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National Hockey League
Pittsburgh at Detroit
When: 7:30 PM ET, Thursday, October 23, 2014
Where: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan

The Pittsburgh Penguins boast a potent power play while the Detroit Red Wings have yet to allow a goal while short-handed on 18 occasions this season. The special teams likely will be put to the test when the clubs meet at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit on Thursday. Pittsburgh converted on eight of its first 17 opportunities with the man advantage before going 0-for-2 in a 5-3 loss to Keystone State-rival Philadelphia on Wednesday.

While the Penguins stumbled in their last contest, Pavel Datsyuk didn't look like he missed a step in his season debut on Tuesday - notching an assist before netting a highlight-reel goal that was later disallowed due to goaltender interference during Detroit's 2-1 overtime loss to Montreal. Despite the impressive performance, coach Mike Babcock believes the Russian superstar will need some time to get his conditioning back on track. "It's going to take him a bit," Babcock said of Datsyuk, who had been sidelined with a separated shoulder since Sept. 22. "He’s an elite player, but when you miss training camp, it takes you some time. I don’t care how good a player you are, the NHL is flying out there."

TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, FSN Detroit, ROOT (Pittsburgh)

ABOUT THE PENGUINS (3-2-0): Although he was kept off the scoresheet for the first time this season on Wednesday, captain Sidney Crosby is a prime candidate to rebound versus the Red Wings. The reigning Hart Trophy winner collected two goals and an assist as Pittsburgh recorded five of six points versus Detroit last season (2-0-1). With the Penguins in the midst of playing three games in four days, backup goaltender Thomas Greiss is expected to make his season debut either Thursday or Saturday versus Nashville.

ABOUT THE RED WINGS (3-1-2): While it has been flawless on the penalty kill, Detroit would be wise to provide a jolt to its ailing power play - which is just 2-for-24 on the season. "You want to do good out there," defenseman Niklas Kronwall said. "Of course, sometimes I think maybe you overanalyze things and you want to do the right thing, and that ends up with you thinking too much. Just go back to basics and keep it simple out there usually works."


1. Detroit captain Henrik Zetterberg has scored in his last two overall contests and collected seven goals and five assists in 11 career meetings with Pittsburgh.

2. Penguins RW Pascal Dupuis, who scored on Wednesday, sits two points shy of 400 for his career.

3. Red Wings G Jimmy Howard owns a 3-0-1 record with a .930 save percentage in five career games versus Pittsburgh.

PREDICTION: Red Wings 3, Penguins 2
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div
Pittsburgh 3-2-0-0 L1 2-2-0-0 1-0-0-0 0-0-0-0 3-2-0-0 1-1-0-0
Detroit 3-1-1-1 L1 2-1-0-1 1-0-1-0 0-0-0-0 3-1-1-1 ---
Last Meeting
Pittsburgh Detroit
Date Away Home Shots Saves PP Shots Saves PP
4/9/14 DET 3 PIT 4 (SO) 24 34 2-4 37 21 0-2
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Total Points Player  
Pittsburgh P. Martin 2
Detroit D. Alfredsson 1
Goals Player  
Pittsburgh J. Neal 2
Detroit T. Jurco 1
Assists Player  
Pittsburgh P. Martin 2
Detroit D. Alfredsson 1
Saves Player  
Pittsburgh M. Fleury 34
Detroit J. Gustavsson 21
Total Points Player  
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 9
Detroit H. Zetterberg 7
Goals Player  
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 4
Detroit G. Nyquist 4
Assists Player  
Pittsburgh E. Malkin 6
Detroit H. Zetterberg 5
Saves Player  
Pittsburgh M. Fleury 196
Detroit J. Howard 215
Quickchart Matchup
Pittsburgh Off vs  Detroit Def
3.8 GF
1.5 GA
34.4 Shots
28.7 Shots
8 PP
0 PK
Detroit Off vs  Pittsburgh Def
2 GF
3 GA
28 Shots
30 Shots
2 PP
6 PK