The NHL is set up with a great slate of games throughout Saturday. Fourteen games will be up on the board on February 27. One of these games will be between the Detroit Red Wings and the Chicago Blackhawks. These two teams have had opposite starts to this season, but will both look for a win in this one. This game will drop the puck at around 8:00 PM Eastern time on ESPN+.
The Red Wings have started out this season with a record of 6-13-3, which has them in last place of the Central Division. Detroit is coming off a win in their last game, but have lost four of their last six. The Red Wings will look to earn their second straight win for the first time this season. I expect Detroit to come out quickly in this one as they try to start strong.
Chicago has put up a record of 11-6-4 to this point in the season, which has them sitting in third place of the Central Division. The Blackhawks have won back to back games and five of their last six entering this one. Chicago will look to keep it up as they try to further solidify their spot in the playoff race. I expect the Blackhawks to set the pace early at home in this one.
The Blackhawks have been the much better team so far this season, but Detroit will look to knock them off with a win in this one. The Red Wings have not had much success this season after a win, going 0-4-1 after winning their last game. Detroit will look to get a win in this one to string together some victories. I expect a good game between these two long time rivals.
The Red Wings and the Blackhawks have met up four times so far this season. Chicago hosted the first game on January 22. Dylan Larkin scored for Detroit, but it was not enough for the win. Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, while Alex DeBrincat and Dylan Strome both had two assists. Kevin Lankinen finished with 30 saves on 31 shots as the Blackhawks won 4-1.
The second game of the season series stayed in Chicago on January 24. Tyler Bertuzzi had two goals, while Filip Hronek had two assists on the night. Pius Suter had a hat trick on the night for the Blackhawks though. Mattias Janmark and Connor Murphy each had a goal and an assist as well. Kevin Lankinen stopped 25 of 27 shots as the Blackhawks won 6-2 on the night.
The third game of the season series was hosted by the Red Wings on February 15. Christian Djoos and Vladislav Namestnikov each scored for Detroit, but it was not enough. Dominik Kubalik scored two goals including the game winner in overtime for Chicago. Malcolm Subban turned away 27 of 29 shots as the Blackhawks won 3-2 in overtime.
Detroit also hosted the fourth game of the season series on February 17. Jonathan Bernier stopped 24 of 25 shots for the Red Wings, but it was not enough. Philipp Kurashev and Alex DeBrincat both scored for the Blackhawks in this one. Kevin Lankinen finished with a 29 shot shutout as Chicago was able to grab a 2-0 win on the road.
Detroit’s special teams have not been good at all this season. The Red Wings have now gone fourteen straight games without a power play goal. Detroit has capitalized on 4 of their 66 power play chances, which is a 6.1 percent power play. The Red Wings have given up 19 goals on 64 penalties against, which is a 70.3 percent kill rate.
The Blackhawks have been strong on the power play so far this season. Chicago has scored 21 power play goals on 64 attempts, which is a 32.8 percent success rate. The Blackhawks have struggled a bit on the penalty kill though. Chicago has killed off 51 of their opponents 66 power play opportunities, which is a 77.3 percent penalty kill.
Chicago has a clear edge on special teams in this matchup. The Blackhawks have the better power play and penalty kill. The Red Wings have not been able to score on the power play at all as of late, but could finally break through in this one. If Detroit can finally tally one on the man advantage, it could help them get a much needed win in this one.
I expect Thomas Greiss to get the start in the net for the Red Wings in this one. Greiss has earned a record of 1-10-3 throughout his 13 starts this season. He has posted a .891 save percentage and a GAA of 3.16 in those games played. Greiss finished with 9 saves on 13 shots before getting pulled in his last start on February 19 against the Panthers.
Kevin Lankinen will likely get the nod in the crease for Chicago on Saturday night. Lankinen has started in 14 games so far this season, going 8-3-3. He has put up a save percentage of .921 and a 2.59 GAA in his starts. Lankinen’s last start was against the Columbus Blue Jackets, where he stopped 25 of 30 shots in an overtime win.
These two goalies have had very opposite starts to the season. Greiss has struggled so far this season, but is coming into this one after having a week off. He will look to come out much better in this one to help lead the Red Wings to the win. Lankinen has been strong so far this season, but had a rough start in his last outing. He will look to turn it around in this one.
Detroit has lost all four games to the Blackhawks to open up this season series, but will look to turn it around in this one. The Red Wings have not gotten much going this season, but I think they could find some success on the power play in this one. If Detroit can have a strong performance from Greiss on Saturday night, I think they could pull off the upset on the road.
BetOnline has Chicago listed as a -172 against the money line in this one. This implies that the Blackhawks will win this game around 63.2 percent of the time. I think that this line is fair with how bad Detroit has been this season. I think that the Red Wings will have a chance to pull off the upset in this one and as big underdogs on Saturday, I really like the value on Detroit.