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The Red Wings have been delivered some bad news in advance of the game with Chicago. Tyler Bertuzzi is going to miss nearly the next 20 games with an injury. The first line winger is a scorer. His energy will be hard to replace. Similarly, the team is still without Jakub Vrana, who did not practice with the team but is expected to travel to Chicago.
The good news is that Detroit has plenty of time to rest. The team fought back to salvage a overtime loss against the Kings on Monday. It will not play until the skate with Chicago. Detroit also has plenty of depth – as it showed against Los Angelas.
Chicago did its part to keep the Sharks winless with a 5-2 victory on Saturday. That was the teams last game as well. It will have had plenty of practice and rest by the time it gets onto the ice Friday night.
Even with the outburst, where the Blackhawks have to improve is offensively.
Two of the goals against San Jose were shorthanded tallies. The full-strength numbers are not good. The team has just 69 total shots-on-goal. It has been recorded as having just 52 scoring chances when it is 5-on-5. Both of those numbers are considerably behind the league average of 93 shots, and 63 scoring chances.
With both teams having limited games and big breaks there could be energetic legs or rusty moves. The one thing that doesn’t figure to simply spark is the Blackhawk offense.
The game is tough to definitively call, but take Detroit to win to and get your free $200 from BetMGM when a goal is scored!