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Red Wings seek third in Atlantic, but resting veterans

by Kurt Dusterberg /

RED WINGS (42-25-14) AT HURRICANES (30-40-11)


RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Detroit Red Wings will close out the regular season without Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Niklas Kronwall and Brendan Smith in the lineup.

"We've had a bunch of guys playing who shouldn't have been playing for a period of time, so they are out," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said.

There is still much at stake for the Red Wings, who can finish third in the Atlantic Division or in either wild card position.

"We're doing everything we can to win the hockey game," Babcock said. "Let's get prepared, play hard. Now suddenly it's a different group that has to lead the way, which is a real good opportunity for me to evaluate and for them to show."

The Carolina Hurricanes will close out a sixth consecutive season missing the Stanley Cup playoffs.

"There's positive steps we can build off of," Hurricanes captain Eric Staal said. "Obviously, you would have to be naive to think we don't need to do anything over the summer to make differences in our team. But the foundation of the way we want to play is there."

Here are the projected starting lineups.


Gustav Nyquist - Riley Sheahan - Stephen Weiss

Tomas Tatar - Darren Helm - Tomas Jurco

Daniel Cleary - Joakim Andersson - Teemu Pulkkinen

Drew Miller - Luke Glendening - Landon Ferraro

Jakub Kindl - Jonathan Ericsson

Danny DeKeyser - Alexey Marchenko

Kyle Quincey - Marek Zidlicky

Petr Mrazek

Jimmy Howard

Scratched: Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Niklas Kronwall, Brendan Smith

Injured: Justin Abdelkader (hand), Johan Franzen (concussion), Erik Cole (spinal contusion)


Eric Staal - Jordan Staal - Alexander Semin

Jeff Skinner - Elias Lindholm - Andrej Nestrasil

Nathan Gerbe - Victor Rask - Chris Terry

Patrick Dwyer - Jay McClement - Brad Malone

Ron Hainsey - Justin Faulk

Keegan Lowe - Ryan Murphy

Brett Bellemore - John-Michael Liles

Cam Ward

Anton Khudobin

Scratched: Michal Jordan

Injured: Rasmus Rissanen (knee), Riley Nash (concussion), Jack Hillen (concussion)

Status report: Rask lost a tooth at the morning skate. Peters believes he will be ready to play.

Who's hot: Helm has two goals and an assist in the past three games ... Eric Staal has a goal and three assists in his past four.

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