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Babcock disappointed in Wings' effort

Ericsson sent to Detroit area hospital with what team is calling an upper-body injury

Monday, 12.23.2013 / 10:45 PM ET / News
By Bill Roose  - Managing Editor |
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Babcock disappointed in Wings\' effort

Red Wings defenseman Brendan Smith tries to defend against Islanders' Casey Cizikas in the first period Monday. The Islanders' center gave the visitors a 3-0 lead in the first period with his fourth goal of the season. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings)

DETROIT – Monday’s brownout in downtown Detroit grew increasingly worse for the Red Wings as the day went on.

So disappointed with his team’s lackluster performance against the New York Islanders, coach Mike Babcock took just one question in his post-game news conference.

“We’ve had a hard time getting traction,” Babcock said. “We had a number of injuries, but began to battle our way back to get some traction and I thought our intensity in the first period wasn’t good enough. They scored on their shots and I don’t think we did much. They didn’t do much either, but they scored.”

The Islanders scored three goals on their first seven shots of the game. It was all the scoring the Isles needed in defeating the Red Wings, 3-0, at Joe Louis Arena.

“The bottom line is we played catch-up all night long,” Babcock continued. “I thought we made it easy on their team. We never got in on their D, we weren’t physical like we have been, or heavy in the offensive zone. We had a push in the third period when we hit a couple of posts, but reality is, catch-up hockey is losing hockey, we say that all the time. You have to start on time, do things well. You have to be here the same amount of time to do it right as to do it like we did so you have to be disappointed in yourself for sure. As a coach, who’s supposed to be involved in the preparation process, we dropped the ball and so did the players. This wasn’t a good enough effort. When you’re getting booed off the ice after the first period, in your own building, the last day before Christmas, to me that’s a sad state of affairs.

“We’ll have three days to think about it obviously. Merry Christmas to everyone. Enjoy your families. We’ll get better at it and we’re going to be better than this because this wasn’t good enough.”

Besides the loss, which gives the Red Wings an unacceptable 6-10-6 record on home ice, they might have lost defenseman Jonathan Ericsson for the second time this season with what appeared to be an injury to his left side. He suffered a separated left shoulder in Phoenix on Oct. 19 and missed 10 games.

“Ericsson has been taken to the hospital with an upper-body injury,” Babcock said in his opening post-game remarks to the media. “We’ll have more detail tomorrow or the next day.”

The Wings received a dose of bad news prior to Monday’s game, as well, when goalie Jonas Gustavsson, who was originally to start the game, was a late scratch with a sore groin, general manager Ken Holland said.

Rookie goalie Petr Mrazek got the starting assignment, his third of the season with the Wings. He made 16 stops, including all 12 in the final 40 minutes.

“We didn’t really give him much help,” defenseman Niklas Kronwall said. “What’s he going to do? He came up with some big saves for us. We didn’t give him a chance.”

New York added to the Wings’ woes by dropping three even-strength goals on the home team in less than a six-minute span in the first period. The Islanders took control of the game on goals by wingers Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner and center Casey Cizikas.

The Red Wings’ best chance came in the second period on Luke Glendening’s wrist shot from the right circle. But Isles goalie Evgeni Nabokov made the stop, squeezing the puck between his body and left arm.

“I thought I was pretty close,” Glendening said. “I saw him look behind him and fall back, but that’s about as close as I’ve gotten so far. Hopefully one will go in sooner than later.”

Follow Bill Roose on Twitter | @Bill_Roose




1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54


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T. Tatar 82 29 27 6 56
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J. Abdelkader 71 23 21 3 44
N. Kronwall 80 9 35 -4 44
R. Sheahan 79 13 23 -3 36
D. Helm 75 15 18 7 33
D. DeKeyser 80 2 29 11 31
S. Weiss 52 9 16 -2 25
J. Howard 23 13 11 .910 2.44
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