Connect with us

Detroit Red Wings

Red Wings Set Their Alarm to Start On Time Thursday



Red Wings celebrate

One common thread of the Detroit Red Wings struggles of late has been the fact that their start time has been 30 minutes after game time.  The Red Wings have been first period no-shows.

The Detroit Red Wings were out-shot 20-5 Tuesday and fell behind 2-0 in the first period against the Columbus Blue Jackets. They were out-shot 14-5 and were down 3-1 in the first period Sunday against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Red Wings have had poor starts throughout their current 2-8 skid.

“I think we come to the rink with the expectation to win,” Detroit defenseman Moritz Seider said. “We are fired up but we just can’t translate it on the ice. We have a good atmosphere in the room before. Now we just gotta make sure we’re really dialed in.”

The Red Wings haven’t had much jump in the opening 20 minutes, and their focus has been off.  That’s not the way they were playing when they were 9-2-2 in January.  Detroit players know they need a higher first period performance level Thursday when they face the New York Islanders.

“It’s probably the biggest game of our season tomorrow and we definitely can’t fall asleep in the first 10 minutes,” Seider said.

Poor defensive coverage. Giving up breakaways. No offensive push.  Mental mistakes. Can’t get to the net. The Red Wings have been guilty of multiple first period sins.

Variety of Issues

“(The problems have) been different,” Lalonde said. “In Buffalo we started well but we gave up a power play goal. The Arizona start and last night’s start were very similar where everyone’s first shift was fine. We earn ourselves two power plays and lose a little momentum off our power play and it ends up in the back of our net. I just think simple, north, work off the forecheck, get pucks to the net, just a simple recipe to get us going.”

Lalonde said Detroit’s coaching staff  also needs to accept some responsibility.

“They’re obviously not responding from video and our meetings with some of these starts, so we’ll try to be a little bit different,”  Lalonde said. ” It’s an interesting time of year. It’s so emotional right now, the highs and lows. You talk about the narrative last night, you go from one narrative, if we lost, to now we’ve won two of three, we’re above the line. It’s amazing the emotional roller coaster, even within a game. We can beat down the same type of things we talked about. Maybe we have to change up the approach a little bit.”

After the comeback win against Columbus, Lalonde said one consideration is shortening his bench in the first period, like he would at the end of the game.

“We’re just kind of talking about who’s going, who’s not, who can you expect to go?” Lalonde said. “Maybe it’s one of those situations where we shorten it early. Very similar to shortening it late in the game to try to find that goal to tie it. Again, that’ll be on the staff and the group to be much more competitive to start.”

Trying something new makes sense, because what they are doing now hasn’t been working.