(Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings)
This is the first game between the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings as members of the Atlantic Division, and the first for the Canadiens at Joe Louis Arena since Dec. 10, 2010. They play once a month over the first four of 2014.
"I haven't played these guys throughout my career, and we'll see each other a lot more now," Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterbergsaid Thursday, according to the Detroit Free Press. "It's a team that you want to play against. For our fans, it's great. For their fans, it's great. We're looking forward to this."
Detroit is likely to have forward Daniel Alfredsson back after missing six games with back spasms. He has practiced the past three days.
"Physically, I'm fine. I didn't skate for 10 days at least, but I've had three good sessions here in a row and no setbacks," Alfredsson said. "I'm feeling confident about coming back soon … I'll have a discussion and we'll come to a plan with what we're going to do."
With Alfredsson, Pavel Datsyuk (lower body) and Johan Franzen (concussion) among those sidelined, young forwards Riley Sheahan,Tomas Jurco, Luke Glendening have been getting more ice time.
"To be honest, with these kids here, we're a quicker team," coach Mike Babcock said. "We're quicker right now than we've been; we're competing harder than earlier in the year. We have to compete at a different level just because we don't have the skill. They've tried to do it right every day, which is a positive."
Tonight, Detroit will look to take down Montreal and win their second straight.
Welcome to the Detroit Red Wings Game Day Blog, where you can get behind-the-scenes information, thoughts from players and staff, and up-to-date news on anything and everything Red Wings on game day.
You can watch tonight's 7:30 PM matchup on Fox Sports Detroit or TSN or RDS, or listen in with Ken Kal and Paul Woods on AM1270.