Mrazek had another shutout going late in Game 4, but the Lightning pushed two passed him in the final six minutes and another in Overtime. He has a 2.43 GAA and .922 SV% in the first four games of the series and will need to turn in another huge performance tonight.
Mrazek stopped all 22 shots that he faced in the Red Wings 3-0 shutout win over the Lightning in Game 3. Mrazek struggled in Game 2, but bounced back with his first career playoff shutout. He will look to put together another great outing and give the Red Wings a 3-1 series lead heading back to Tampa Bay.
Mrazek was yanked after allowing four goals on 18 shots in two periods in the Red Wings 5-1 loss in Game 2. The series now shifts back to Detroit where Mrazek was 5-4-2 with a 2.15 GAA and .922 SV% this season. The Red Wings have struggled in front of Mrazek so far and will need to improve on home ice on Tuesday.
Abdelkader (hand) will be back in the Red Wings lineup in Game 3.
After missing the first two games of the series, Abdelkader confirmed on Monday that he will return to the lineup in Game 3. With Abdelkader back in, Stephen Weiss will come out. Abdelkader was arguably the Red Wings best player in the final month of the season and his hard-nosed style of play should be huge for them on Tuesday.
Smith is expected to get into the lineup in Game 3.
Smith served as a healthy scratch for the season finale and the first two games of the regular season, but he will be back in the lineup for Game 3 in Detroit. Smith had 13 points (4G / 9A) in 76 games this season.
Abdelkader (hand) is expected to return to the lineup on Tuesday.
Abdelkader missed the final four games of the regular season and the first two games of the series, but it looks like he will be back in the lineup for Game 3 in Detroit. Monitor his status leading into tomorrow's game.
Mrazek was outstanding in his playoff debut. The Lightning dominated the Red Wings, but Mrazek was able to steal game 1 by stopping 44 of 46 shots. The Red Wings will look to have a better effort in game 2, but it would be hard for Mrazek to top his first NHL postseason start.
Smith was a healthy scratch in the season finale after taking a delay of game penalty from the bench in the Red Wings OT loss to the Canadiends on March 9th. It looks like he is still in Mike Babcock’s doghouse, so he will sit in Game 1 while Alexey Marchenko makes his playoff’s debut.
Abdelkader missed the final four games of the regular season and will be held out of Game 1 vs. the Lightning. Abdelkader continues to skate, but he is not believed to be too far from returning to the lineup. Monitor his status leading up to Game 2 on Saturday afternoon.
Mrazek posted a 35-save shutout in the Red Wings 2-0 win over the Hurricanes in the season finale. The shutout put a stamp on Mrazek being the game 1 starter vs. the Lightning. He went 16-9-2 with a 2.38 GAA and .918 SV% with the Red Wings this season. He was pulled in his first start against Tampa Bay, but posted a 23-save shutout in his second.
While a number of Red Wings are being given the night off for rest reasons, it is believed that Smith will be a legitimate healthy scratch after taking a dumb penalty in Thursday’s OT loss to the Canadiens. Alexey Marchenko will replace Smith.
Kronwall has only missed one game this season, but he will miss his second game of the season tonight to get some rest prior to the playoffs. Kronwall finishes the year with his third highest point total having scored nine goals and 35 assists (44 points) in 80 games.
The Red Wings will give their 34-year-old captain the night off tonight in Carolina. With the playoffs locked up the Wings have earned the luxury to rest their important players. Zetterberg finishes the season with 17 goals and 49 assists (66 points) in 77 games this season.