Nov 12, 2011, 10:20 PM EST
After playing some great hockey in mainstream obscurity, the Dallas Stars went into Friday’s conference clash as the hottest team in the Western Conference. The Stars lost that game against the Pittsburgh Penguins and dropped another to Detroit tonight, which might crown the Red Wings as the hot team du jour in the West.
In the simplest terms possible, it seems almost undeniable; as of this writing, the Red Wings have won four games in a row while no other West team has a streak of more than two victories. They’ve also been beating the tar out of their opponents in the process. In the last four games, Detroit out-scored their opponents 18-4 and Jimmy Howard earned two shutouts.
A simple reason why the hot streak might go cold
My bet is that some columnist somewhere will critique the Red Wings’ collective age when looking at their interestingly hot-and-cold season. (Detroit won five in a row, lost six consecutive games and now they’re on their four-game streak.)
A mere look at their schedule should provide an adequate explanation – and maybe a glimpse of their immediate future. After playing six straight games at Joe Louis Arena, the Red Wings will begin a four-game road trip on Tuesday that includes a game against the St. Louis Blues and then a trio of games against California teams.
With that schedule in mind, you shouldn’t be too be surprised to see a panicked column or two about the Red Wings in the next week or so.
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head 111
- Report: Dion Phaneuf will face hearing for hit on Kevan Miller 94
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ 105
- Lecavalier out 3-4 weeks with non-displaced fracture in back 8
- Islanders players hold closed-door meeting after ninth straight loss 14
- Penguins’ Neal has phone hearing for knee on Bruins’ Marchand 89
- Shawn Thornton confirms hearing with NHL Department of Player Safety (Updated) 87
- Video: Penguins’ Neal knees Bruins’ Marchand 69
- Penguins announce Brooks Orpik ‘alert and conscious’ (Updated) 47
- Shawn Thornton: ‘People could probably criticize that I’m a little too honorable’ 78
- Video: Penguins’ Orpik stretchered off ice; Bruins’ Thornton given match penalty (180)
- Pens put Orpik on IR (126)
- Neal suspended five games for kneeing Marchand in the head (124)
- Bruins coach admits Thornton crossed the line, slams Pens for not being ‘truthful’ (106)
- Report: Dion Phaneuf will face hearing for hit on Kevan Miller (95)