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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, March 29th (All times Eastern)

Detroit Red Wings (33-26-14) at Toronto Maple Leafs (36-31-8), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Detroit Red Wings' longest winless stretch in three months has prevented the club from separating itself in the wild card race.

The Toronto Maple Leafs' longest losing streak since 2010 has their playoff hopes in serious doubt.

The two clubs look to get on track Saturday night, when the Leafs try to snap a seven-game slide against a Red Wings team looking to win for the first time in four contests.

Detroit and Toronto are two of four teams tied for the two wild card spots in the Eastern Conference with 80 points. The Red Wings, Columbus Blue Jackets and Washington Capitals all have nine games remaining on the season, while the Maple Leafs have seven left to play.

That has Toronto on the outside of the playoff picture, while the Red Wings and Blue Jackets have the current tiebreaker over the Capitals with more non- shootout wins.

Washington is hosting the Boston Bruins on Saturday afternoon, while Columbus is set to visit the Carolina Hurricanes in the evening.

The Maple Leafs seemed in prime position to make the playoffs for a second straight season just weeks ago, but have lost seven in a row in regulation. That is the longest losing streak for the club since an 0-6-2 slide from Oct. 28-Nov. 13, 2010.

Toronto doesn't have much time to regroup after dropping a 4-2 road decision to the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday night. That setback did see winger James van Riemsdyk set a club record by scoring just four seconds into the second period, but it wasn't enough.

Dave Bolland also scored and Jonathan Bernier allowed four goals on 29 shots faced.

"I think our work ethic and all that stuff has been good. We haven't quit, we've played hard to the end," noted van Riemsdyk, who bested Mats Sundin's previous club record set when he scored six seconds into overtime on Dec. 30, 1995.

"Like I said, sometimes we just aren't getting those bounces and we're just going to have to find a way to just clean things up a little bit more where we're not making any mistakes because it seems like when we do we're not getting the bounces that we need."

That is especially true for Toronto's goaltenders. Bernier has allowed four goals in both games he has played since returning from a five-game absence caused by a groin injury, while James Reimer has yielded 18 goals over a personal five-game losing streak.

It is unknown who will start the back end of consecutive games on consecutive days. Bernier is 2-1-1 with a 2.85 goals against average versus the Red Wings, while Reimer has gone 0-2-0 with a 3.94 GAA when facing them.

Toronto opens a four-game homestand tonight and will then close the season with three straight on the road. The Leafs are 22-14-1 at home on the season.

The Red Wings are trying to avoid missing the postseason for the first time since 1990 and remain without a number of injured players, including Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk. They come into this key meeting having gone 0-2-1 in their last three games, the longest winless stretch for the Red Wings since they went 0-4-2 from Dec. 7-17.

Detroit tried to rally on Thursday night against the visiting Montreal Canadiens, but came up short in a 5-4 decision. Tomas Tatar scored twice in a span of just over three minutes in the third period to tie the game, but the Habs went back on top 78 seconds later.

Montreal then restored a two-goal edge before Johan Franzen tallied to get the Red Wings within a goal, but another comeback was not in the cards.

"Catch-up hockey is losing hockey," Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock said.

Riley Sheahan recorded a goal and an assist in the loss, but Jimmy Howard stopped just 24-of-29 shots.

Babcock said Howard is his likely starter for tonight as the Red Wings also are set to host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday. Howard is 1-1-1 in his career against Toronto with a 2.61 GAA.

The Red Wings have won two of three against the Maple Leafs this season, with the lone setback coming in a shootout on Jan. 1 outdoors at Michigan Stadium.

Detroit's 5-4 shootout victory on Dec. 21 snapped a four-game series road losing streak as the Red Wings won in Toronto for the first time since Nov. 16, 2002.

03/29 10:30:15 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ROC 8
DUR 2
 
2:30pm Friday
STONYBROOK
NCSTATE
 
7:05pm Friday
SYR
DUR
 
6:35pm Saturday
SYR
DUR
 
5:05pm Sunday
SYR
DUR
 
Final
TEX 3
CLE 12
Final
COL 6
CIN 4
Final
MIA 2
PIT 5
Final
CWS 5
TOR 3
 
Final
KAN 2
NYY 4
 
Final
BOS 4
MIN 6
Final
PHI 0
NYM 7
 
Final
SEA 3
TAM 0
8th
SFG 2
MIL 1
 
3rd
DET 0
OAK 0
 
4:35pm Today
HOU
BAL
8:05pm Tonight
WAS
CHC
8:15pm Tonight
ARI
STL
10:05pm Tonight
SDP
ANA
10:10pm Tonight
ATL
LOS
1:05pm Thursday
CWS
BAL
 
