Date: Tuesday, October 8th, 2019
Time: 4:30 PM PT
Location: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, MI
TV: Prime Ticket
Anaheim has begun the season 2-0, a perfect start. They also went to work early on some division rivals, defeating the Coyotes and Sharks. John Gibson is picking up where he left off, and the Ducks are showing reinvigorated play with the bright talent and new bench boss. Yes, everything is right with the world at this time, at least in the eyes of Ducks fans.
After an impressive win over the San Jose Sharks, who in their defense were playing a back-to-back, the Ducks look to their next test. They embark on their first road trip of the season and will need to impose their game while away from the Honda Center. The road trip will face them against four teams from the eastern conference, the first being the Detroit Red Wings.
Detroit had a difficult past couple of seasons, but they too are looking to hit the reset button this season. They might not out skill every team, but with Yzerman now in the GM seat, they’ll be no easy matchup as they’ve already shown. The Red Wings are sitting at 2-0 as well, having beating two strong central teams, the Predators and Stars.
Keys to the Game
Limiting the Top Line - Detroit’s top line of has been dynamite to start the season. (Tyler Bertuzzi, Dylan Larkin, Anthony Mantha). They’ve generated eight of the nine goals scored for the Wings in their first two games and will continue to if kept unchecked. Detroit’s talent thins out fast, so limiting the top line’s opportunities will be a huge driving factor in the outcome of the game.
Middle six domination - With the aforementioned Wings team being thin on their lower lines (they’re really quite terrible), the Ducks have an opportunity to dominate the game with their middle lines. They have plenty of proven talent in the likes of Rickard Rakell, Jakob Silfverberg and Adam Henrique, along with rising young impact players like Troy Terry and Max Jones. I expect them to play fast and generate more than a few strong breakouts.
All Eyes On Me
To stay on brand, I see Rickard Rakell breaking onto the score sheet in a big way. His line is far more talented than any of the bottom three lines for Detroit. This means he’ll get some great opportunities, and he’s too good to not capitalize.
For the Red Wings, Anthony Mantha is the man to watch out for. With five goals, and seven points, already on the season, he’s finding ways to get into dangerous positions and his team has no problem feeding him chances when he does.
Sneak preview of Silfverberg and Rakell taking on the Wings: