The Detroit Red Wings face the New York Islanders tonight trying to snap a five game losing streak, the Islanders have won three straight games.
The Detroit Red Wings once again fell behind early on Tuesday night against the New Jersey Devils, and they lost 4-3. Falling behind early has been a familiar tune for this team. Losing five straight games have put the Red Wings dead last in the East and nine points out of a playoff spot.
Jared Coreau was just OK as he gave up four goals against a Devils team that is last in the East in goals scored. Neither Coreau or Petr Mrazek have been able to become the clear number one goalie since Jimmy Howard has been out.
For the fifth time in January, the Red Wings gave up a goal in the first five minutes of the game. That really puts them in a tough spot to win games when they trail that early. The Red Wings have given up the first goal of the game in 30 of the 50 games this season. So besides the power-play and defense the Red Wings also have to work on how they start games.
I believe it’s time for this team to sell. Ken Holland said yesterday that this team won’t be a buyer at the trade deadline. That really should never have been a choice. The only choices in my opinion for this team at the deadline are to sell or to stand pat.
Being nine points back of a playoff spot right now shows the Red Wings need to sell. If done correctly this rebuild can be just a couple years instead of a handful or more.
Tonight, the Red Wings face the New York Islanders who are rolling. While the Red Wings have lost five straight, the Islanders have won three straight. Meanwhile the Red Wings are getting Brendan Smith back this weekend, most likely tomorrow against the Nashville Predators.
No starter has been named for tonight’s game but both Mrazek and Coreau have been very shaky. They’ve been so shaky that Jimmy Howard may be able to reclaim that number one starter job when he comes back.
After tonight the Red Wings face the Predators, Blue Jackets, Caps, Blue Jackets, Wild, Blues, Caps, Penguins and the Islanders again. With the exception of the Islanders, every other team would be in the playoffs if the playoffs started today.
The road to get back in the playoff hunt is going to be a long and hard one in these next three weeks. The Red Wings need to be six points or fewer out of the playoffs by the deadline in my opinion to be able to have a shot. They can help themselves tonight by beating the Islanders.
Here is all the important information for tonight’s game:
New York Islanders (22-17-9) at Detroit Red Wings (20-21-9)
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