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It's no mystery to anyone paying attention to the NHL that the Central Division is one of, if not the strongest division in the NHL.
It's also no mystery that the Detroit Red Wings, once the class of the division, are now feeling the heat on their collective heels from everyone besides the Blue Jackets (who are still better than people realize or give them credit for).
As such, this is a statement game for the Wings. They were embarrassed by St. Louis in the season opener and have taken the week to find their game legs. Getting Todd Bertuzzi back is huge for the top six, and Brendan Smith has looked great so far in this young season.
The time is now to issue a warning to Central Division foes: "Don't sleep on us" needs to be the message here.
Chicago has yet to lose a game, and Kane, Hossa and Toews have been alarmingly effective so far. If the Red Wings can hand the 'Hawks their first loss, it'll give them some breathing room in the standings and in the press.
Tales of Detroit's demise have been swirling for a week now. Time to serve the NHL notice.
Franklin Steele is a hockey analyst for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter for someone to talk hockey with 24/7, or like him on Facebook so you can say you liked him before all your friends. He'll make you chili and send you an Internet high-five.