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Is Detroit’s defense… Improving?

Jan 26, 2013, 11:06 AM EDT

Darroll Powe, Brendan Smith AP

Last night, the Detroit Red Wings earned their first victory of the year beating the Minnesota Wild 5-3.

While they still gave up three goals, is their defense actually getting better? Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News seems to think so although coach Mike Babcock wouldn’t come right out and say as much.

“We could us a few more guys back, and that would help us as well,” said coach Mike Babcock, referring to three defensemen, Jonathan Ericsson, Ian White and Carlo Colaiacovo, still out with injuries.

“As the game went on and we got better and the D got more comfortable, we were able to move the puck better,” Babcock said.

Improving the defense by being better with the puck offensively is nothing new to the Red Wings. Their “puck possession” style of play helps the team play defense by keeping their opponents from controlling play.  With both Niklas Kronwall and rookie Brendan Smith playing solidly in that fashion last night, maybe some Wings fans can come out off the ledge.

Then again, they’ve given up 13 goals in four games so there’s still a little bit more work to do.

  1. 0ffsides - Jan 26, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    A huge improvement from the defence displayed on opening night.

  2. hockinj25 - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:15 PM

    They’ve already played 9 defensemen in 4 games. Once the same lineup is able to play together consistently they will be even better.

  3. anonymouslyanonymouscommentor - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:26 PM

    Pretty sure that was their second win.

  4. darksidecowboy - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:29 PM

    Hate to see it, but Holland should make an offer for Subban before Philly does.

    • eastcoastwingette - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:55 PM


  5. eastcoastwingette - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:48 PM

    Wait, what? Fascinating as you love to focus on our problems, yet we managed to beat the Wild last night. With our slightly AHL team, by the way.
    Colaiacovo is, was, and will always be a band-aid defenseman (see: Huskins). Not a big loss. Maybe we can get him to give a few vowels to Frk, but that’s about it. Don’t get me started on Ericsson. Or Quincy. Going into this season it was well understood our forwards were going to have to make up for our D. Our defense is not improving. At all (though Lashoff has been a pleasant surprise). We’re just building some chemistry up front and have some good lines with Bertuzzi and Helm back in the fold.

    • steelcity4ever - Jan 27, 2013 at 3:02 PM

      You must not know too much about hockey. The D is definitely improving, Lashoff looks good which is surprising, Nik and Smith get better together every night, and getting Carlo and Ericson back will be a huge boost. Ericson has shown promise and he can throw the body and they’re both better than Quincey. Offense starts with defense (i.e the Brunner PP goal), it’s not just the forwards improving.

  6. docdisco - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:16 PM

    They looked 100 times better last night then they did in the home opener but we still have a ways to go. Lashoff has been a pleasant surprise but we definitely look like a team in desperate need of a #1 defenseman, I would just appreciate getting shots on goal more consistently. That being said its still early and we are still fighting through injuries so I’m not freaking out quite yet.

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