Kings-Red Wings Preview 3-9-12

(AP) — The Detroit Red Wings haven’t been themselves without their injured stars and have slipped four points off the pace in the Western Conference standings.

After their latest defeat, the Los Angeles Kings hope they haven’t reverted back to their low-scoring ways.

Detroit seeks to avoid its fourth loss in five home games Friday night when it faces Los Angeles.

The Red Wings (43-21-3) have played their last four games without reigning Norris Trophy winner Nicklas Lidstrom, and they fell to 2-4-1 during Pavel Datsyuk’s current absence with a 3-2 loss at Philadelphia on Tuesday.

Detroit also played without standout goaltender Jimmy Howard, who left after the first period of a 2-1 loss to Chicago on Sunday with a groin strain.

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