The Detroit Red Wings head into their Thursday road clash against the Calgary Flames riding a four-game winning streak.
A victory over the Flames would set a season-high mark for Detroit, which is looking to pull closer to an Eastern Conference playoff spot.
The Red Wings head to Calgary following a 5-4 shootout win over the host Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday. Detroit surrendered a 4-2, third-period lead but pulled off a victory thanks to Pius Suter’s goal in the fifth round of the shootout.
“Just winning on the road is difficult, let alone against a team like that with the type of offense they have,” Detroit coach Derek Lalonde said. “There are moments when they put you on your heels, and it’s important for the next shift or the next guy to step up. I thought … we managed the game fairly well.”
Detroit’s winning streak started with a 2-1 home decision against the Flames on Feb. 9.
Leading the way has been Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin, with six goals in a four-game run and nine points in his past five outings. However, helping turn Detroit’s season has been the play of so many others, among them second-year defenseman Moritz Seider, who has six points in a five-game point streak, and forward Robby Fabbri, who has two goals and six points in three games.
The confidence gained from providing offensive punch and winning is easy to see. It helped the Red Wings stem the tide in Edmonton.
“We’ve had a few of these games, being up in the third and then giving up the lead and not coming away with a win,” Fabbri said. “It’s not the way we drew it, but we found a way to win.”
Forward Jakub Vrana, who was summoned from a conditioning stint with AHL Grand Rapids, did not play in Edmonton. Vrana, who entered the league’s player assistance program in October, collected 11 points in 17 AHL game after returning to the organization.
The Flames, who hold the second Western Conference wild-card spot, are looking to regroup after ending a road trip with a 4-3 overtime loss to the Ottawa Senators on Monday.
Calgary, which went 2-1-2 on the trip, blew a 3-1 lead in the final three minutes of regulation at Ottawa. But that’s not the only game the Flames are using for motivation. The 2-1 loss in Detroit remains fresh on their minds.
“There are definitely areas we can be better against Detroit,” defenseman Noah Hanifin said. “We only had one goal, and I think we want to get the score up a little bit more and create more offense.”
There are Calgary players who must step up their game, but a couple are producing lately. Dillon Dube logged three goals and three assists in the past two games, and Tyler Toffoli collected five goals and three assists in the past five contests.
The issue has been between the pipes, with No. 1 goalie Jacob Markstrom in the crosshairs. Markstrom has not won consecutive starts since before Christmas, and he has only two wins in 10 games in 2023.
Coach Darryl Sutter would not tip his hand whether Markstrom or Dan Vladar would start in net against the Red Wings.
“I’m not getting into the individual stuff. That’s for you to go talk to the players,” Sutter said. “You want me to transfer something through the media. That’s not the way it works with me.”
–Field Level Media