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Daily Primer Dec. 30: Last tune-up for Red Wings

Monday, 12.30.2013 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider


The Detroit Red Wings are looking forward to playing in the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on New Year's Day. But there's still the matter of one more indoor game to deal with first.

The Red Wings play their final game of 2013 when they visit the Nashville Predators on Monday night. Detroit is 1-6-0 this month at home, but the Red Wings have earned at least a point in all six of their December road games, and their 4-0-2 record includes a 4-3 win against the Florida Panthers on Saturday.

The Predators are coming off a 3-2 home victory against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.

Here's a look at all of the games Monday:

Washington Capitals at Ottawa Senators -- The Capitals come to Canada's capital after perhaps the most frustrating loss any team has had this season. Washington outshot the Buffalo Sabres 50-17, but Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller made 49 saves through 65 minutes and was perfect in the shootout, costing the Capitals a point in a 2-1 loss. Braden Holtby, whose struggles have cost him playing time, could be back in goal after Philipp Grubauer played Sunday. The Senators earned a split of their home-and-home series against the Boston Bruins with a 4-3 victory Saturday night.

Los Angeles Kings at Chicago Blackhawks -- Expect Kings coach Darryl Sutter to spend plenty of time reminding his team what happened in their previous visit to United Center 15 days ago: The Blackhawks jumped on them for three first-period goals and never looked back in a 3-1 win. L.A. has dropped back-to-back games, including a 3-2 loss at Nashville on Saturday in which the Kings scored the tying goal with 36.7 seconds left in regulation only to see the Predators score 10 seconds later. The Blackhawks had a late-game failure of their own Saturday on the road against the St. Louis Blues; they allowed two goals in the final minutes of regulation and lost 6-5 in a shootout.

Detroit Red Wings at Nashville Predators -- The Red Wings got captain Henrik Zetterberg and forward Justin Abdelkader back from injury Saturday. They hope to have speedy center Darren Helm in the lineup against the Predators. He's missed 11 games with a shoulder injury. The Red Wings were one of Nashville's biggest rivals when the teams were together in the Central Division, but following realignment, this is Detroit's only visit to Bridgestone Arena this season.

Philadelphia Flyers at Vancouver Canucks -- After a full week off, the Canucks play for the second time in as many days. They showed no rust after the NHL's longest Christmas break, shutting out the Calgary Flames 2-0. Backup goaltender Eddie Lack, playing in place of injured starter Roberto Luongo, made 18 saves. The Flyers opened a six-game trip by rallying from 2-0 and 3-2 deficits to beat the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 in a shootout Saturday. Philadelphia forward Wayne Simmonds has scored twice in each of his team's past three games.

Quote of the Day

Your team is going to want to recapture the feeling. What they're going to have to figure out is they're going to have to rewrite the story. Because you're going to rewrite the story doesn't mean you want a different end. It's just that you're going to have to learn that there's different challenges to get there, and if you're going to try and tap the same feeling, it ain't going to happen.

— Los Angeles Kings general manager Dean Lombardi on maintaining their success from last season