Jan 19, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Blues right wing Chris Stewart (25) is congratulated after scoring his second goal of the game against the Detroit Red Wings during the third period at the Scottrade Center. The Blues defeated the Red Wings 6-0. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

No Wings Season Opener Is Not A Sign Of Things To Come

Jan 19, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Blues right wing Ryan Reaves (75) checks Detroit Red Wings defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo (28) during the third period at the Scottrade Center. The Blues defeated the Red Wings 6-0. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

A good old-fashioned St. Louis Blues beat down had many Wings fans ready to write off the season the moment they powered off their television sets last night.  Yes, an argument could be made that Detroit’s special teams were in more disarray than Lance Armstrong’s personal life.

Actually, a sit down apology session featuring Kyle Quincey and Oprah wouldn’t be a bad idea after his comedic performance vs. the Blues.  If Ken Holland had a do-over I’m not sure he’d trade a 7th round draft pick for this calamity.  Maybe a sack of marbles and some stick tape, but that’s about it.

If you somehow managed to stick it out until the 3rd period (like I did), you probably realized by about the mid-way point of the 2nd period that this was one of those special games that required a lot of endurance and a ton of beer.  As a longtime Buffalo Bills fan I have this routine down to a science.

But, the articles written about this game… my God if they are any indication of the reality of the Wings situation then they might as well cancel their flight to Columbus tomorrow and head for summer vacation right now.

Almost every article about last night’s game appears to have been written by some borderline suicidal sports journalist who broke out their laptop only after popping a couple Percosets, downing a quart of Wild Turkey, and loading a handgun.

So, hopefully we’ve all had a good night’s sleep and can look back at the game a little more rationally.  We need to take a deep breath and ask ourselves what we really expected from last night’s game?

This is a team that hasn’t played a game since last April, lost 4 critical pieces to their lineup (Lidstrom, Stuart, Holmstrom, and Hudler) during the off-season, and had 5 brand new players on the ice last night.

Not to mention the fact they were on the road facing a team that almost won the President’s Trophy last season.

Not an easy task folks.

It’s going to take a little bit of time to figure things out here.  But, the Wings will work it out.  They always do.

Fortunately, in Detroit we are lucky enough to have the best coach in the NHL in Mike Babcock, who despite  some key departures still has a lot of quality talent to work with.

Jan 19, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; Detroit Red Wings center Henrik Zetterberg (40) gets pressured by St. Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo (27) and Blues right wing T.J. Oshie (74) during the third period at the Scottrade Center. The Blues defeated the Red Wings 6-0. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

The most important thing Red Wings fans need to do is adjust their expectations.  This is not a team that is going to challenge for the Western Conference title.  Nevertheless, the Wings will get things turned round enough to make the playoffs.

And, if you need to take solace in something remember that the eventual 1995 Stanley Cup Champion New Jersey Devils went winless in their first 4 games of their lockout-shortened regular season.  However, unlike the ’95 Devils this is not a Stanley Cup Champion caliber team.

This is a team that is going to have to scratch and claw to fight their way into one of the last available playoff positions.

Are the Wings going to lose every game 6-0? No.

But, it’s not going to be pretty.

So you better get used to it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tags: Detroit Red Wings

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