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Power outage cancels Red Wings, Panthers skates

by Paul Harris

PANTHERS (9-7-6) at RED WINGS (14-5-5)


DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings and Florida Panthers did not skate Tuesday because of a power outage in downtown Detroit that included Joe Louis Arena.

However the game will be played as scheduled to be played at 7:30 p.m. ET. The Red Wings announced that power had been restored at Joe Louis Arena at 3 p.m. ET.

"Obviously there's something wrong but I hear it's the whole area," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said earlier Tuesday. "They'll get it worked out and we'll be playing tonight."

Babcock said there was backup power in Detroit's dressing room, so the Red Wings were able to have their usual game-day meetings.

According to the Detroit Free Press, a major power outage affected all of Detroit's Public Lighting Department's roughly 100 customers, among them Joe Louis Arena. Traffic signals around the city were out and elevators were stuck.

It is the second time in less than 48 hours that a power situation had affected Joe Louis Arena and the Red Wings.

Detroit's 5-3 win against the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday was interrupted by a power surge that knocked out most of the lights in the arena 29 seconds into the game.

The delay lasted 34 minutes and each team was sent back to the dressing rooms.

Detroit right wing Justin Abdelkader, who already was out Tuesday because of a shoulder injury sustained in the second period Sunday, also has the flu and didn't come to the rink, according to Babcock.

Abdelkader has seven goals, 15 points and a plus-6 rating in 24 games. He is important to the Red Wings' overall game because of his physicality, net-front presence, backchecking and shot-blocking abilities.

Panthers center Aleksander Barkov is out because of an upper-body injury, according to Florida coach Gerard Gallant.

Barkov, who played a couple of shifts Monday in a 2-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets in Columbus, will be replaced by Shawn Thornton.

Gallant said the Panthers need to get back to their usual game against Detroit.

“Last night we didn't compete … we've got to work harder,” he said.

Part of that is being physical with the Red Wings.

“They're a skilled team. We'd like to get it in and bump their defense a little bit,” said Gallant, who played for Detroit for the first nine seasons of his 11-season NHL career.

“It's great to be back,” he said. “ … Good to come back and see a lot of people.”

Here are the projected lineups:


Jonathan Huberdeau - Nick Bjugstad - Jussi Jokinen

Sean Bergenheim - Vincent Trocheck - Brad Boyes

Tomas Kopecky - Tomas Fleischmann - Jimmy Hayes

Brandon Pirri - Derek MacKenzie - Shawn Thornton

Brian Campbell - Aaron Ekblad

Willie Mitchell - Dmitry Kulikov

Dylan Olsen - Erik Gudbranson

Roberto Luongo

Al Montoya

Scratched: Colby Robak

Injured: Aleksander Barkov (upper body), Dave Bolland (groin), Scottie Upshall (ankle)


Henrik Zetterberg - Pavel Datsyuk - Johan Franzen

Gustav Nyquist - Riley Sheahan - Tomas Tatar

Tomas Jurco - Darren Helm - Stephen Weiss

Drew Miller - Luke Glendening - Joakim Andersson

Jonathan Ericsson - Niklas Kronwall

Danny DeKeyser - Kyle Quincey

Brendan Smith - Jakub Kindl

Jimmy Howard

Petr Mrazek

Scratched: Daniel Cleary, Brian Lashoff

Injured: Justin Abdelkader (shoulder)

Status report: Andersson, a healthy scratch the past three games, will replace Abdelkader in the lineup. Franzen will take Abdelkader's place on the top line with Datsyuk to begin the game. "I'll move [Franzen] with [Zetterberg] and [Datsyuk], and [Franzen's] got to be at the net front," Babcock said. "That's a priority for him. If not, Jurco will go there."

Who's hot: Datsyuk has four goals and is plus-4 in three games since returning from a groin injury. ... Ekblad scored the Panthers' goal Monday.

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