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Red Wings-Penguins game-day updates: Green out, Zetterberg setting an example, Murray starts for Pit

Of Red Wings-related note this afternoon:

1. On Twitter, from the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan...

Blashill says no Mike Green (ill) again today here in Pittsburgh

And the Free Press's Helene St. James...

Jeff Blashill: ROW (tiebreaker) shouldn't include OT any more with 3-on-3. 3-on-3 just as much of crapshoot. No more hockey than shootouts.

2. St. James filed a morning notebook...

The Red Wings face off against the Pittsburgh Penguins this afternoon (3 p.m., NBC) at PPG Paints Arena. The Penguins have the third-best record in the NHL at 36-18-8, with 80 points. The Wings are 1-1 against the Penguins this season, losing 5-3 in Pittsburgh in December but winning 6-3 at home in January. The Wings do enter this game having toppled the NHL-leading Washington Capitals at home Saturday afternoon, banking two points on the strength of a strong performance from Petr Mrazek and both special teams.

Mrazek will get the start again today. There was no morning skate, but everyone who played Saturday is available, while Mike Green will miss a second straight game because of illness. The Penguins are without defensemen Justin Schultz and Olli Maatta.

As did DetroitRedWings.com's Dana Wakiji:

The captain and alternate captains of the team are expected to set the example for the rest of the team to follow. Captain Henrik Zetterberg continues to do so, even though he is now the oldest active player on the team at 36.

"He's been our best player night in and night out. No question about it," Blashill said. "When you talk about a 200-foot game and playing winning hockey, there's no doubt about it. I came into the year, I was going to watch and see, if his play diminished then his ice time would diminish, but his play has done the opposite. He's demanded that he plays more. And as we've gone through the season he's gotten more and more ice time because of that. It just speaks to what level of player he is."

With two more assists on Saturday, Zetterberg increased his team lead in points to 43.

Thomas Vanek is second with 36. Zetterberg leads all Wings forwards in ice time, averaging 19:28 per game.

Before the season, Zetterberg said he wasn't planning to give any ice time away, the other forwards would have to come take it.

"That's the approach he's taken," Blashill said. "And I was very prepared to diminish his ice time if his play diminished, but he's demanded I play him even more. That's the way it's been. I've talked to our young players about making sure they soak in what his approach is about and how competitive you have to be every single day in order to be an elite player. It's easy to be a flash in the pan, it's easy to be good one night and not good the next. It's hard to be great every night. That's what he is."

3. NHL.com's Wes Crosby's game preview includes a set of probable lineups...

Red Wings projected lineup

Tomas Tatar -- Henrik Zetterberg -- Anthony Mantha

Andreas Athanasiou -- Frans Nielsen -- Thomas Vanek

Justin Abdelkader -- Darren Helm -- Dylan Larkin

Luke Glendening -- Riley Sheahan -- Steve Ott

Danny DeKeyser -- Xavier Ouellet

Brendan Smith -- Niklas Kronwall

Nick Jensen -- Ryan Sproul

Jared Coreau

Petr Mrazek

Scratched: Tomas Jurco

Injured: Jimmy Howard (knee), Jonathan Ericsson (wrist), Mike Green (illness)

Suspended: Gustav Nyquist

Penguins projected lineup

Chris Kunitz -- Sidney Crosby -- Jake Guentzel

Carl Hagelin -- Evgeni Malkin -- Patric Hornqvist

Scott Wilson -- Nick Bonino -- Phil Kessel

Tom Kuhnhackl -- Matt Cullen -- Eric Fehr

Brian Dumoulin -- Kris Letang

Ian Cole -- Chad Ruhwedel

Steve Oleksy -- Trevor Daley

Matt Murray

Marc-Andre Fleury

Scratched: Carter Rowney

Injured: Conor Sheary (upper body), Bryan Rust (upper body), Justin Schultz (concussion), Olli Maatta (hand)

4. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Jonathan Bombulie filed a game-day notebook from the Penguins' perspective...

No morning skate for a 3 p.m., but a couple of quick notes before the Penguins take on the Red Wings.

— Matt Murray will start in goal. He’s 4-0-2 with a .949 save percentage in his last six starts.

— As far as injured players go, Conor Sheary (upper body) continues to skate on his own. Justin Schultz (concussion) and Bryan Rust (upper body) are “status quo” in coach Mike Sullivan’s words.

As did the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Jason Mackey:

*** The Red Wings are coming off a 3-2 shootout win over the Capitals yesterday at Joe Louis Arena. It snapped a five-game stretch where they went 0-4-1.

*** Goaltender Petr Mrazek gets the start and has bounced back over his past handful. In addition to 34 saves Saturday, Mrazek has finished with a save percentage of at least .940 in four of his last six starts.

*** A win today would tie Murray with Jake Allen (2014-15) for the most wins by a rookie goaltender (22) over the past five seasons.

*** No morning skate, but I wouldn’t expect much shuffling with lines:

Kunitz-Crosby-Guentzel

Hagelin-Malkin-Hornqvist

Wilson-Bonino-Kessel

Kuhnhackl-Cullen-Fehr

*** As for defensive pairings, I could see Sullivan using Cameron Gaunce instead of Steve Oleksy given Detroit’s preference to play more of a skating game and a less heavy one.

Not like Gaunce is Kris Letang, but he’s a little better playing that style than Oleksy. Minor tweak, though.

*** Penguins are 24-3-3 at home this season, including a mark of 17-1-2 in their past 20 here. ... Friday marked the fifth time in the last eight games the Penguins have played into overtime. ... The penalty kill is 8 for 8 over the last three games. ... Pittsburgh has won six of its last eight home games against Detroit.

5. If you're interested, the "7 Sports Cave" crew discussed possible Wings trades on WXYZ this morning.

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Is Green really sick? Not trade related?

Posted by VPalmer on 02/19/17 at 03:01 PM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.

 

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