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Detroit handles decimated Penguins 4-1

Dec 13, 2011, 10:24 PM EDT

Detroit Red Wings v Pittsburgh Penguins Getty Images

Those Detroit Red Wings aren’t very sympathetic are they? Instead of taking it easy on the injury-ravaged Pittsburgh Penguins, Detroit dismissed them 4-1 after Evgeni Malkin made it 1-0.

The Penguins lost two of three games in the latest Crosby-less run, but to be fair to Pittsburgh, those defeats came against two of the hottest teams in the NHL in Detroit and the Philadelphia Flyers. It’s one thing to tread water against weak and average teams, but let’s face it: the Red Wings had an excellent chance of beating Pittsburgh even if Crosby was in the lineup.

Detroit have outscored their opponents 16-4 in their current three-game winning streak and triumphed in nine of their last 12 games. So yeah, they remain ridiculously good.

Under normal circumstances, the lack of attention for such a run would lead me to say that people are “sleeping” on Detroit. Instead, I think it’s just a collective shoulder shrug from the hockey world. The Red Wings have been so dominant for so long that it’s only really remarkable when they aren’t pulverizing people.

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  1. Stiller43 - Dec 13, 2011 at 10:38 PM

    It was 2-1 with 5 min left – play was even – pens were without croz, letang, michalek, etc.

    Idk if dismantled is an appropriate word for it.

    • James O'Brien - Dec 13, 2011 at 10:58 PM

      You make a good point, so I decided to change the headline.

      • cmutimmah - Dec 14, 2011 at 8:45 AM

        Only story here is that Pavel Datsyuk is an amazing player… his assist and backhander goal were both “wow” plays. Also, good to see Dan Cleary has a pulse.

        Aside from that, it wasn’t a big game by any means. Pitt has a lot of injuries (including on of the game’s best forwards) and it shouldn’t be a surprise at all that a healthy Wings team won this game.

        The article is a bit of over excitement in both team’s directions.

  2. polegojim - Dec 13, 2011 at 10:56 PM

    @stiller43 – Funny when the Pens WIN without Crosby and others – Pitt fans proclaim… ‘The Pens are great even with out Sid’. When the Pens LOSE, the excuses abound.

    Does Detroit win only when their best players are on the ice…NO! When the Wings lose without their power players, there are no apologies, no excuses.

    Great job RED WINGS! Now, stay healthy down the stretch!

  3. pens919209 - Dec 13, 2011 at 11:14 PM

    The Penguins played Detroit on fairly even terms for most of the game, but that third goal really sunk them. Give the Wings credit, their top players came through with some nice plays while the Pens’ top players didn’t. But if this were a series, I’d be excited for game 2 – there was some well-played hockey going on tonight.

  4. Stiller43 - Dec 13, 2011 at 11:16 PM

    Polegojim,

    Im not offering an excuse for the loss. Bottom line, the pens didnt do what they needed to do.

    I was simply curious of the “wings dismantle pens” headline (which has since been changed) due to the fact it was a 1 goal game with 5 min left and malkin was about 5 total inches away from two other goals in that game.

    • polegojim - Dec 14, 2011 at 3:16 PM

      Fair enough. The Pens will need to do what the Wings have done, find some role players to plug the holes.

  5. danphipps01 - Dec 13, 2011 at 11:42 PM

    Yeah, that’s pretty much how people approach the Wings these days – remember earlier this season when they were hot and cold in short bursts for most of a month? People talked more about them then than now, when they’re winning. Winning’s expected. Even though they’re like forty million years old. I keep waiting for the hammer to drop on account of their sheer age, but it ain’t comin’.

    • cmutimmah - Dec 14, 2011 at 9:05 AM

      Losing Draper, Maltby, Chelios, Rafalski, Osgood, and Modano in a 15 month period will start getting you younger in a hurry.

      Yes, the wings are an older team. But they seem to be every year and every year they make the playoffs… most years they win at least 2 series…

      http://www.quanthockey.com/TS/TS_AverageAge.php
      Check the graph for average age in the playoffs vs regular season. There’s usually a 2 year uptick in average age in the playoffs…

      Next year they’ll get younger with Holmstrom, Bertuzzi, Conklin, and Lidstrom coming off the books. This team is going to look a lot different, but aside from Lidstrom they aren’t losing anything they can’t recover from… and they will have plenty of cap room to sign a Lidstrom ‘replacement’ (there’s no replacing him).

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