Monday kicks off a two-game stretch with a ‘morning’ game against an ornery opponent. Oh fun.

The Detroit Red Wings will be hosting the 0-and-2 Columbus Blue Jackets for a 2-games-in-2-nights stretch beginning Monday at 12 PM EST (on NBCSN and FSD locally).

The Red Wings are aware of both the strangeness with which their body clocks will meet a noon start, as they told the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan…

“It’s definitely different,” forward Robby Fabbri said. “It takes me back to junior (hockey) days when you play in the afternoons. It’s like any other game, you get used to it and get adjusted to the time. You go through the same routine — just earlier in the day.”

A big consideration for an abnormal game-start switch, such as Monday’s game, is the pre-game meal — and what and when to eat.

Hockey players, generally, will have a meal high in carbohydrates and protein some 2-3 hours before a game. But pasta and salmon may not go down easily at 8 or 9 a.m.

“There’s obviously things game-wise that are different, (but) I would say in terms of body clock, this (noon) is the time we practice every day, and they’ve been doing it for months, so I don’t think it’s a huge adjustment,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “Both teams are in the same boat. They (Blue Jackets) have a little more travel involved (coming in from Nashville). Basically the meal you have, and the timing are a little bit different.”

And they’re wary of an 0-and-2 opponent, as Blashill told Kulfan and’s Brett McWethy:

What the Red Wings won’t be doing is taking Columbus lightly. The Blue Jackets were 3-0 against Detroit last season, and a few bounces of the puck could have easily led to a completely different result Saturday night in Nashville. The game was tied, 2-2, midway through the third period.

“We know how good Columbus is,” said Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill. “We know they’ve got one of the very best ‘D’ corps in the league, two top-10 defensemen in the league that play together, and they play lots, and they play all night. We know they’re extremely well-coached; we know they’re going to play hard and we know they’re going to be really hard to get opportunities on. For us to win, we’ve got to compete like crazy.

“I thought we competed fine the first night against Carolina. The second night we competed like crazy and that’s going to have to be the way that we play in order to win.”

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.