Red Wings Preseason Game Preview: Pittsburgh Penguins


Two games into the preseason and it feels so good to have Detroit Red Wings hockey back. The Red Wings played a home and home with the Chicago Blackhawks and now the Pittsburgh Penguins come to hockey town for game three. I was hoping that when the Penguins came into town that we would get to see at least a good chunk of their real roster. It is starting to look like I’ll be a bit let down in that department.

The Penguins got Phil Kessel from the Maple leafs and I CANNOT wait to see what he looks like playing with Evgeni Malkin and Sid Crosby this season. This guy was an important player for the Maple Leafs, he lead the team the last six seasons in scoring and meant much more as Steve Dangle of yells and explains in his recent video here.

However back to the Red Wings, this game we get to see more of the younger players again and we get to see if Jimmy Howard can bounce back after his less than stellar performance in Chicago (is it too early to label it that?). I don’t know but here is what the lines look going into tonight’s games;

Lines for the game

3 quick facts

1. Jimmy Howard will be making his second start of the preseason and while it is still very early, the hope is Howard plays better in this game than he did in his start against the Blackhawks. In almost 30 minutes of the ice time Howard saw he saved 18 of the 21 shots he faced. As fans we can’t jump to conclusions yet because it is still the preseason and some players need time to get back into the groove of things. However with only four games left in the preseason, Howard has to show he can be better if he wants to win the starting job against Petr Mrazek.

2. I was going to put in here for you to watch out for Phil Kessel playing, but he is not. However Johan Franzen is making his preseason debut and that is far more exciting. Franzen recently said that his play career is running on the plan of “One more hit, and that is probably it.”. Here is to hoping Franzen can get off the a good start and stay away from anymore big hits and concussions. It will be nice to see him out on the ice again.

3. Tonight we get to see more of the young players play on lines together. Dylan Larkin and Teemu Pulkkinen will be on the same line tonight and as someone who has yet to see them play on a line together this preseason (life and all got in the way), it is pretty intriguing. These two are a big part of the Detroit Red Wings future and seeing how they play together is important. The lines look a lot like they did in the preseason opener with the Blackhawks with minor changes here and there, such as Anthony Mantha not playing with Larkin and Pulkkinen, instead being replaced by Andy Miele at center.

Game info

Faceoff time: 7:30


Cup of Kool-aid prediction: I don’t have great off the wall predictions only theories… Sorry

Real prediction: a close game the Red Wings by a late minutes goal in the third.

Final thought: I wish we were seeing more of the starters from Pittsburgh but it looks like they only sent Malkin and Beau Bennett, who are cool and all but ehh, I’d prefer Crosby, Malkin, and Kessel.

Next: Taking a closer look at last nights game against the Blackhawks

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