NHL

Thu, Feb 6, 2014 - 7:30 PM ET
Game Preview
 

Red Wings-Panthers Preview

Share This Story

   
 

After taking advantage of an unexpected opportunity, Jimmy Howard will try to build on his bounce-back performance when he faces one of the NHL's lowest-scoring teams.

He could get some support offensively if Pavel Datsyuk returns.

The Detroit Red Wings will try to finally contain Sean Bergenheim and avoid their fourth loss in five games to the Florida Panthers on Thursday night.

Though coach Mike Babcock wanted to rest the veteran goalie, Howard was pressed into action Monday when Jonas Gustavsson left following the first period because of dizziness.

Howard had played the previous two games following a four-game absence due to a left knee injury. He stepped up with 16 saves over the final two periods after Gustavsson stopped eight in the first in a 2-0 home win over Vancouver.

It was the first time the Red Wings (25-19-12) had a combined shutout since Oct. 27, 2001, when they went on to hoist the Stanley Cup.

''Maybe it's a good omen,'' Howard said.

While insisting Gustavsson is fine, Babcock confirmed Howard would be back between the pipes when Detroit looks to snap a season-worst four-game road losing streak.

Datsyuk, second on the team with 15 goals, will take part in Thursday's practice before determining whether he'll be able to return. The center, who hasn't played since New Year's Day because of a lower-body injury, has scored six times with 11 assists in 12 career games against the Panthers.

Since opening 10-3-1 on the road, the Red Wings have gone 4-5-3 away from home. They were blanked in three straight road contests before losing 6-5 in overtime at Washington on Sunday.

Howard allowed a season-high six goals on 28 shots before getting back on track Monday. He's given up three goals on 55 shots in going 1-0-1 in two career meetings with the Panthers (22-27-7), who rank near the bottom of the league with 2.32 goals per game.

In Howard's most recent start against Florida, Bergenheim began the hosts' rally from two goals down with a third-period score in a 3-2 shootout win Dec. 10. The left wing had two goals against Gustavsson on Dec. 28, but Gustav Nyquist provided a key third-period insurance tally as Detroit held on for a 4-3 victory - its lone win in four meetings this season.

Bergenheim also scored in a 5-4 shootout win in Detroit on Jan. 26. He ranks second on the Panthers with 13 goals, with four coming in his last three games against the Red Wings.

Florida's Tim Thomas could get the nod in this meeting since he's 3-0-0 with a 2.21 goals-against average in the season series.

After allowing 14 goals over his previous three starts, Thomas turned back 20 shots to help the Panthers end a three-game skid with a 4-1 win over visiting Toronto on Tuesday.

''It was probably our best game of the year,'' center Shawn Matthias said. ''It was an exciting game for us.''

Florida will have to keep an eye on Nyquist, who has eight goals in his last eight games. He's also scored in each of the last two meetings with the Panthers.

Teammate Justin Abdelkader had both goals Monday, giving him three in two games. The left wing, though, has just one assist in seven career contests against the Panthers.

Detroit is 9-1-2 with two ties all-time on the road against the Panthers.

Tagged: Red Wings, Panthers, Sean Bergenheim, Jimmy Howard, Tim Thomas, Jonas Gustavsson

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



Play Hockey Simulation Game on WhatIfSports

NHL Videos

Toews, Kane: Easy decision to resign with Blackhawks Posted: Jul 17, 2014
Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane say their decision to sign matching 8-year, $84M...

LA mayor 'F-bombs' Kings rally Posted: Jun 17, 2014
Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti toasts the Stanley Cup champion Kings in front o...

Kings, fans celebrate Stanley Cup Posted: Jun 16, 2014
Kings players celebrate winning the Stanley Cup with a parade through downtown L...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Pittsburgh_Penguins/browse/featuredproduct/175178/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_175000/FF_175178_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black
    Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Dallas_Stars/browse/featuredproduct/243363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_243000/FF_243363_xl.jpg&w=100 124.95 Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey
    Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Tampa_Bay_Lightning/browse/featuredproduct/301017/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_301000/ff_301017_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Anaheim_Ducks/browse/featuredproduct/398322/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_398000/FF_398322_xl.jpg&w=100 43.99 Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Red_Wings/browse/featuredproduct/403205/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_403000/FF_403205_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack
    Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Chicago_Blackhawks/browse/featuredproduct/408123/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_408000/FF_408123_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey
    Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_Jersey_Devils/browse/featuredproduct/456774/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_456000/ff_456774_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Vancouver_Canucks/browse/featuredproduct/665779/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_665000/ff_665779_xl.jpg&w=100 11.95 Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick
    Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Islanders/browse/featuredproduct/752594/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_752000/ff_752594_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt