Detroit Red Wings Face Familiar Foes


Clearly overtime still seems to be the Detroit Red Wings true rival on the ice. The Red Wings lost to the Montreal Canadiens 2-1 in overtime on Tuesday. Leading 1-0 with three minutes left, a goal by Alex Galchenyuk tied it up. In OT the Red Wings lost 56 seconds into play on a goal by David Desharnais. This loss gives the Red Wings their second loss in games that aren’t done after 60 minutes in this young season.

Last season the Red Wings were 8-15 when games went into OT or shoot outs. The Red Wings biggest foe last season besides injury, was their inability to win in overtime. Last season in the middle of November the Red Wings lost five straight overtime games. Two happened in overtime while three happened in a shootout.

More from Detroit Red Wings

But why? A team that has Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk logically should not be losing games the way the team did last season. The simple answers would be lack of offense and injury to their usually leading scores. Zetterberg and Datsyuk scored 33 goals together last season. Zetterberg missed a chunk of the season following the Olympics and Datsyuk only played 45 games.

Let us play the compare game just for fun for this offense situation. The Stanley Cup winning LA Kings Jeff Carter had 256 Shots on goal. This lead his team. Two other players had 200 or more shots on goal. Carter had 98 more shots than the Red Wings leader in the same category. The Red Wings scored more goals per game than the Kings did. However, the biggest difference between the two teams, the Kings were 12-8 in games that went into overtime or shootouts.

Injury will hopefully stay to a minimum this season with no Olympics, however Datsyuk made his season debut in Tuesdays game after missing almost a month with a shoulder injury suffered in the preseason. A silver lining though is Zetterberg leads the team with 7 points scored in the first two weeks of the season. With young guys making their debuts with the team and starting to contribute fans can only hope that their overtime play improves and the offense starts to show up.

If the team doesn’t fix its lack of pucks to the back of the net, the 23 year playoff streak that I myself boast about as a fan, will be finished. The teams at the bottom of the pack with the Red Wings last season are much better now and playoff spots won’t be easy to come by this season.