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Red Wings suffering from post-holiday depression

Detroit has lost each of its last five first games following the Christmas break

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Detroit is an 0-5 skid in it first game back following the holiday break

Coming back from Christmas hasn’t been turning out all that well for the Detroit Red Wings in recent years. Detroit will return to action following the holiday break with a game at Pittsburgh against the Penguins on Wednesday.

The Red Wings are 1-5 in their last six visits to Pittsburgh, but by comparison to the club’s recent post-Christmas slate, that’s actually an impressive output. Over the last five games played immediately following the Christmas shutdown, Detroit is 0-5.

The Wings haven’t won at home (0-2) or on the road (0-3) during that stretch. They even managed to lose a game at Pittsburgh, dropping a 5-2 decision in the Steel City on December 27, 2018.

Red Wings Christmas Skid Coincides with Playoff Absence

Curiously, but perhaps not coincidentally, the holiday slide coincides with Detroit’s ongoing seven-season absence from the Stanley Cup playoffs. This lack of post-Christmas success began on home ice on December 27, 2016. Two goals from Evander Kane enabled the Buffalo Sabres to edge Detroit 4-3 in what would be the last season at Joe Louis Arena.

The following year, also on December 27, the Red Wings lost 3-1 to the Devils at New Jersey. As with the Buffalo game, Detroit was down 2-0 by the end of the first period. This time, it was thanks to a pair of Nico Hischier goals.

The 2019-20 campaign would also see the Red Wings back in action after Christmas on December 27. This was the 5-2 loss to the Penguins. Dylan Larkin gave Detroit a 1-0 lead. However, a pair of second-period power-play goals from Phil Kessel put the Penguins ahead for good.

On Deceember 28, 2019, the Red Wings blew a 3-1 lead and lost 5-4 on the road to the Florida Panthers. There were no December games during the 2020-21 season, the start of which was paused until January by COVID-19. Last season, a COVID-19 outbreak among the Wings delayed their return to the ice post-Christmas to a New Year’s Eve home game against the Washington Capitals. The Capitals skated off with a 3-1 victory

Detroit’s Last Post-Holiday win in 2015

On Boxing Day in 2015, the Red Wings traveled to Nashville on their return from the Christmas holiday and beat the Predators 3-2. Luke Glendening’s third-period goal snapped a 2-2 tie.

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Brendan Smith and Riley Sheahan also scored. Petr Mrazek got the win in Detroit’s most recent post-Christmas triumph.

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