With the All*Star weekend behind us, the Detroit Red Wings look to get back in the win column. Leading up to the break, the Wings couldn't keep a 8 game winning streak going when the Montreal Canadians embarrassed the Wings 7-2 at the Bell Center on the Wednesday night. "I'm not going to watch any video of this, at all," Detroit coach Mike Babcock said. "I'm going to have a drink. Actually, it is what I'm going to do." The Wings looked disorganized, loosing puck battles that they normally win, standing and watching the Canadians skate with the puck. Perhaps the Wings shut it down with the rest of the league on Tuesday 24th. Some thought the absence of Captain Nik Lidstrom my have had something to do with the play of the Wings. "Nick's a great player, but I don't think this had anything to do with Nick," Babcock said. Whatever it was, I hope it's out of their system.
I was reminded by a fellow blogger DArm91 on nhlfanchat.com about the 7-1 thrashing the Wings were handed, by the Washington Capitals on October 22, 2011. I had filed that game in the deepest, darkest place in my mind, and for good reason. The Capitals put the kibosh on a 6 game winning streak to start the Wings season, and put them on a 6 game loosing streak in return. In that span of 6 games the Wings were unable to score more then 2 goals and shutout once. My hockey superstitions are heightened, thanks DArm91.
Granted the Wings are in mid-season forum, but there's no need for a 6 game skid now. (13-14) on the road the Red Wings continue their 4 game road trip, before making their way home to Joe Louis Arena where the Wings are a lock. First stop Calgary to take on the Flames Tue, January 31. The Flames (52) find themselves 3 points back of 8th spot Minnesota. With a home record of (13-7-2) and the resurgence of Captain Jerome Iginla, Calgary won't make it easy for the Wings. The league leading Red Wings (67) make their way to Vancouver Thurs Feb 2, to take on the Canucks (64). This team is very disciplined with 4 lines that can score. Of coarse the main two guys to watch is the mental telepathy playing Sedin twins. These guys seem to play with one brain (that's a compliment). The Canucks PP is lethal, so the Wings can't get caught up in (Alex) Burrows & (Ryan) Kessler's shenanigans. Saturday nights tilt brings the Wings into Edmonton to face the speedy Oilers (41) Home record (12-8-3). This Oilers squad was the feel good story of the NHL in the beginning, but then the injury bug infected the dressing room and didn't leave till it was to late for them to recover. Still the Wings can't take them lightly, they're fast, skilled and very creative with the puck. So after a three city Western Canada trip, the Wings head to the desert Mon Feb 6th (who makes this schedule?) to face the NHL owned and operated Phoenix Coyotes (52). The Yotes always play the Wings tough with veteran leader Shane Doan. Catching the Wings at the end of their road trip might be good for the Coyotes to stay in the playoff picture with a win.
The Wings need to get out of the gate quick, if they can make it home with a 2-2 split, i can live with that. It's ill-advised to start a losing streak at this point of the season. GO WINGS!!
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