NY Islanders at Detroit
When: 2:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 6, 2016
Where: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Mired in a five-game losing skid at Joe Louis Arena, the Detroit Red Wings look to pick themselves off the mat on Saturday afternoon when they open a five-game homestand versus the New York Islanders. Detroit didn't fare much better in its brief jaunt through the Sunshine State, falling to both Tampa Bay and Florida to drop to 2-4-1 in the last seven games overall.
One of the two victories was a 4-2 triumph over New York on Jan. 25, with Justin Abdelkader scoring in that contest while also notching two assists in the Red Wings' 6-3 setback to the Panthers on Thursday. Dylan Larkin tallied twice to increase his goal total to 17, one behind Chicago's Artemi Panarin for the NHL lead among rookies. Like Larkin, New York's Brock Nelson also is on quite the tear - scoring seven goals and setting up three others in his last 10 contests. The 24-year-old Nelson also tallied in the last meeting versus Detroit for his sixth point (four goals, two assists) in seven encounters with the Red Wings.TV:
2 p.m. ET, MSG-Plus 2 (New York), FSN DetroitABOUT THE ISLANDERS (26-17-6):
Veteran defenseman Johnny Boychuk is expected to return to the lineup for the first time since suffering a shoulder injury on a failed check against Buffalo rookie Jack Eichel on Dec. 31. "We never want to rush guys back, obviously, and the few extra days were important," coach Jack Capuano told Newsday of Boychuk. "Our defense has been playing pretty well, too." Cal Clutterbuck, who suffered a lower-body injury in Thursday's 3-2 loss to Washington, practiced fully on Friday and expects to be in the lineup against Detroit.ABOUT THE RED WINGS (25-18-8):
Speedy Andreas Athanasiou, who was recalled from Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League on Friday, looks to ignite a spark when he's paired with Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist on a line. "Those are two good players and obviously they have a lot of skill," the 21-year-old Athanasiou told MLive. "I think my speed can help them out and complement their play." Athanasiou scored his first career NHL goal on Nov. 10 during his first stint with the club this season.OVERTIME
1. Islanders G Jaroslav Halak has lost eight of 12 decisions (4-5-3) on the road this season.
2. Detroit is just 3-6-2 in its last 11 encounters with New York.
3. The Islanders have dropped 11 of 15 (4-9-2) meetings against Atlantic Division representatives.PREDICTION:
Islanders 3, Red Wings 2
Stats and Records