The Detroit Red Wings aren’t being given much time to analyze Saturday’s 4-1 home-ice loss to the Vegas Golden Knights. Maybe that’s a good thing.
Detroit will play back-to-back for the third time during the 2022-23 NHL season when they are in Columbus on Sunday night to face the Blue Jackets (6 p.m. ET) at Nationwide Arena.
“When you’re successful in back to backs, it starts with a mindset,” Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde said.
So far, they are 2-0 in the second game of back-to-back scenarios.
“This is the third trip almost identical,” Lalonde said. “We played at home, we traveled right to New Jersey. We played and had success in that game.
Right back to work. #LGRW
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) December 4, 2022
Following a 3-0 win on their home opener agains the Montreal Canadiens on October 14, the Wings were 5-2 winners the next night over the Devils.
“We played at home, traveled right to New York, played the Rangers,” Lalonde continued. “Two more points for us.”
Detroit completed the New York double play. The Red Wings blanked the Islanders 3-0 on November 5. The next night, they were 3-2 overtime winners over the Rangers at Madison Square Garden.
“Now we have another opportunity that’s almost identical,” Lalonde said. “We played at home, now get right on the plane and turn around for (Sunday).”
Rugged Four-Game Road Trip Ahead For Red Wings
The difference, of course, is that this team they are heading into Game 2 of the two games in two nights off a loss. Detroit did blast the Blue Jackets 6-1 in Columbus on November 19 at the conclusion of the club’s previous road trip.
Getting off to a winning start to the current four-game road sojourn could prove even more vital.
“We’ve been good on back-to-backs this year,” Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin said. “We need to come out and play a solid road game. We’re going on the road. We got to have a big trip.”
That might be easier said than done. Following Columbus, Detroit goes to Tampa Bay (Tuesday), Florida (Thursday) and Dallas (Saturday). The Wings haven’t mined many wins out of those destinations in recent years.
Recent history shows Detroit being 2-1 in the last three trips to Tampa Bay. However, the Lightning are holding an 18-2 edge in the past 20 games played there.
At Florida, the Red Wings are 0-4-1 in the last five games and 1-7-1 through the past nine. In Dallas, Detroit is showing an 0-7-2 slate through the past nine visits there.
“There’s moments where we’re with these top teams,” Lalonde said. “There’s moments where we’re even pushing against these top teams, but we need just a little bit more out of our entire game.”
This four-game trip could go a long way toward determining what the future holds for this Red Wings team.