(Photo by Eliot Schechter/Getty Images)
Detroit's only loss in the first four games of a homestand that ends Sunday was to the St. Louis Blues. In the other three the Red Wings beat the Los Angeles Kings, Chicago Blackhawks and Montreal Canadiens to breathe new life into their chase for a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The Wings are still without a number of regulars, including a pair of top-six forwards and starting goaltender Jimmy Howard, but the Red Wings will get forward Johan Franzen back from a concussion Sunday and they've played well in their past two games.
After coming back from a 2-0 hole in the first period to beat the Blackhawks 5-4 in an exciting six-round shootout Wednesday, Detroit beat the Canadiens 4-1 in regulation Friday night. It was a huge victory against the team the Red Wings are chasing for the Atlantic's last guaranteed playoff spot. The question is whether they can keep the intensity up against the Panthers.
"The two big wins were huge," said rookie center Riley Sheahan, whose second career NHL goal was the game-winner against Montreal. "I know the guys are going to get fired up off of [them] and just try to keep it going."
Tonight, they'll look to build off that momentum and finish this homestand with another big win against the Panthers.
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You can watch tonight's 5:00 PM matchup on Fox Sports Detroit-Plus, or listen in with Ken Kal and Paul Woods on AM 1270.