Detroit Red Wings Looking To Extend Playoff Streak
The Detroit Red Wings come into the 2014-15 season looking to, yet again, extend their playoff streak. Here’s the question, though. Can it be done this time?
Of course, if they were still in the Western Conference the way they are right now, the answer would be a definitive “no”. The West, as we know, is just too damn good as of now. Hell, even now in the East last season, they had to fight their way to a Wild Card spot to get in.
Two years into former Captain Niklas Lidstrom’s retirement, the Red Wings know well by now how to cope with the loss of one of the best defensemen of all time. Forward Henrik Zetterberg was chosen to fill the leadership void, and so far he’s doing really well. While the group’s seen a few familiar faces leave the franchise, they’ve also seen new faces from signings and call-ups. One such example is former Ottawa Senators Captain Daniel Alfredsson, who unfortunately still has not made a decision on his future with the Wings.
Aside from all the veteran presences, there are the young guns of the franchise like Tomas Tatar and Gustav Nyquist. Both of them are really talented, both have really soft hands and, of course, a knack for scoring goals. If the Red Wings are going to keep their playoff streak intact, they need those guys to step up to the plate and have an even better season than in 2013-14.
Apart from all the offensive firepower they have, defense is Detroit’s weakness. They need their defensemen to step their game up. After all, both Jimmy Howard and Jonas Gustafsson can’t keep guarding the 6 x 4 cage alone.
Overall, given that Pavel Datsyuk doesn’t get injured for the whole season or he only gets injured for a minimal number of games and the young guns activate the red light at the other end very often, Detroit’s still got a chance at making the playoffs. However, should their offense lack and their D continue to fall apart with their poor net minders getting lit up, they could miss the postseason for the first time in… oh, I don’t know… 24 years?