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Red Wings at Panthers preview

Detroit hopes to end four-game skid; Ekblad, Weegar out for Florida

by Alain Poupart / Independent Correspondent

RED WINGS (9-26-3) at PANTHERS (18-13-5)

7 p.m. ET; FS-F, FS-D+, NHL.TV


The Game

Defensemen Aaron Ekblad and MacKenzie Weegar each will be out with an upper-body injury when the Florida Panthers host the Detroit Red Wings at BB&T Center on Saturday.

Ekblad was injured in the second period when he was hit by a shot in a 6-1 loss at the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday. He is also expected to miss Florida's game against the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday but will accompany the Panthers on a four-game road trip that begins at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday.

Weegar did not take part in the morning skate and is day to day for Florida, 3-1-0 in its past four games after going 2-4-0 in its previous six games.

The Red Wings look to avoid their fifth straight loss; they have been outscored 18-8 during their four-game skid and are 2-14-0 in their past 16 games.


Players to watch

Red Wings forward Tyler Bertuzzi has five points (four goals, one assist) in a five-game point streak and has scored one goal in three consecutive games.

Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau has 11 points (three goals, eight assists) in a four-game point streak, and has scored one goal in three straight games.


They said it

"We have to find a way to persevere and it's not easy. We've gotten kicked lots. A lot of that is self-inflicted. I get it. But we have to show up the next day and we [must] be ready to work and we have to work our way out of it." -- Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill

"You've got to respect your opponent and you've got to keep it simple early in the game, work your way into it. We want to be all business, we want to play hard, we want to set the tempo, we want to set the pace right off the bat." -- Panthers coach Joel Quenneville


Red Wings projected lineup

Tyler Bertuzzi -- Dylan Larkin -- Andreas Athanasiou

Robby Fabbri -- Valtteri Filppula -- Filip Zadina

Darren Helm -- Luke Glendening -- Adam Erne

Christoffer Ehn -- Frans Nielsen -- Brendan Perlini

Patrik Nemeth -- Mike Green

Trevor Daley -- Filip Hronek

Brian Lashoff -- Madison Bowey

Jimmy Howard

Calvin Pickard

Scratched: Alex Biega, Justin Abdelkader

Injured: Jonathan Bernier (groin), Danny DeKeyser (back), Anthony Mantha (upper body), Jonathan Ericsson (face)


Panthers projected lineup

Jonathan Huberdeau -- Aleksander Barkov -- Evgenii Dadonov

Brett Connolly -- Vincent Trocheck -- Noel Acciari

Frank Vatrano -- Brian Boyle -- Mike Hoffman

Colton Sceviour -- Dominic Toninato -- Denis Malgin

Keith Yandle -- Mark Pysyk

Riley Stillman -- Anton Stralman

Mike Matheson -- Josh Brown

Chris Driedger

Sergei Bobrovsky

Scratched: Jayce Hawryluk

Injured: Aaron Ekblad (upper body), MacKenzie Weegar (upper body


Status report

The Red Wings recalled Zadina, Lashoff and Pickard from Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League on Friday. … Bernier could be ready to return against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday. … Hawryluk was recalled from Springfield of the AHL on Tuesday following a conditioning assignment. He hasn't played for the Panthers since Oct. 30.


Stat pack

Detroit has allowed five or more goals in 18 of its 38 games this season. … Barkov has 21 points (eight goals, 13 assists) in 23 games against the Red Wings.

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