Detroit — Many of the young Red Wings prospects will get a test Tuesday night in Chicago.
The Blackhawks are expected to play many of their veterans in the exhibition opener for both teams, while the Red Wings will bring an extremely young roster.
One line, in particular, that stands out is Dylan Larkin centering Anthony Mantha and Teemu Pulkkinen, which likely will see time against Chicago’s Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane.
But coach Jeff Blashill doesn’t mind that, at all.
“All those guys want a chance to show they can be impact players in the NHL,” Blashill said. “I assume they’ll play against a good line in Chicago and it gives them a chance to show they’re not only good young players, but they can be good players.”
Jimmy Howard will start in net for the Red Wings, but likely to split time with Tom McCollum.
As for the young Red Wings, they are looking forward to playing against players other than teammates, and especially against the defending Stanley Cup champions in an exciting atmosphere.
Andreas Athanasiou remembers his first NHL exhibition game vividly.
It was two years ago against Chicago, at United Center, and even if it was the exhibition game, it left an impression.
“It was sold out, I couldn’t believe it, it was crazy,” said Athanasiou, who’ll center Tyler Bertuzzi and Evgeny Svechnikov, the 2015 first-round draft pick. “A great atmosphere, and they have a good team over there, too.”
Svechnikov is looking forward to going against a former world junior teammate from Russia (Artemi Panarin), but also the excitement of playing an NHL exhibition game.
“It’s going to be a lot of fun, the game is going to be huge,” Svechnikov said. “I’m real excited.”
Svechnikov will be returning to his junior team in Quebec shortly, but has been soaking up everything he can learn this pro camp.
“A lot of learning stuff,” Svechnikov said. “First time for this at this level, and I’ve been watching them (older teammates) and learning all the coaches are teaching. The O(ffensive)-zone, the D(efensive)-zone, and neutral zone. All the new systems.
“It’s been a lot of new stuff.”