The Detroit Red Wings have turned a lot of heads to start the 2023-24 NHL regular season.
Through 12 games, the Red Wings are 7-4-1, which is good for second place in the Atlantic Division at 15 points.
Detroit took the hockey world by storm when they handed the mighty Boston Bruins their first regulation loss this past week.
And they won in a fashion not many teams have been able to against a Boston team with a sturdy defense core and one of the best goaltending tandems, if not the best, in the league.
After falling behind 2-0, the Red Wings rallied from behind twice to take a 5-4 victory against the team that set the all-time record for most wins in a single season in NHL history last year.
Red Wings Here To Stay As Contenders?
It was a statement that Detroit is here to stay as a contender in the Eastern Conference.
Vegas agrees that the Red Wings have staying power in the Stanley Cup Playoff race.
According to NHL odds, Detroit is +126 to make the postseason.
Since preseason odds came out, they jumped the Ottawa Senators and Buffalo Sabres, who each have +144 odds to make the dance, to land the fifth-most likely odds in the Atlantic Division.
Oddsmakers believe the heavily injured Florida Panthers (-184) and Tampa Bay Lightning (-192) could quickly bounce back. They’re set as the three and four seeds in the Atlantic.
Florida, in particular, could see its injured stars return to the lineup sooner than expected, as Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour are expected back in late November as opposed to their original mid-December timeline.
The Panthers also asserted their dominance over the Red Wings in a 2-0 win at Little Caesars Arena last Thursday.
Still, they sit at 5-4-1 and have seen a slow start from their usually potent offense.
Lightning Hanging In There
The Tampa Bay Lightning have seen a surprise contributor step up in the midst of superstar goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy’s absence with a back injury.
Jonas Johansson has come through big time for Tampa Bay, going 5-1-3 with a .916 save percentage and a 2.87 goals-against average.
It is a huge step up form the 0-2-0 record with a .766 save percentage and a 7.74 goals-against average he put up with their cross-state rival, the Panthers, the previous season.
He has jumpstarted the Lightning to a 5-3-3 start. That’s good for third place in the division, ahead of the star-studded Toronto Maple Leafs.
Vegas odds have the Maple Leafs finishing second behind only the Bruins.
For Red Wings fans feeling adventurous, Detroit is +2000 to win the Atlantic Division. The club is +6500 to win the Stanley Cup.
Those odds will only continue to get shorter and shorter. The Red Wings continue to become one of the most dominant teams in the league.
Detroit has scored the fourth most goals in the league (45). The club is getting contributions from up and down the lineup. This has only shown that it can continue to be sustainable.
In its win against Boston alone, Detroit got goals from its top two lines and its defense.
The second line, in particular, has hit a stride that does not seem to be stopping any time soon.