Jimmy Howard is set to make his return to the Detroit Red Wings' crease and another familiar face will also be back in the lineup Monday when they face the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena.
Darren Helm, who hasn't played since Dec. 4 due to a shoulder injury, practiced on a line with Tomas Jurco and Justin Abdelkader at the morning skate and coach Mike Babcock said he will play, according to a report from Ansar Khan of MLive.com. Helm has seven goals and three assists in 15 games this season.
Howard will start against the Predators in the Red Wings' final tune-up for the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on Wednesday against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Michigan Stadium. A sprained MCL has kept Howard out since Dec. 10. Howard is 6-8-7 with a 2.65 goals-against average and .910 save percentage in 21 appearances.
Johan Franzen also skated for the Red Wings for the first time since suffering a concussion on Dec. 15. However, he said he's not symptom-free and won't be ready to play by the Winter Classic.
Here is the projected lineup for the Red Wings on Monday:
Tomas Tatar - Pavel Datsyuk - Todd Bertuzzi
Gustav Nyquist - Henrik Zetterberg - Daniel Alfredsson
Justin Abdelkader - Darren Helm - Tomas Jurco
Drew Miller - Joakim Andersson - Daniel Cleary
Niklas Kronwall - Brendan Smith
Kyle Quincey - Danny DeKeyser
Jakub Kindl - Brian Lashoff
Scratched: Patrick Eaves, Mikael Samuelsson
Injured: Stephen Weiss (groin/hernia), Johan Franzen (concussion), Jonathan Ericsson (ribs), Jonas Gustavsson (groin)