Apr. 4, 2013; Glendale, AZ, USA; Detroit Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock (left) talks with assistant coach Bill Peters (right) during the first period against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Preview: One Game At A Time For The Detroit Red Wings

Detroit starts its three game home stand tonight against the Phoenix Coyotes at 7:30 p.m. EDT.

Detroit has gone 1-1-3 in their past five games and while those three OT points they were able to acquire were huge, they have to start winning games. The Red Wings third line has stepped up huge and needs to continue producing, along with Zetterberg and Datsyuk if the Wings are to have any shot at the playoffs.

The Coyotes are all but out of the playoffs, but are looking to play spoiler against the Red Wings tonight. Mike Smith is back in between the pipes, which can spell danger for the Red Wings and the gritty Shane Doan will not let the Wings get away with an easy victory.

Projected Line-up

Forwards

Henrik Zetterberg – Pavel Datsyuk – Justin Abdelkader

Johan Franzen – Valtteri Filppula – Daniel Cleary

Gustav Nyquist – Joakim Andersson  Damien Brunner

Patrick Eaves – Cory Emmerton – Jordin Tootoo

Defensemen

Niklas Kronwall – Jonathan Ericsson

Brendan Smith  Kyle Quincey

Jakub Kindl  Danny DeKeyser

Goaltender

Jimmy Howard

With Drew Miller out of the line-up because of a broken hand Patrick Eaves will be given a shot as a full time player.

Todd Bertuzzi is close to coming back from his injury and could end up playing tonight.

Detroit is 1-1 against Phoenix this season and cannot afford to go 1-2 or 1-1-1, they need a win tonight.

Playoff Standings – Columbus won their game last night putting them 3 point up on the Red Wings, but the Wings have two games in hand. Then the Stars lost in overtime which ties them in points with the Red Wings, Detroit all has a game in hand against them.

Prediction: The Red Wings are at home and the crowd will be behind them. Detroit victory 3-1.

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