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Detroit
Red Wings
54-21-7
Chicago
Blackhawks
40-34-8

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Red Wings-Blackhawks Preview

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 3:48 AM

Associated Press

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Red Wings-Blackhawks Preview
Detroit Red Wings vs. Chicago Blackhawks

After beating the defending Stanley Cup champions in their season opener, the Detroit Red Wings get to face one of last year's worst teams.

The Red Wings look to continue their domination of the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday in Chicago.

Detroit (1-0-0) won seven of eight meetings against the Blackhawks (0-1-0) last season, with the only loss coming in a shootout at the United Center. The Wings outscored the Blackhawks 32-13 in those seven wins.

Going back to the 2002-03 season, Detroit is 20-3-4 against the Blackhawks.

Tomas Holmstrom scored five of his career-high 30 goals last year in the eight games against Chicago. The veteran left wing also had the game-tying goal in Detroit's season-opening, 3-2 shootout win over the defending Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday. Jiri Hudler also scored for the Wings and Dominik Hasek made three saves in the shootout.

"I think it was a very exciting game for the crowd and for everybody who was in the building, including the players," Hasek said after beating the team that eliminated Detroit from the playoffs in six games last spring.

Detroit was 2-for-7 on power-play opportunities, but also failed to take advantage of several crucial chances with the man advantage.

"I would have liked us to win the game on the four-on-three," coach Mike Babcock told the Red Wings' official Web site. "But I thought our penalty kill and our power play were both good."

Detroit allowed one power-play goal in six chances.

Chicago, meanwhile, already finds itself without its leading scorer from a season ago. Martin Havlat, who had 25 goals and 57 points last season despite being limited by injuries to 56 games, hurt his shoulder in the third period of Thursday's 1-0 loss to the Minnesota Wild.

Havlat underwent an MRI on the shoulder Friday and his status remains uncertain.

The Blackhawks put 27 shots on net against the Wild while Nikolai Khabibulin made 23 saves, but allowed the game's only goal - a power-play tally by Pierre-Marc Bouchard in the second period.

Rookie right wing Patrick Kane, the first selection in last summer's draft, played nearly 17 minutes and was stopped on a late chance to tie the game, but made a positive impression in his debut.

"Best forward on the ice," said coach Denis Savard, in his first full season in Chicago. "It says a lot about the kid. That's why it's going to be fun for our fans."

The 18-year-old Kane is expected to play alongside fellow rookie Jonathan Toews, who did not start the opener because of a broken finger.

The Blackhawks, whose 2.38 goals per game ranked 29th in the NHL in 2006-07, finished last season at the bottom of the Central Division and tied for the third-fewest points in the Western Conference.

"We've got to just continue to keep going and climb that little hill," Savard said.

2007-2008 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Apr 06 '08 CHI 1 at DET 4 N. Lidstrom
Apr 02 '08 DET 2 at CHI 6 R. Lang
Mar 11 '08 CHI 1 at DET 3 P. Datsyuk
Jan 06 '08 DET 3 at CHI 1 D. Cleary
Nov 17 '07 CHI 5 at DET 3 P. Sharp
Nov 11 '07 DET 2 at CHI 3 J. Toews
Oct 12 '07 CHI 3 at DET 2 R. Lang
Oct 06 '07 DET 3 at CHI 4 - SO P. Kane