Jan 1, 2014; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Detroit Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk (13) carries the puck around Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Jonathan Bernier (45) in the second period during the 2014 Winter Classic hockey game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Winter Shootout: Red Wings Major Weakness Exposed At The Classic


The Detroit Red Wings have struggled with the shootout this year.  In fact they have struggled to near historic levels. With the talent of Henrik Zetterberg , Pavel Datsyuk, Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss on roster the Red Wings shootout issues are difficult to figure.

Even more disturbing is the Red Wings themselves have no solutions to the problem.

That weakness was exposed for all to see at the Winter Classic when the Red Wings lost to the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 in a shootout.

Beside staying healthy overtime/shootout losses have been the Red Wings Achilles heal this season. 10 of the Red Wings 14 losses have come in overtime. The Detroit Red Wings are 29th in the NHL in overtime/shootout wins (3).  The only team worse is the Nashville Predators.

So why are the Wings having trouble pushing through in overtime.  Are the Wings aging stars just simply tired at the end of regulation? Do the Wings need to use their younger players during shootouts?

Maybe it is time for up and coming players like Gustav Nyquist and Tomas Tatar to get more ice time even when the veterans are healthy.  Maybe it is time to give up on oft injured veterans like Darren Helm.

Whatever the solution may be it is unknown to the Wings coaching staff. They had better figure it out because with the second half of the season upon us continued lack of performance in overtime could coast the Red Wings the playoffs.

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Tags: 2014 Winter Classic Detroit Red Wings

  • flaninerfan

    How about not playing Cleary and Bert on top lines and PP units. These guys better days are well behind them and now only bog down the top end players. Cleary has six POINTS through half the season, yet Babcock keeps playing him like he is a scoring threat. Bert is only a little better. Neither are adept at deflecting point shots, so their role as goalie screener is barely affective.