the snow, today, there’s no snow and nothing else exciting. However, reporter extraordinaire Arthur Staple is putting together a road-trip playlist together and it starts with Eminem’s “Lose Yourself,” inspired by Detroit. Since it’s one of the greatest songs ever, listen to it! 

WHERE TO WATCH

Puck drop is at 2:00 p.m. ET at Joe Louis Arena. The game will be televised locally on Fox Sports Detroit and aired on 97.1 FM The Ticket. 

Also, make sure to follow us on Twitter; we’ll have live tweets, GIFS, and all the fun stuff that a topical social media platform has.