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Red Wings at Predators preview

Athanasiou could play in Detroit opener; Duchene looks to build on solid debut with Nashville

by Robby Stanley / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

RED WINGS (0-0-0) at PREDATORS (1-0-0)

8 p.m. ET; FS-D, FS-TN, NHL.TV

 

The Game

Andreas Athanasiou will be a game-time decision when the Detroit Red Wings open their season against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena on Saturday.

The forward is managing an undisclosed injury; if he plays, he is expected to be on a line with Luke Glendening and Taro Hirose. The Red Wings have won nine of their previous 10 games against the Predators.

The Predators, who are playing the second game in a four-game homestand, opened their season with a 5-2 win against the Minnesota Wild on Thursday. Predators coach Peter Laviolette needs one win to tie Bryan Murray (620 wins) for 17th place on the NHL's all-time coaching wins list.

 

Players to watch

Red Wings forward Valtteri Filppula will play his first game since signing with Detroit on July 1. Filppula spent eight seasons with the Red Wings from 2005-13. He had 31 points (17 goals, 14 assists) with the New York Islanders last season.

Predators forward Matt Duchene had three assists on Thursday. He has 21 points (10 goals, 11 assists) in 28 games against the Red Wings.

 

They said it

"It was kind of just a little tweak after I scored in the [preseason] game (against the New York Islanders). I kind of hit the boards funny, and it's just been an ongoing tweak that's been affecting my skating a little bit. It's feeling pretty good and just taking it by the minute pretty much." -- Detroit forward Andreas Athanasiou 

"I really liked our start. I thought we came out in the first period and really dominated. The shots were eight or 10 to zero in the first five or 10 minutes. So, if we can do that again and get our crowd rocking on a Saturday night, hopefully we can sustain that. It's a tough place to play when we've got our crowd behind us and we're playing fast." -- Nashville forward Colton Sissons on carrying momentum from the game Thursday

 

Red Wings projected lineup

Tyler Bertuzzi -- Dylan Larkin -- Anthony Mantha

Luke Glendening -- Andreas Athanasiou -- Taro Hirose

Adam Erne -- Frans Nielsen -- Valtteri Filppula

Christoffer Ehn -- Jacob de la Rose -- Justin Abdelkader

Patrik Nemeth -- Mike Green

Danny DeKeyser -- Filip Hronek

Dennis Cholowski -- Trevor Daley

Jimmy Howard

Jonathan Bernier

Scratched: Darren Helm, Madison Bowey

Injured: Jonathan Ericsson (undisclosed)

 

Predators projected lineup

Craig Smith -- Ryan Johansen -- Viktor Arvidsson

Filip Forsberg -- Matt Duchene -- Mikael Granlund

Rocco Grimaldi -- Kyle Turris -- Calle Jarnkrok

Colton Sissons -- Nick Bonino -- Austin Watson

Roman Josi -- Ryan Ellis

Mattias Ekholm -- Dante Fabbro

Dan Hamhuis -- Yannick Weber

Juuse Saros

Pekka Rinne

Scratched: Daniel Carr, Matt Irwin

Injured: None

 

Status report

Athanasiou participated in the morning skate. … The Predators held an optional morning skate. Duchene participated after not practicing Friday. 

 

Stat pack

The Red Wings have won each of their last five games against the Predators in Nashville. … Josi has 12 points (two goals, 10 assists) in 22 games against the Red Wings, including five assists in the past six games.

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