When: 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Where: Little Caesars Arena in Detroit.
TV: Bally Sports Detroit.
Radio: WXYT-FM (97.1) (Red Wings radio affiliates).
Game notes: The Wings’ tradition of playing on Thanksgiving Eve continues with a visit from the Predators, their former Central Division rivals. The Preds, like the Wings, are in a crowded group of squats fighting for a wild-card spot. While the Wings sit in the top WC spot in the East, the Preds sit fourth among a group of four teams with 20 points in the West, thanks to just seven regulation/overtime victories.
If that seems like a familiar status for Nashville, well, it is; the Preds have finished fourth or fifth in their division in five of the past seven seasons (with a pair of division crowns in 2018-19). Likewise, the key players in mustard and blue are pretty familiar: Forward Filip Forsberg tops the roster in points (19), Juuse Saros is in net (albeit with a sub-par 3.06 GAA and .905 save percentage) and Roman Josi is a perennial Norris Trophy contender; he has four goals and 12 assists in 19 games.
There are a couple new faces to watch out for, however: Free-agent signee Nino Niederreiter has been frisky with nine goals in 19 games. That’s a 43-goal pace despite the 30-year-old never putting up more than 25 in a season, over 11 previous seasons with the Islanders, Wild and Hurricanes. On the young side, forward Juuso Parssinen was called up from the AHL and made a quick impact last week; the 2019 seventh-rounder had two goals and an assist in a 5-4 win over the Islanders on Nov. 17, then had an assist in an OT loss to the Lightning on Nov. 19.
The Wings, meanwhile, have surged with wins in their past two games, thanks to six combined goals from defensemen Ben Chiarot, Filip Hronek, Moritz Seider and Jake Walman.
Both squads, along with the 30 other NHL teams, will have Thanksgiving off. The Wings are back in action at Little Caesars Arena on Friday, hosting the Arizona Coyotes (who are in the middle of a 14-game road trip). The Preds, meanwhile, will have a matinee Friday at home against the defending Stanley Cup champion…