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Playoff matchups: Predators will host Red Wings in first round

Apr 7, 2012, 4:14 PM EDT

Todd Bertuzzi, Alexander Radulov AP

Well, it was awfully close to being Chicago vs. Nashville in the first round of the playoffs, but (to paraphrase Dennis Green) the West’s No. 4 vs. No. 5 seed matchup is what we thought it would be. The fourth-seed Nashville Predators are set to host the fifth-seed Detroit Red Wings. Here are a few thoughts to warm you up:

  • It’s no secret that the Red Wings struggle on the road. While they’re home record (31-7-3) is the best in the NHL, the Red Wings are just 17-21-3 on the road. Only the Washington Capitals (15-21-4, seriously) are worse when it comes to playoff teams. Can Detroit overcome that enough to win the series?
  • The Predators are carrying the feeling of a franchise that’s ready to take the so-called “Next Step.” They won their first series last year, come in with all the Alex Radulov buzz and quietly put up a little more offense this season. Do they have the stuff for a deep run? Would this season be a huge letdown if they fall to Detroit?

This series has a lot to love. Original Six franchise takes on what might be the definition of a “non-traditional” market. Some will grumble that Shea Weber and Ryan Suter might be auditioning for a future job with Detroit while others might wonder if winning or losing this series could determine that future. A few might even look at this as a matchup between a high-powered Red Wings offense and a meticulously crafted defensive force in Nashville.

What do you think, though? Share some early thoughts on the series – we’ll have plenty more once previews and other good stuff rolls around.

  1. hines86for6 - Apr 7, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    Preds in 6. Pekka Rinne dominates.

  2. sir1389 - Apr 7, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    Actually the Red Wings are 31-7-3 at home which gives them 65 points at home while the Blues are 30-6-5 at home this season which also gives them 65 points at home.

  3. datsyukx13 - Apr 9, 2012 at 8:43 AM

    Wings in 6

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