The Buffalo Sabres will host the Detroit Red Wings this afternoon at KeyBank Centre in Buffalo, NY. The game is an afternoon matinee at 3:00 PM ET.
This is the final preseason game for each team before final rosters are announced and the teams prepare for opening night.
Detroit head coach Jeff Blashill indicated earlier this week that he would like his final roster set prior to this game. Michael Rasmussen and Givani Smith are still nursing minor injuries and will not dress.
General Manager Steve Yzerman indicated that the team will carry 13 forwards, eight defensemen, and two goaltenders on the 23-man roster. Prior to game time, the Red Wings had 35 players remaining in camp: 21 forwards, 11 defensemen and three goaltenders.
Red Wings on the Bubble
This is the last chance for several forwards to make an impression and make decisions difficult for Steve Yzerman and his management team.
I would love to see Joe Veleno make the team. Other than continuing to work on his offensive game, Veleno appears ready to make the jump full-time to the NHL.
If Yzerman believes that Bobby Ryan deserves a chance to play with the Red Wings, he needs to sign Ryan to a contract this week. After this game, Ryan’s PTO is over and a final decision on his status will be decided soon.
Jonatan Berggren has been improving every game that he has played. It may be too little too late for the skilled winger. Berggren will probably start the season in the AHL and should be one of the first players recalled when there is an injury to a forward.
Lucas Raymond should make this team. He has been fairly consistent throughout the preseason and continues to pile up points at an alarming rate.
Riley Barber deserved a chance to make this roster. He was the top scorer at Grand Rapids (AHL) last year. Earlier this week, he scored a terrific goal and showed that when given ice time, he can contribute at the NHL level.
In the offseason, Taro Hirose re-signed with the Red Wings hoping that he would be given a chance to play in the NHL. Even if he doesn’t crack the opening night roster, Hirose will likely play some games for the Red Wings this season.
The Red Wings will host the two-time defending Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning in their home opener Thursday October 14th at LCA. Game time is 7:30 PM ET.