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Wings not worried about current skid

by Bill Roose / Detroit Red Wings
DETROIT – Not only was Tuesday’s 5-1 loss the first win for Atlanta at Joe Louis Arena, it also snapped the Red Wings’ league-best streak of 261 consecutive regular-season home games without a loss by more than a three-goal margin. 

The loss on Tuesday stretched the Wings’ winless streak to three straight games that included a 6-5 shootout loss to Minnesota (Jan. 10) and a 3-2 defeat at Ottawa last Saturday.

“We went to Ottawa and got beat by a real good team,” Wings coach Mike Babcock said. “They capitalized on their power play. Prior to that, our specialty teams had played pretty good, and in the last two games we’ve given up five power play goals. That’s an issue.”

The last team to win a game in Detroit by at least four goals was the Chicago Blackhawks, who claimed a 6-1 victory on Nov. 3, 2000.

Ask if there was a trend or some parallels to the outcome of the last three games, Babcock said, “They’re all different, but in reality when you string a couple together they all add up, then you start to question what you do a little bit.”

From a historic aspect, Atlanta’s win might sting a little more.
Thrashers right wing Marian Hossa scored the first three goals of Tuesday’s game. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Hossa’s only the second NHL player ever to score the first three goals of a game against Detroit. The other player to do that was Boston’s Dutch Gainor on March 14, 1929, when the Detroit franchise was known by its original nickname, the Cougars.

Call it s mini-slump, but forward Henrik Zetterberg said the Wings will have this situation solved soon.
“Of course you don’t want to lose three straight,” Zetterberg said. “You can call it a little slump. We lost three in a row earlier in the season too and we bounced back from that. There’s nothing else that you have to do, but go out and play a good game tomorrow.”

The league-leading Wings (33-10-4) host the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday.

The Wings didn’t practice that long on Wednesday, and they won’t overload or sulk about the things that haven’t worked in the last week.

“Re-focus mentally,” Zetterberg said. “Just have a good practice today and come back here tomorrow with fresh minds and be ready to go.”.

NOTEBOOK: Right win Dallas Drake missed Wednesday's practice at Joe Louis Arena. He hasn't practiced since injurying his right knee in the third period of Saturday's game in Ottawa.

"It's still really sore, but it's made some good progress over the last few days," Drake said. "I was hoping to skate today, and maybe tomorrow, but it obviously wasn't ready."

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