The Chicago Blackhawks attempt to set a franchise record with their sixth consecutive victory to start the season when they host the Central Division-rival Detroit Red Wings on Sunday. Chicago edged the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 on Saturday to match the 1971-72 club for the best start in franchise history. Four of the Blackhawks' five wins have come on the road, where they play their next six games following Sunday's contest.
Detroit is coming off a 5-3 home victory over the Minnesota Wild on Friday. Todd Bertuzzi scored twice in his season debut while Pavel Datsyuk added a goal and two assists as the Red Wings finally broke through on the power play, tallying twice on five opportunities. They had gone 0-for-15 with the man advantage over their first three games of the campaign.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN (Detroit), CSN (Chicago)
ABOUT THE RED WINGS (2-2-0): Detroit played without three of its top six defensemen on Friday. Jonathan Ericsson and Carlo Colaiacovo were out with a shoulder injury while Ian White missed the contest with a lacerated leg. The Red Wings did get a player back on the blue line, however, as Jakub Kindl returned from a groin injury to make his season debut. Bertuzzi missed the first three games of the season with the flu, although he initially was diagnosed with mononucleosis.
ABOUT THE BLACKHAWKS (5-0-0): Right wing Jamal Mayers played in his second consecutive game after being scratched for Chicago's first three contests. The rugged Mayers saw only 4:44 of ice time on seven shifts and was involved in a fight with Columbus' Jared Boll in the second period. "I'm not going to change how I've played for the last 17 years," Mayers said. "I'm just going to play hard and keep it simple and skate and do the things I've done my whole career."
1. The Blackhawks went 4-0-2 against the Red Wings last season, earning 10 of a possible 12 points.
2. Detroit C Darren Helm also made his season debut Friday after missing the first three contests with a back injury.
3. Chicago has lost to Detroit in regulation just once in the last 11 meetings between the Original Six rivals.
PREDICTION: Blackhawks 4, Red Wings 2.