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The Daily: Red Wings Win, But Still Mistake-Prone; Malkin Underrated?



Derek Lalonde, Red Wings coach

Bob Duff’s story on the Detroit Red Wings’ win against Nashville makes it clear that the Red Wings understand that a single triumph hasn’t resolved all of their problems.

“Still things we want to work on but step in the right direction,” said Lucas Raymond, the overtime goal-scorer. Right on the money.

The mistakes are still there, particularly in defensive coverage. Poor decisions. Giving up a coverage goal 1:11 after seizing momentum with a go-ahead goal in the third period.

But accepting that there’s a problem is the first step. At least that’s what is usually said in these situations. The Red Wings have another practice before facing Boston and there will be more emphasis on sorting out defensive situations and managing the game. The bottom line: the Red Wings have gotten sloppy and have lost their confidence.

Detroit is 13-0-1 when scoring five goals. That’s a statistic that weaves together the good and the bad of this team. It’s encouraging that the team has enough skill to produce five goals, but that statistic is not sustainable because all teams tighten up defensively, in preparation for the playoffs, in the second half. It will be much harder for the Red Wings to score. They must improve defensively to stay competitive.

Red Wings In Case You Missed It

  • Alex DeBrincat records Gordie Howe hat trick in win against the Nashville Predators.
  • Red Wings have sloppy moments, but find a way to earn a much-needed overtime win. Lucas Raymond netted the winner.
  • Anatomy of a defensive slump:  Joe Veleno and Jake Walman had the worst numbers in the 2-8-1 run.
  • Michael Hutchinson‘s recent start for Detroit put him in select company when it comes to Detroit’s goalie history.

Red Wings Next Game

Captain Dylan Larkin’s Red Wings are home for their annual New Year’s Eve game Sunday. They play the Atlantic Division rival Boston Bruins in a rare 5 p.m. game. This is Detroit’s fourth meeting against the Bruins. The Red Wings are 2-1 against them this season. Patrick Kane enters the game with a six-game point-scoring streak. Kane has four multiple-point games and 11 points during the game. Meanwhile, Shayne Gostisbehere was -1 in the win against Nashville, leaving him -10 over the past 12 games. By contrast, Jeff Petry is +2 over that same period.

Hockey Now Network

Boston: The Boston Bruins may announce a contract extension for goalie Jeremy Swayman next week. Respect hockey insider Elliotte Friedman speculated about it this week. Jimmy Murphy has the story for BHN.

Colorado: Evan Rawal explains how the Colorado Avalanche earned an ugly win against the St. Louis Blues.

Pittsburgh: How can Evgeni Malkin be heading toward 500 goals and be underrated at the same time? Dan Kingerski’s story captures the essence of the Pittsburgh Penguins star.

San Jose: Injured Logan Couture is getting closer to returning to the San Jose Sharks lineup. There’s no timetable, but coach David Quinn seems optimistic about his return.