Sharks-Red Wings coverage starts tonight at 4pm with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California
Where they stand
Sharks: 7-8-0, 14 points, 4th Pacific Division
Red Wings: 8-6-1, 17 points, 4th Atlantic Division
Sharks: The Sharks are beginning a six-game road trip that will span just 10 days. They concluded a four-game homestand on Tuesday, losing 4-2 to the Islanders, and are 3-8-0 in their last 11 games after starting the season with four consecutive victories. They visit Buffalo tomorrow.
Red Wings: On Saturday, Petr Mrazek made 38 saves in a 1-0 Red Wings win at home over the Capitals. Andreas Athanasiou scored the only goal in what was Detroit’s fourth win in the last five.
Keep an eye on…
Sharks: Tommy Wingels. Pete DeBoer said Tuesday’s game against the Islanders was Wingels’ best of the season, despite the winger not getting on the scoresheet. The Sharks need more production from the 27-year-old, who has just 1 goal and 5 points in 15 games, and a team-worst -5 rating. It appears he’ll get a chance again with Tomas Hertl as his center based on the reported lines at the morning skate.
Red Wings: Pavel Datsyuk. While it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on Datsyuk, that’s especially true tonight as the Detroit star will be making his season debut after ankle surgery. The Magic Man has 9 goals and 24 assists for 33 points in 42 career games against the Sharks. He'll try to spark an offense that has just six goals in the last four games.
Melker Karlsson – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Nikolay Goldobin – Patrick Marleau – Joel Ward
Joonas Donskoi – Tomas Hertl – Tommy Wingels
Matt Nieto – Chris Tierney – Mike Brown
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Brenden Dillon – Matt Tennyson
Martin Jones (confirmed starter)
Justin Abdelkader – Henrik Zetterberg – Pavel Datsyuk
Tomas Tatar – Dylan Larkin – Gustav Nyquist
Riley Sheahan – Andreas Athanasiou – Teemu Pulkkinen
Drew Miller – Luke Glendening – Darren Helm
Niklas Kronwall – Mike Green
Dan DeKeyser – Jonathan Ericsson
Brendan Smith – Alexey Marchenko
Jimmy Howard (confirmed starter)
Goals per game: 2.60 (16th)
Goals-against per game: 2.67 (17th)
Power play: 11.4 percent (30th)
Penalty kill: 77.1 percent (22nd)
Goals per game: 2.27 (25th)
Goals-against per game: 2.40 (9th)
Power play: 17.6 percent (20th)
Penalty kill: 83.3 percent (8th)
Sharks: Ben Smith (head) and Logan Couture (fractured right fibula) are out.
Red Wings: Brendan Smith (illness) is day-to-day. Johan Franzen (concussion symptoms), Brad Richards (upper body), Kyle Quincey (right ankle) and Landon Ferrraro (lower body) are out.
The Red Wings make their only visit to SAP Center on Jan. 7.
The Sharks are 12-3-1 against the Red Wings in the last 16, and 7-1-0 in their last eight at Joe Louis Arena. They split the season series last year.
Odds and ends
*Joel Ward has re-taken the team scoring lead with 14 points (8g, 6a).
*The Sharks’ league-worst power play is 0-for-13 in the last five games.
*San Jose is 1-5-0 when allowing 25 or fewer shots.