The Wings are 12 games in and are coming off three wins in four days to put them at 7-4-1 for 15 points. They currently sit 5th in the Western Conference and 2nd in the Central Division. Catching the Blackhawks is looking to be a challenge, but Detroit could certainly do themselves favors by winning.
With that, we're going to take a look at the roster from an individual standpoint on a good/bad/neutral perspective and see what kind of trends are working out. We'll be doing this on a week-by-week basis. Everybody will get a good/bad/neutral rating based on what they've done this past week and what we can expect from them for the coming week.
They'll also be ranked in order of strongest-to-weakest in their category.
Darren Helm (Back)
- Henrik Zetterberg - Z registered points in all four games this week (six assists) and continues to set the pace. His 18 points has him among the league-leaders. He nearly doubled his PK time on ice for the season and played exceptionally well.
- Pavel Datsyuk - The gap in points between Zetterberg and Datsyuk widened this week, but Pavel has been very good on both sides of the puck. 3 points in 4 games this week with lesser linemates is still good.
- Damien Brunner - Brunner had two goals and an assist and is tied with Pavel Datsyuk for CSSI-adjusted plus/minus. His adjustment to the NHL game has continued at a good pace. I've really liked a number of clever passes in the neutral zone to move the puck forward.
- Cory Emmerton - Emmerton's two points against St. Louis is a good output for four games and his performance against other fourth lines was much better.
- Drew Miller - Two assists were nice. Even nicer was the fact that Miller wasn't on the ice for a power play goal against in more than 13 minutes of PK time.
- Tomas Tatar - Tatar has performed well on Detroit's third line in the last week. While I'd like to see more than one assist, the 8 SOG he's fired averaging just over 12 minutes per game is very good to see.
- Daniel Cleary - Dan Cleary got a goal against St. Louis to apparently get off the Schneid and then spent the last two Wings games showing he absolutely does not belong in the top six. Eight penalty minutes this week is ridiculous.
- Todd Bertuzzi - Bert only played the first two games and was apparently injured against St. Louis. He was ineffective on Thursday and bad on Tuesday. Overall that's a bad week for Bert.
- Valtteri Filppula - Filppula got only one goal this week, and disappeared at times, but he's shooting more and playing defensively well. He's going to need to produce more this week though.
- Johan Franzen - Franzen was just behind Filppula here. He had the same number of points, but the penalties and only 4 shots on goal needs improvement.
- Jordin Tootoo - He had a decent week from the fourth line. The only penalty minutes he put up were in a fight against Calgary's Begin. He also got an assist this week. I expect a little more out of him.
- Justin Abdelkader - Abdelkader only got one point in the lower line pointsplosion against St. Louis on Thursday and has done decently, but he also got pulled off the PK recently.
- Joakim Andersson - I liked his hustle, but he didn't provide much over the weekend. He didn't do enough to convince me that he should be in the lineup over any number of other forwards.
- Jan Mursak - Injured in the first period of the first game, it's unfortunate to see this happen to him.
- Darren Helm - Helm didn't get into a game this week.
- Mikael Samuelsson - Sammy skated in practice more, but still hasn't played.
- Patrick Eaves - Eaves sat all week for an undisclosed reason. On its face that's bad, but I'm not sure I can confidently call him a "healthy" scratch.
- Jonathan Ericsson - Riggy's game-winner against the Kings was kind of funny because it somewhat covered up the fact that the LA game might have been his least-convincing performance of the week. Overall, he's played big minutes and still looks like he gets it.
- Ian White - Since his return last Tuesday, White has been quietly very impressive. He's doing well to limit chances against the Wings and had an assist Sunday. He's been a solid presence on Detroit's 2nd pairing.
- Niklas Kronwall - Kronner has had a few defensive miscues, but overall he's been solid defensively and has put up 3 points in the last 4 games. He doesn't look like he's trying to do too much.
- Brian Lashoff - Big minutes for the youngster has yielded overall positive results. He's just a stop above neutral for a mixture of good-and-bad play, but I'm happy he's in the lineup.
- Kent Huskins - The only game he got into this week was the Calgary loss and he was a non-factor in a bad game. It's not his fault he didn't get a chance to overcome that performance and he'll have to wait for another chance to fight for a roster spot, but for this one week, life's unfair for Kent Huskins.
- Jakub Kindl - He's played well enough to stay in the lineup and had a really good decision which led to a goal against the Blues, but he's also made a handful of mistakes that have required a bail-out. I would keep him in the lineup for the time being because of his upside.
- Kyle Quincey - He didn't stand out as bad this week, but he didn't play well enough to earn a good rating. I'd like to see him earn back the ice time that Babcock took away from him for the last two games.
- Brendan Smith - Injured against Columbus, Smith didn't play any games this week.
- Carlo Colaiacovo - Still on injured reserve.
- Jimmy Howard - Not a great performance in Calgary, but two good games over the weekend counter-balance that well. I'm as confident as ever in Detroit's starter.
- Petr Mrazek - One very good performance against St. Louis and he's the goalie of the future. I was really impressed by him on Thursday.
- Brian Elliott - hahaha
- Jonas Gustavsson - Get well soon, Monster Groin.
3 out of 4 wins will do good things to your roster ratings, even if two of those wins were butt-clenchingly close. It's nice to have a decent percentage of forwards in the "good" category, but gets a little disconcerting that it's only half of the top six forwards and that only one game has featured scoring from the Wings' bottom six. The defensemen are doing a better job holding their own in the zone, but still aren't driving transition quite as well as I'd like to see.
I'd much rather hand out less-deserved Good ratings for the goaltenders.
As a bit of a bonus, here are the lifetime career stats of the Red Wings against the three teams the Wings will play in the next seven days.
|Vs. St. Louis||Vs. Anaheim||Vs. Minnesota|
(Note: Ian White's only career penalty against Minnesota was a fight? Yep... When he was with the Maple Leafs, he fought Cal Clutterbuck in a game the Leafs lost 6-1. Three of his four career fights came in that season. TRUCULENCE!)