Five NHL questions: Red Wings move east, goalie battles pickup in Philly

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Spo

A daily feature which asks the five biggest questions about today's NHL action. Will they be answered? (That doesn't count as one of the five questions.)

1. How will the Red Wings fare in their Eastern Conference debut?

It took several years, but the Detroit Red Wings have finally moved to the Eastern Conference. The franchise will be welcomed to the daunting Atlantic Division by the Buffalo Sabres in a nationally televised game. Considering the different expectation levels for the teams, Detroit should open their season on a strong note. Will they?

2. Will Alfredsson and/or Weiss make a mark in their debuts?

A new group of geographic rivals isn't the only substantial change for the Red Wings, as the franchise managed to acquire Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss via free agency. The two players are projected to play on the second line with Johan Franzen. The trio experienced some growing pains in the preseason. Will all the kinks be worked out for opening night?

3. Beginning of the end for Miller, Vanek?

The rumors surrounding Ryan Miller and Thomas Vanek were extensive this offseason. If things play out the way many think they will, Miller and Vanek will no longer be with the Sabres beyond March's trade deadline. With that being said, both players will be motivated to improve their value and Miller will be vying for a spot on USA's Olympic roster for Sochi. How will the two players perform in their potential last, first game with Buffalo?

4. How will Round 2 of the Maple Leafs goalie battle go? What about Round 1 for Philly?

The Toronto Maple Leafs will stage the second installment of their goalie battle, when Jonathan Bernier makes his debut for the club. Incumbent starter James Reimer got the nod on Tuesday night and came away with a win. Bernier will be looking to one-up his teammate.

Conversely, the Philadelphia Flyers have a goalie battle of their own as Ray Emery and Steve Mason vie for the starter's position. Mason will be making the first start of the season based upon his performance at the end of last season.

How will both players perform?

5. How will MacKinnon do in his debut?

Nathan MacKinnon is expected to make his NHL debut with the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday night. Having been selected with the No. 1 overall pick in the NHL draft, a high-level of expectation has been placed on the prospective forward and his coach, Patrick Roy, has set a high bar for him to shoot for. MacKinnon will spend the entire year with the Avalanche and is projected to center the third line with Jamie McGinn and Steve Downie on his wings. How will he do?

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