4:35pm Thursday
CWS
BAL
 
8:05pm Thursday
BOS
TEX
 
10:05pm Thursday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Thursday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Thursday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Thursday
PIT
SDP
 
10:15pm Thursday
ATL
SFG
 
4:05pm Friday
KAN
CHC
 
7:05pm Friday
COL
PHI
 
7:05pm Friday
TAM
BAL
 
7:10pm Friday
MIA
NYM
 
7:10pm Friday
WAS
CIN
 
8:05pm Friday
BOS
TEX
 
8:10pm Friday
ARI
MIL
 
8:10pm Friday
CWS
HOU
 
8:10pm Friday
TOR
MIN
 
8:15pm Friday
LOS
STL
 
10:05pm Friday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Friday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Friday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Friday
PIT
SDP
 
10:15pm Friday
ATL
SFG
 
2:10pm Saturday
TOR
MIN
 
3:05pm Saturday
COL
PHI
 
4:05pm Saturday
TAM
BAL
 
4:10pm Saturday
ARI
MIL
 
4:10pm Saturday
CWS
HOU
 
4:10pm Saturday
MIA
NYM
 
4:10pm Saturday
WAS
CIN
 
7:15pm Saturday
BOS
TEX
 
7:15pm Saturday
KAN
CHC
 
7:15pm Saturday
LOS
STL
 
10:05pm Saturday
ATL
SFG
 
10:05pm Saturday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Saturday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Saturday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Saturday
PIT
SDP
 
1:10pm Sunday
MIA
NYM
 
1:10pm Sunday
WAS
CIN
 
1:35pm Sunday
COL
PHI
 
1:35pm Sunday
TAM
BAL
 
2:10pm Sunday
ARI
MIL
 
2:10pm Sunday
CWS
HOU
 
2:10pm Sunday
TOR
MIN
 
2:15pm Sunday
LOS
STL
 
2:20pm Sunday
KAN
CHC
 
3:05pm Sunday
BOS
TEX
 
4:05pm Sunday
ATL
SFG
 
4:05pm Sunday
NYY
OAK
 
4:10pm Sunday
CLE
SEA
 
8:05pm Sunday
DET
ANA
 
9:10pm Sunday
PIT
SDP
 
9:00pm Tonight
HOU
GSW
9:00pm Friday
GSW
HOU
 
9:00pm Sunday
HOU
GSW
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
CHI
8:00pm Friday
TAM
NYR
 
8:00pm Saturday
CHI
ANA
 
12:00pm Friday
AUBURN
CHARLESTON
 
1:00pm Friday
CALIFORNIA
CCAROLINA
 
1:00pm Friday
COLUMBIA
ECAROLINA
 
1:00pm Friday
ORALROBRTS
ARKANSAS
 
1:00pm Friday
OREGON
IOWA
 
1:00pm Friday
SFLORIDA
FAU
 
1:00pm Friday
WRIGHTST
NOTREDAME
 
2:00pm Friday
MICHIGAN
BRADLEY
 
2:30pm Friday
STONYBROOK
NCSTATE
 
2:30pm Friday
TEXAS
OREGONST
 
3:00pm Friday
INDIANA
RADFORD
 
3:30pm Friday
ULLAFAYETE
RICE
 
4:00pm Friday
LEHIGH
LSU
 
6:00pm Friday
CANISIUS
SWMISSOURI
 
6:00pm Friday
CLEMSON
ARIZONAST
 
6:00pm Friday
MERCER
FLORIDAST
 
6:00pm Friday
MOREHEADST
LOUISVILLE
 
6:00pm Friday
VIRGINIA
USC
 
7:00pm Friday
FIU
MIAFLA
 
7:00pm Friday
FLAAM
FLORIDA
 
7:00pm Friday
MARYLAND
MISS
 
7:00pm Friday
SACREDHART
TCU
 
7:00pm Friday
STJOHNS
OKLAHOMAST
 
7:00pm Friday
TSOUTHERN
TEXASAM
 
7:00pm Friday
VCU
DALLASBAPT
 
8:00pm Friday
HSTNBAPT
HOUSTON
 
8:00pm Friday
LIPSCOMB
VANDERBILT
 
8:00pm Friday
OHIO
ILLINOIS
 
8:00pm Friday
TULANE
NWILMINGTN
 
10:00pm Friday
PEPPERDINE
FULLERTON
 
10:00pm Friday
SANDIEGOST
CSANTABAR
 
11:00pm Friday
CSBAKER
UCLA
 
Final
ROC 8
DUR 2
 
7:05pm Friday
SYR
DUR
 
6:35pm Saturday
SYR
DUR
 
5:05pm Sunday
SYR
DUR