Blackhawks-Red Wings Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated April 06, 2012
Last season, the Detroit Red Wings nearly dashed the Chicago Blackhawks' playoff hopes in the final game of the regular season. This time, the Blackhawks could play a spoiler of sorts in Saturday's finale at Joe Louis Arena with a chance to help deny the Red Wings home-ice advantage for the first round of the playoffs. Chicago fell 4-3 to visiting Detroit on the last day of the 2010-11 regular season and only got into the playoffs because of Dallas' loss in Minnesota later that day. The Blackhawks (44-26-11) spared themselves the same drama this season by wrapping up their postseason berth before the start of this month. Chicago, though, won't begin its fourth consecutive playoff appearance at home because it can finish no better than fifth in the Western Conference. The Red Wings, meanwhile, trail fourth-place Nashville by one point heading into Saturday. Detroit (48-28-5) needs a win and a regulation loss from the Predators later in the day to clinch home-ice advantage for a first-round series against Nashville. A regulation loss would push the Red Wings into sixth place behind Chicago and send them off to face the Pacific Division champion. "Starting at home and also having that seventh (game) at home with this crowd, obviously that would be a big deal," defenseman Niklas Kronwall told the team's website. The Red Wings need the help because they failed to earn a third straight win Thursday, losing 2-1 at home to New Jersey. They were coming off shootout victories over Florida and St. Louis. Detroit now tries try to earn a split in the six-game season series with Chicago while regaining its scoring touch. The Red Wings have scored seven times over their past five games, including one goal in each of the last three at home. The Blackhawks have allowed one goal in each of the past two meetings, most recently a 2-1 road victory March 4. They're 6-0-1 in their last seven visits to Detroit. Corey Crawford is 3-0-1 with a 1.97 goals-against average in four games there since the start of last season. He was denied a third straight win Thursday with a 2-1 shootout defeat at Minnesota. The Blackhawks only recorded a combined two shots in the third period and overtime. They went 0 for 4 on the power play after scoring three times in their previous 10 chances. Chicago is a league-worst 9 for 97 (9.3 percent) with the man advantage since Jan. 31. "We've got to get (the power play) going if we want to win some tight games in the playoffs," forward Viktor Stalberg said. "It's going to be a crucial part of the game, and we get one more chance to work on it on Saturday." Chicago likely won't have Jonathan Toews to help. The captain hasn't played since Feb. 19 because of a concussion but was cleared for contact at the end of last month. Marian Hossa will try to help make up for his absence. He has 13 points in his last 11 games against his former team, including a team-best five this season. Detroit's Todd Bertuzzi has scored three of his 14 goals against Chicago, his most versus any opponent this season.
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Eddie Lacy defends Mike McCarthy for weight loss comments

Red Sox nearly had serious catcher emergency in loss to Tigers

Ohio State DL Dylan Thompson ineligible for season

Roger Federer will miss Olympics, U.S. Open with knee injury

Seahawks extend Pete Carroll through 2019


LSU kicker Colby Delahoussaye releases first statement following car crash

Report: Brock Osweiler could have made more money staying with Broncos

Andrew Luck: Feels `as good as I've ever felt` for training camp

Amar'e Stoudemire announces retirement after signing one-day contract with Knicks

Report: Gregory failed multiple drug tests since suspension

Olympian Abby Johnston: Worst thing about Olympic village is no Pokemon

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

Report: Paul Pierce to return to Clippers

Jimbo Fisher: You come to FSU to win national championships

Andre Johnson worked out for Tennessee Titans

Shattenkirk for Krejci trade rumor still floating around

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman denies link to C.T.E.

Michael Vick: Cam Newton can’t beat me in 40-yard dash

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

Odell Beckham Jr. says Giants will play in Super Bowl LI

Iowa researchers say they can optimize Monday Night Football ratings with scheduling

Terrelle Pryor can visit Ohio State as five-year ban comes to a close

Rudy Gay admits to having ‘no idea’ about what the Kings are doing

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker