[7:30 PM] Blue Jackets @ Red Wings

Who will WIN this matchup?

Columbus Blue Jackets (15-5-4)

@ Detroit Red Wings (13-11-3)


Starting Goalies:

Sergei Bobrovsky(CBJ): Confirmed

Petr Mrazek(DET): Confirmed


The Columbus Blue Jackets look to continue their surge toward the top of the Metropolitan Division as they attempt to extend a trio of streaks when they visit the Detroit Red Wings on Friday. Columbus, which has the fewest amount of regulation losses in the league with five, trails Pittsburgh and the New York Rangers for first in the division with several games in hand on both rivals.

Dalton Prout will be spending some time in Cleveland as he was loaned to the American Hockey League club for conditioning purposes. The 26-year-old defenseman, who hasn’t played for Columbus since Nov. 12 due to a back injury, has recorded eight penalty minutes and a plus-2 rating in eight games this season. Rookie blue-liner Zach Werenski is expected to be in the lineup against Detroit despite a recent death in the family.

Detroit will be getting healthier beginning Friday, as Andreas Athanasiou is expected to be back in the lineup after missing 11 games with knee injury. Goaltender Jimmy Howard (groin) and defenseman Alexey Marchenko (shoulder) joined Athanasiou as full participants in Thursday’s practice and also may play against Columbus, with the latter almost certain to return Sunday versus Philadelphia at the latest.

At worst, Howard will serve as G Petr Mrazek’s backup as he was activated from injured reserve on Wednesday while Jared Coreau was assigned to Grand Rapids of the AHL.

Columbus C Sam Gagner is coming off a four-point performance versus Arizona on Monday after notching just one over his previous six games.

After scoring a career-high 14 goals last season, Detroit C Riley Sheahan has failed to tally in the first 27 games of 2016-17.


StreakSmarts Pick: Columbus Blue Jackets

Confidence: 5/10

StreakSmarter Pick