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Red Wings aren’t your typical underdogs

May 29, 2013, 4:17 PM EDT

Datsyuk Zetterberg Getty Images

The Detroit Red Wings are 9/5 underdogs to beat the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 7 of their second-round series tonight at the United Center, according to online bookmaker Bovada.

That the ‘Hawks are the betting favorites is no surprise. They were the best team in the NHL during the regular season, they’ve got home-ice advantage, and they’ve won two straight since dropping Games 2, 3, and 4 of the series.

That said, there’s reason to believe Detroit could pull off the upset.

First of all, nobody can say the Wings stole any of their three victories, even though goalie Jimmy Howard did play extremely well in them.

Detroit also boasts plenty of big-game experience on its roster, led by three of the most accomplished playoff performers in the league, Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, and Johan Franzen.

Among active NHLers, Zetterberg ranks fourth with 113 points in 122 postseason games; Datsyuk is eighth with 103 points in 139 games; and Franzen is 17th with 79 points in 101 games.

And then there’s the head coach, Mike Babcock. If anyone can get a team prepared for a big game, it’s Babcock, who in addition to leading the Wings to a Stanley Cup title in 2008 also coached Team Canada to Olympic gold in 2010.

Yes, Detroit has lost Game 7’s under Babcock — most notably in 2009 when it dropped Game 7 of the Cup finals to the Penguins.

But really, the pressure is on the Blackhawks tonight. If the Wings lose, oh well, a lot of people didn’t even expect them to make the playoffs in their first season without Nicklas Lidstrom.

“If I would have told our whole team before this series, if I would have told Detroit, Michigan before this series, that we were going to be playing Chicago in Game 7, I think everyone would have been pretty excited about that,” Babcock said Monday. “I love Game 7s. I’m excited about it. We’ve got a chance to push them out of the playoffs — should be a lot of fun.”

  1. blackhawkslove - May 29, 2013 at 4:31 PM

    Momentum is all to Chicago. It would take Howard to stand on his head to win this one. The madhouse is going to be rocking tonight and don’t expect anything easy for the Red Wings. Especially with the much essential last change. Give Toews some open ice and see what he’ll do.

    • bennywuh - May 29, 2013 at 4:51 PM

      pff, maybe he can find that elusive twine he’s been missing.

      • blackhawkslove - May 29, 2013 at 5:30 PM

        All it takes is one goal to get confidence. Played like the captain we expected in game six.

    • valoisjoeybfeld69 - May 29, 2013 at 5:14 PM

      Momentum! You gotta be kidding! It’s game seven for both teams, and neither team has momentum. The only team that has an advantage is Chicago because they have home ice advantage. And this is huge. It’s going to be a very entertaining game regardless of who you cheer for. You’ll see a lot of non-calls because the refs will not want to be influencing the outcome. They’ll let the boys play for the win w/o getting in the way, and neither team will use their 4th lines extensively.

    • welburnj - May 29, 2013 at 7:17 PM

      I hope the Red Wings can stop the Chicago Diving Championships Tonite…Any team can win one Game,,This should be good tonight.,,, Go Wings!!!

  2. aldub2010 - May 29, 2013 at 4:34 PM

    How is all the pressure on the hawks. I don’t think they blew the 3-1 lead. Captain Serious is back and he is not losing this series.

    • redwings1977 - May 29, 2013 at 4:41 PM

      Uh, the pressure is on the Hawks because they had the best record in the regular season and now they’re on the verge of being eliminated. Is this a trick question or are Hawks fans just slow?

      • philliesblow - May 29, 2013 at 5:09 PM

        To answer your question, both.

  3. aldub2010 - May 29, 2013 at 6:26 PM

    Insults over the internet. How original. Let’s see what you will be saying after tonight.

  4. al4bundy - May 29, 2013 at 6:49 PM

    Like I said Hawk Fans since we went down 3-1 , we got em right where we want em!
    Let’s Go Blackhawks….

  5. johnnycash19 - May 29, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    How do you guys think Chicago has momentum? Didn’t Detroit have “momentum” going into game 5?

    Either way. Detroit is what, 3-2 under Babcock in game 7’s (the ones I can think of).

    Lost in 2009 @ home to Pitt
    Lost in 2011 on the road to San Jose after being down 0-3 in the series.
    Won in 2009 @ home against Anaheim
    Won in 2010 on the road against Phoenix
    Won in 2013 on the road against Anaheim

    Detroit definitely has a shot.

  6. valoisjoeybfeld69 - May 29, 2013 at 6:57 PM

    Which Wings team will show up tonight? Will it be the team that will be awesome next year with all the experience acquired since Jan? Or, will it be the team who was still learning the system and struggled through 48 games?

  7. steelers4385 - May 29, 2013 at 7:00 PM

    I hate the whiney blackhawks. Unfortunatley they are gunna win. If detroit was so good they would have closed them out when needed. Not give them all the momentum and go back to there house for game 7. Thats just stupid

  8. FoozieGrooler - May 29, 2013 at 7:13 PM

    Na na na na.
    Na na na na.
    Hey hey hey.

  9. badgerbuck - May 29, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Detroit 3 hawks 1 big changes coming in Chicago next few weeks

  10. chrisz64 - May 29, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    As a Detroiter, I am SO tired of “Doc and Company” who are SO biased toward Chicago! What is wrong with MSNBC?

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