The Detroit Red Wings are starting to look like the Red Wings gain. Since opening with a 6-0 loss at St. Louis, they have gone 3-1-1 in their last five games.
“We weren't very competitive,” Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said of that season opener. “Now we have an opportunity to evaluate ourselves six games later and see where we're at.”
The Red Wings are 2-0-1 in their last three games, with 10 goals scored. They have killed 14 of their last 16 penalties. Back in Game 1, the allowed four power-play goals.
Their home game tonight against the Blues will provide a barometer of their progress.
“I think we're doing the right things, it's starting to come together,” winger Todd Bertuzzi told the Detroit Free Press. “St. Louis is playing well -- they're big, they're strong, they're tough. We're going to have to match that.”
Forward Henrik Zetterberg is expected to play in this game after missing Thursday's practice with flu-like symptoms. But he Red Wings are still shorthanded. Key defenseman Ian White (leg gash) isn’t expected back until next week.
“I was actually hoping to play today because I was skating for a few days now, felt fine,'' White told MLive.com. “But then the doctor explained if you fall and that leg jack-knifes it'll blow everything up in there. I'm aiming for Tuesday, we'll see. It gets a little bit better every day and hopefully I'll be back then.”
Forwards Darren Helm (back), Mikael Samuelsson (groin) and Jan Mursak (collarbone) are out for longer periods of time, as is defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo (shoulder).