The games are starting back-to-back this weekend, with games on Saturday and Sunday.
That being stated, the three games in four nights could be a huge advantage for the Red Wings. If Detroit can pull off back-to-back victories at home, that already puts the Penguins in a two game hole. With all the momentum gained from the weekend, the two teams only get one day of rest before they are right back at it.
Generally, game three is almost a given to the home team. The home team comes back ready to go with the crowd going nuts, refreshed and re-energized. However in this series, with only one day off in between, this may not be the case.
With three games in four nights, by game three both teams will be more tired than normal. By game three, the Wings injuries could prove to be beneficial to the Penguins.
Lidstrom will be playing games one and two, and after just a small break and an injury, his status is still unknown.
The only way this series will go more than five games is if the Penguins take game one or two at the Joe. If that happens, it is anyone's series.
No one expects that to happen; not because the Wings are that much better than the Pens, but given the front-loaded schedule, along with the depth the Wings have on defense and up front, it will be hard for Crosby and Malkin to get going.
Back-to-back years they take two games to get going; back-to-back games they are in a 2-0 hole, making the Wings back-to-back Stanley Cup Champions.
Wings in Five.