Detroit Red Wings
Clear Bag Policy Follow @DetroitRedWings on Twitter! Follow the Red Wings on Facebook! Follow @DetroitRedWings on Instagram! Follow OfficialDRW on Snapchat! Get Red Wings Email Updates Get Red Wings Text Updates Get the Detroit Red Wings Official Mobile App
 

 
  • PRINT
  • RSS

Canucks expect physical Wings

Wednesday, 02.1.2012 / 9:17 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - Managing Editor | DetroitRedWings.com
X
Share with your Friends


Canucks expect physical Wings
VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Even though the Red Wings come to town sporting a power-play that hasn’t produced a goal on the road in nearly four weeks, Canucks coach Alain Vigneault knows the Wings will be a handful Thursday night at Rogers Arena.

“I’d like to take sort of a page out of Detroit’s book tomorrow,” Vigneault said Wednesday. “I feel they’re the best team in the league as far as net-presence, always having somebody always there, somebody square the puck, making life real hard on the other team’s goaltender.”

The Wings do cause considerable problems for opposing goaltenders by manning the front of the crease with big bodies like Tomas Holmstrom, Johan Franzen, Todd Bertuzzi and Danny Cleary.

And the Wings will have Holmstrom back in the lineup against the Canucks. The veteran power forward missed Tuesday’s 3-1 win at Calgary with some inflammation in his knees.
 
Typicall the Wings are able to create a lot of success with their net-front presence on the power play with their big men parked in front of the crease. Unfortunately, the power play has been reeling on the road since mid-December when they have gone on a 1-for-33 stretch going back to their first western Canada trip. 

Regardless, Vigneault believes the Wings’ net-front is a recipe that he would like his Canucks to duplicate.

“That’s an area where we can improve on,” he said. “We need to screen the goal more. We’re tipping pucks and letting the goalies see the pucks most of the time, it’s a pretty easy save for the goaltender. Detroit are so good at that and they have so many big bodies that like to do that and go to that tough area.

“So hopefully we’ll take a page out of their book tomorrow night because their goaltender’s been playing real well this year.”

Now, as for the perceived bad blood between the top two teams in the Western Conference – remember the Niklas Kronwall open-ice hit on Canucks center Ryan Kesler the last time these two teams met? – the two guys caught in the middle of the media storm said Wednesday that the previous incident is in the past.

However, Kronwall offers no apologies for playing hard and playing physical, which has been his trademark since joining the league.

“I'm sure there are people who feel different ways, everyone's entitled to their opinion,” he said. “But to me I didn't think I left my feet and I thought the puck was right there. But I'm sure there are people that see it the other way around.

“Any team that goes all the way has to play physical and wear the other team out. I don't think you can skill around anybody nowadays because all the teams are really good and all have skill. It comes down to hard work and a lot of times being physical. We've shown in the past we have that edge and we’ve got to keep doing it.”

While the Wings aren’t widely considered a very physical team – not at least in Kronwall’s brand of physical – Vigneault measures Detroit’s physicality differently.

“Whether you call physical taking the man when the opportunity is there or protecting the puck,” he said. “Look at the size of some of those forwards when they have the puck down low or you're battling along the wall or in a confined area with them, to get the puck away is a real challenge.

“They like to hang onto it, but if they feel the other team's got good gap or good back pressure they're going to make the high-percentage plays. They're going to chip it in, try to get it back, put it in an area where they got a chance to battle for it. And because of their speed, their skill, their size, that's why they're one of the best teams, if not the best right now.”

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @RooseBill



SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 50 37 9 4 163 112 78
2 FLA 51 31 15 5 141 112 67
3 NYR 52 29 18 5 148 134 63
4 TBL 51 29 18 4 137 118 62
5 BOS 51 27 18 6 149 136 60
6 DET 52 26 18 8 130 131 60
7 NJD 53 26 20 7 119 120 59
8 NYI 50 26 18 6 135 126 58
9 PIT 50 25 18 7 129 128 57
10 CAR 53 24 21 8 129 141 56
11 PHI 50 23 18 9 119 130 55
12 MTL 53 25 24 4 142 142 54
13 OTT 52 23 23 6 142 164 52
14 TOR 50 19 22 9 116 134 47
15 BUF 52 21 26 5 119 137 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 51 18 19 25 37
H. Zetterberg 52 9 25 2 34
T. Tatar 51 15 17 -2 32
G. Nyquist 52 14 15 -2 29
J. Abdelkader 52 14 12 -4 26
P. Datsyuk 37 6 20 11 26
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 38 5 10 6 15
D. DeKeyser 48 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 19 10 4 .932 2.03
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89