The Detroit Red Wings would like to forget about their result that occurred last year when they fell to the Tampa Bay Lightning in seven games, losing 2-0 in a heart breaker in game seven at the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. Tampa Bay went on to the Stanley Cup Finals where they lasted six games before losing against the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Red Wings players had to watch from their couches back home, a team they were a few seconds away from gaining a win against in game three which would have given them an extra win and had them advance to the next round. But now, they will first try to seek revenge on the team that stole their Stanley Cup aspirations last year this Wednesday night in Tampa Bay.
How the Red Wings Plan on changing last year's result
This Red Wings roster contains the majority of last years players. However, this year the Wings are healthier than they were at this point last season. Veteran goaltender Jimmy Howard has proven himself to be the starter over the young talent Petr Mrazek who hasn't been the same since his injury on Valentine's Day. Rookie Head Coach Jeff Blashill took over this team after long time Stanley Cup winning coach Mike Babcock left for Toronto.
Blashill earned his team the sixth seed in the playoffs and a third place finish in the Atlantic Division while managing to keep a majority of his players healthy. Along with keeping most of their key components, the Wings also picked up rookie sensation Dylan Larkin, the Wings only All-Star this year. The rookie phenomenon won the Speed Competition at this years All Star Game breaking the 20 year record. Larkin has added a key role to a forward group already blessed with the talents of such players as Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk.
How this year's series will differ from last years
Although Tampa Bay may have a similar roster to what they had last year, injuries may get the best of them this series. The Lightning will be missing their captain Steven Stamkos, who has experienced a blood clot, and co-lead defense-man Anton Stralman, who experienced a leg injury earlier in the season and is still not in the line-up. While the Red Wings may be missing Drew Miller, who has been on and off the injured reserve list with multiple injuries, and Johan Franzen, who has been out for almost all of the games this season with recurring symptoms from a concussion.
The Lightning may have the short end of the stick when it comes to injuries, they also didn't add any key players in the off-season that made a huge impact for their team, such as the Red Wings have in Dylan Larkin. Predictions will be made prior to Wednesday night for both teams, but the playoffs bring parody along with unpredictability so all of the theories and standings go to the wayside when the puck hits the ice.