Detroit Red Wings Should Take Note From Los Angeles Kings

They say old dogs can’t learn new tricks. If the Wings want to make the most of this season, they’re going to have to.


For all intents and purposes, the Kings dominated Thursday night’s game. They fired 52 shots at Jimmy Howard, but were only capable of putting one past him. In the second period alone, they peppered Howard with 27 shots. If it weren’t for last minute goals in the first and third period, the Wings would have suffered a crushing loss.


After a stunning 2-1 last second win over the Kings, the Red Wings should pick a page from L.A.’s book.


On paper, the two teams as currently constructed look eerily similar. Both have elite forwards (Wings’ Zetterberg and Datsyuk; Kings’ Kopitar and Brown), shutdown defensemen (Wings’ Lidstrom, Kings’ Scuderi), up-and-coming goaltenders (Wings’ Howard, Kings’ Quick), strong goal-crease presence (Wings’ Holmstrom, Kings’ Smyth), and star defensemen in the making (Wings’ Ericsson, Kings’ Doughty).


With all those similarities, I don’t think anyone would have guessed the Kings would currently be in the playoffs and the Wings out. The difference in standing can be attributed to style of play.


As demonstrated in Thursday’s game, the Kings are willing to put pressure on a team from end to end. At any given point in the night, the Kings had at least two if not all three forwards in the Wings’ end. It led to constant Red Wing turnovers and sustained offensive pressure from L.A.


Once they gained the zone, the Kings used their point men to perfection. If the forwards got into trouble down low, the defensemen moved to open space and made themselves available for bail-out passes.


If Detroit were willing to adapt this style to at least two lines in a game, they could enjoy the same domination the Kings did Thursda...

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