Red Wings seek offensive boost against Canucks
Detroit's offense went missing in Canada. Now back home, the Red Wings will try to reboot their attack.
The Red Wings generated just one goal in each of their three contests across the border last week and carry a four-game losing streak into Tuesday's game against visiting Vancouver. Detroit will play four of its remaining five October games at Little Caesars Arena.
"They're keying in on a couple of us, but it has to be all 12 forwards," Dylan Larkin, the center on Detroit's top line, told the Detroit Free Press. "We have to find ways to get in front of the goalie's eyes and get the puck and score simple goals. We haven't had that the past two games. It is frustrating. Three goals in three games, that's not fun. That's not going to win you games."
Coach Jeff Blashill tried numerous line combinations during the trip but nothing seemed to work. The only goal scored on the last leg of the journey, a 2-1 loss to Edmonton on Friday, was tallied by defenseman Mike Green.
Blashill reunited his opening-night line of Larkin, Tyler Bertuzzi and Anthony Mantha against the Oilers but nothing changed.
"It's hard to score tons of points night in and night out," Blashill said. "It's hard to be that kind of line that has to do that, but I'd also say that's what they want. They have to find a way to dig in and be a little bit better. They know they're going to get the other team's best D, they know they'll get tough matchups. If you want to be an elite line, you have to be so good every night."
One positive development in the last game was a better defensive effort. The Wings gave up five goals apiece in their previous three games.
"We took a step in the right direction with the way we dug in," Blashill said. "Do we need more offense? Yeah. Are certain guys going to score more? Yes they are. Let's make sure we keep taking steps forward here."
Detroit will try to avenge a 5-1 loss to the Canucks on Oct. 15. Larkin scored the lone Wings' goal. J.T. Miller scored two goals for Vancouver, while Alexander Edler had a goal and his first two assists of the season.
The Canucks split a couple of hotly contested games on the East Coast over the weekend. They lost 1-0 to New Jersey, then edged the New York Rangers 3-2 on Sunday.
Vancouver scored all of its goals in the opening period at New York and Jacob Markstrom preserved the lead by making 38 saves, including 16 in the final period.
Markstrom hadn't played in more than a week, having just returned from Sweden after attending to personal matters.
"He's had a tough week," Canucks coach Travis Green said. "To see how he played (Sunday), it's good for him, it's good for our team. That's a moment. I know he hasn't talked about his past week, but he's had a hard week. You feel for a guy like that that competes the way he does and loves to win and is a real warrior for our team."
Bo Horvat scored his 100th career goal on Sunday.
"I just think we were doing a lot of good things," Horvat told NHL.com.
--Field Level Media
Updated October 21, 2019