DetroitRedWings.com’s Brett McWethy filed a morning skate report based upon the remarks of Troy Stecher and coach Jeff Blashill ahead of tonight and tomorrow’s games opposite the Florida Panthers:
“Obviously, anytime you’re on a losing streak, guys are upset and pissed off,” Stecher said. “We have an opportunity. We’re at home now, we’ve got to take pride in playing at home. This is a good opportunity to change the page.”
“We didn’t get the results we wanted (on the road trip), but I think it was definitely a good learning curve for our group early in the season,” said Stecher. “Understanding that we’ve got to play a certain way if we want to have success. When you get away from that, obviously you’re going to get exposed, especially at this level.”
Florida is off to a 3-0-1 start after having the beginning of its season delayed due to the Dallas Stars’ COVID-19 outbreak. The Panthers have scored four or more goals in three games, and saw both of its contests at Columbus extended to a shootout.
Five Panthers have tallied at least four points in the early going, led by centerman Carter Verhaeghe’s six points on four goals and a pair of assists. Forward Patric Hornqvist has chipped in with four goals, while winger Anthony Duclair has collected five assists. Sergei Bobrovsky and Chris Driedger have split time in net, with Driedger boasting a 1.92 goals-against-average that currently ranks ninth among NHL goalies.
“They’re a team that forechecks well, they get locks of pucks to the slot area,” Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. “Verhaeghe’s had a good start there, playing with (Aleksander) Barkov. They’ve been in some close games, found ways to get points or win them. I think that’s what the league is. Every night you have opportunities – even if the score doesn’t end up close – to make a play to either win or lose. They’ve found a way to be on the right side.”
Continued; as McWethy notes, Florida has won 6 straight games vs. Detroit…