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Playoff race: Red Wings on the outside, looking in

Apr 18, 2013, 2:18 AM EDT

Wings Getty Images

It’s been said many times, but the Detroit Red Wings last missed the playoffs in 1990. That’s a remarkable run of competing for the Stanley Cup in the post-season and it could be coming to an end.

The Wings are, with five games remaining in their regular season schedule, now ninth in the Western Conference and in danger of missing the post-season after a 3-2 loss to the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night.

To sensationalize it, the Red Wings are on the outside, looking in.

“You’ve got to win your way in,” Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock told NHL.com.

“You can’t watch your way in. You’ve got to win your way in. We take a lot of pride in being a real competitive team. I think we’ve been competitive this year. We’re not at the level we’ve been in the past for sure, but we’ve competed hard.

“I thought we competed hard tonight, but we didn’t start on time and we made a couple mistakes.”

The Columbus Blue Jackets, with a 3-2 overtime win over the Anaheim Ducks also on Wednesday, moved past their Central Division rivals from Detroit and into that eighth and final playoff spot.

  1. canucks30 - Apr 18, 2013 at 2:33 AM

  2. trbowman - Apr 18, 2013 at 3:47 AM

    Is there anybody outside Detroit that doesn’t want Columbus in? Anyone?

    • thehighcountrybear - Apr 18, 2013 at 4:27 AM

      I’m not sure which is the greater of the phenomena, the resurgence of the Blue Jackets or the empty bandwagon taking-on passengers from teams the perennial dogsbodies to the mighty Red Wings…?

      While not begrudging Columbus, any success they have has to benefit the entire league as they begin to pay their own way for once: equalization payments notwithstanding, long have teams like Detroit filled empty buildings and in so doing, shored-up struggling bottom lines while the same losing teams beef-up through superior draft positions. Bite the hand that feeds you at your own peril…the season isn’t over yet!

      Insofar as anyone outside of Detroit lamenting a Wings’ miss, check out the stands in any arena anywhere, count the fans wearing the most iconic jersey in the game, then assess the breadth of support for Wings outside Detroit…

      As Babcock stated, teams that win get in: looking at the table, Wings still hold the upper hand with Columbus it would seem. More worrisome for the Wings are the Stars. The eighth seed may well be determined in Dallas on the twenty seventh…I like Wings’ chances!

      • east96st - Apr 18, 2013 at 9:24 AM

        Not going to argue the number of Wings fans, not going to argue the fact that the Wings have, indeed, filled arenas, not going to argue that the Wings are still in it, and not going to argue that the Jackets have NEVER been a draw in other arenas. All those facts are correct. But paying their own way? Columbus handed over all the casino revenue, that was supposed to benefit Columbus residents and the schools, to keep the Jackets. Columbus has paid a very high price indeed to boost the Jackets bottom line. It’s BFT that the Jackets started to perform like a PROFESSIONAL hockey team. Give us our few seconds of happiness, won’t you?

      • yustasayin - Apr 18, 2013 at 10:47 AM

        Great Post upper bruin! Like to read your silver tongue opinions but don’t always agree. It is a treat to read a post that isn’t filled with immature, homer and slang expressions.

        It is I think, time for the Wing’ed cycle to step back, reload and have a chance for that juicy draft pick that is awarded to the teams that have had their run.

      • polegojim - Apr 19, 2013 at 2:27 PM

        east96st – I agree – Columbus should enjoy the success… they are LONG overdue.

  3. jeffchadwick - Apr 18, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Teams that can’t beat the freaking Flames with plenty of rest don’t deserve to be in the playoffs. Teams that come back from a third period deficit to beat a good Ducks team on the road do deserve to be in the playoffs. End of story.

  4. hsnepsts - Apr 18, 2013 at 12:55 PM

    Mr Bear, for all your anti-Canucks comments, its interesting to see how many people want to turn this thread about a Calgary-Detroit game into a thread about the Canucks.

    You want to know why Canucks fans are despised? For one, because there are a lot of them. Check out any Canucks ‘road’ game up and down the coast – Vancouver fans fills the seats in Phoenix, San Jose, Anaheim, etc. No one ever complains about Phoenix fans for a reason.

    For the past 2 decades, the Canucks have (tried to) champion attractive, fast paced hockey. From Bure-Mogilny to Naslund-Bertuzzi to the Sedins. Ever called the Canucks a trap team? nope. People actually want to watch this team.

    Vancouver is the 20th largest metro area with an NHL team, and they have the 4th highest revenue. That’s because the product is good. The Canucks are relevant. You are living proof of that, Mr Bear, as you turn any possible thread into another platform to spread your take on reality.

    Yes, no cups. And that sucks. Other than your well-written trolling, that’s all you haters have left to cling to, so hold on tight.

  5. polegojim - Apr 19, 2013 at 2:26 PM

    hsnepsts – I don’t see any ‘anti-Canucks’ comments in HighCountry’s post on this thread???

    How his HC trolling about an article on the Red Wings… that has nothing to do with Canucks… but you introduced the Canucks here???

    Just saying… at least post your comments on an anti-Canucks thread.

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