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Detroit Red Wings

Red Wings Should Send David Rittich Flowers or Something



Red Wings bench

The Detroit Red Wings owe journeyman goalie David Rittich a drink, or at least a thank you note.

Rittich made 26 saves to spark the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-0 win against the New York Islanders. That outcome put the Red Wings back in the second wild card position in the Eastern Conference on a tiebreaker. Detroit and New York both have 72 points, but Detroit has more regulation and overtime wins.

The Rittich standout performance put an end to the Islanders’ six-game winning streak.  Playing for his fifth NHL team, the Czech native blanked a team that was averaging five goals per game during their winning streak.

Detroit spent roughly 27 hours out of a playoff spot after being in one since Jan. 13.  The Islanders moved into the spot by percentage points Sunday night.  That doesn’t change the fact Detroit players desperately need to end their five-game losing streak tonight when they face the Sabres in Buffalo.

Detroit is a +106 moneyline underdog against the Sabres.

With only 18 games remaining, the Red Wings must rekindle an offense that has averaged 1.6 goals per game during their losing skid.

Big Help

The Red Wings also received other help Monday night because the Washington Capitals and New Jersey Devils both lost. The Capitals are only three points behind Detroit, while New Jersey is six back.

Just as important, the Red Wings are only two points behind the Tampa Bay Lightning who hold the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. Detroit has one game in hand on the Lightning.

Detroit’s next five games (at Buffalo, vs. Arizona, vs. Buffalo, at Pittsburgh and vs. Columbus) are against teams currently not in a playoff spot. Running the table would strengthen the Red Wings’ hope of qualifying for the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons.

The Red Wings also have an important contest against the Islanders at Little Caesars Arena on March. 21.