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Slow Starts Need Improvement… Fast

The Red Wings haven’t made winning games easy on themselves lately. While injuries and poor defensive zone coverage have been problems this season, of bigger concern is the Wings lackluster starts.

Saturday night’s game against the Buffalo Sabres highlighted this problem. The Red Wings were outplayed by the Sabres in the first period  allowing them to score two early goals taking a 2-0 lead in the game. The Red Wings eventually came back winning the game 3-2 in overtime, this pattern of late starts has become far too common place.

It is a long season and injuries and travel take a … Continue Reading

1980 Miracle Likely Once in a Life Time

“You were born to be a player. You were meant to be here. This moment is yours.” Herb Brooks (RIP)

Thirty-one years ago today a group of American born college students completed the unthinkable. Having already defeated the mighty Russians 4-3, the unsung Americans would come from behind and defeat team Finland 4-2 to take the gold medal.

Much has been said and written about this team of upstart Americans who were virtually unknown playing in the college ranks. Their opponents were older and better – at least on paper – and none was better than team Russia who essentially fielded … Continue Reading

Ericsson’s Inconsistency Becoming Costly

Jonathan Ericsson seems to be slipping back to bad habits. After starting the season strong, the 26 year-old defenseman is starting to make mental mistakes that are costing the Red Wings.

Tonight’s offensive zone turnover to Ryan Clowe was just the latest example of poor decision making by the big Swede. Clowe blocked Ericsson’s shot and skated the puck in on a breakaway eventually scoring on a defenseless Jimmy Howard.

The play was reminiscent of last season where Ericsson struggled to find his game. The Karlskrona, Sweden native told the media in November of 2010 that he had been understandably … Continue Reading

Disastrous Effort in Nashville Ignites Wings

The Red Wings look like a completely different team than the one that lost 3-0 and 4-1 to the Nashville Predators just last week. Detroit is now on a five game winning streak after a shootout win against the Minnesota Wild on Sunday.

The Wings, who have struggled with consistency and turnovers all season, have played some their best hockey all season. They even seem to be playing better defensively while out scoring the opposition by a 22 to 9 margin.

The turning point came after a horrendous 4-1 loss to Nashville which saw a depleted Red Wings struggle to keep … Continue Reading

Mursak Well Worth the Early Contract Extension

The Red Wings secured a piece of their future by inking Jan Mursak to a two-year contract extension. Mursak, who is out of waiver options after this season, could play in Detroit full time next season.

The 23 year-old forward play 17 games in the NHL this season, scoring his first career goal. Mursak proved he could play at the NHL level with his speed and skill. The Maribor, Slovenia native has vastly improved his defensive game after spending three full seasons in Grand Rapids.

Mursak’s path to the NHL hasn’t always been smooth and his position in the Red Wings … Continue Reading

From Maine to Michigan: Small Swede Could Make Big Impact

There wasn’t anything shocking about the Red Wings selecting a smallish skilled Swede late in the 2008 NHL draft. The surprise came when Gustav Nyquist announced his plans to attend the University of Maine later that year.

Nyquist, who is currently in his junior year with Maine, is taking an unconventional development path for a Swedish born player. The 21 year-old forward chose to leave home early to learn the North American game in the hopes of eventually playing at the professional level. His strong work ethic, all around game and hockey sense have helped him become a key player for the … Continue Reading

Stuart’s Return Good News For Wings, Bad News for Kindl

While Brad Stuart‘s return will provide a boost to the Red Wings, it likely means rookie Jakub Kindl‘s consistent ice time is coming to an end. Stuart is slated to play in Thursday’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning after sitting 15 games with a broken jaw.

The former 19th overall selection in the 2005 NHL draft filled in more than admirably during Stuart’s absence. Kindl used the opportunity to gain experience and confidence while playing with veteran Ruslan Salei on the third pairing.

Expectations for the 6-foot-3, 210 pound defenseman have been high since being the highest Red Wings draft … Continue Reading

Days of the Big Deadline Deal Long Gone for Detroit

The NHL trade deadline used to be a day similar to Christmas for the Detroit Red Wings. In the pre-salary cap era, Ken Holland and the Red Wings front office were never afraid to make a big move to fill a potential gap.

Detroit routinely sent prospects and draft picks packing for big name players that they believed would bolster their Stanley Cup chances. The Red Wings didn’t seem bothered by trades that involved top prospects or high end draft picks, knowing they could fill holes via free agency. Detroit also had a reputation for drafting quality players later in … Continue Reading

Red Wings Need to Get Back to Basics

The Red Wings are clearly struggling. Last night’s dismal 4-1 loss to the Predators was just the latest example of a team that has lost focus. Getting healthy bodies back in the lineup will help, but it is not the overall solution and may even cause confusion until chemistry can be re-established.

Having lost three of the last five games, the Wings need to put a stop to the sloppy uninspired play before the major playoff push begins. A consistent problem this season has been the slow starts which routinely allows the opposition to score early goals and put Detroit at … Continue Reading

Hard Working Miller Keeps Proving He’s Here To Stay

Nothing has come easy for Drew Miller. The 6-foot-2, 170 pound forward helped the Red Wings earn a playoff spot last season after being picked up off of waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning in November. Detroit claimed the 26 year-old forward to add immediate depth to a roster riddled with injuries. They eventually intended to send him down to Grand Rapids of the AHL.

Miller’s strong play coupled with a continuing injury problems kept the forward in Detroit for the remainder of the season. After becoming a restricted free agent over the summer, Miller would eventually sign a one … Continue Reading

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