In Red Wings Land
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Amid a losing streak, the Detroit Red Wings are bearing down and fighting.
They take on the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday on a 0-8-1 streak, winless on a West Coast trip that began in San Jose and segued to back-to-back stops at Los Angeles and Anaheim. Friday’s 4-2 loss to the Ducks bruised: Luke Witkowski had a band-aid on his nose where he’d been cut. He was one of three Wings to fight as the team sought an end to so much losing.
“The effort was there. I know we keep saying that but this group is close and those games bring us together a bit more,” Witkowski said. “I think we’re all just really super frustrated.”
So are we, Luke. So are we.
Around the NHL
The Winnipeg Jets can thank their own St. Patrik for their success this season and potentially for years to come.
Patrik Laine was the consolation prize in the 2016 NHL draft behind generational talent Auston Matthews. But he has been a cause for celebration in Winnipeg as a franchise-changing superstar at age 19.
I’ve liked Laine since he came into the league. After watching him in the beginning, I’m not surprised at all to see him develop into a lethal goal scorer. Certain players just have that extra something. Even though other players are amazing at both defense and offense, Pavel Datsyuk just had that extra something that allowed him to be a step above at both ends.
For Patrick Laine, it’s his release. There’s only a handful of players I’ve ever seen in my decades of watching NHL hockey who are at the same level as he is in that regard. The combination of quickness of release, power, and accuracy are insane.