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Blashill to HSJ on the Wings’ playoff outlier status: ‘This isn’t okay’

The Free Press's Helene St. James spoke with the Red Wings' players and coach after practice today, and coach Blashill was blunt about the Wings' status...

The past several weeks have seen the Wings beat some of the best teams in the NHL (Washington, Pittsburgh, Montreal, Chicago, Nashville) but also lose to the likes of Colorado and New Jersey. Their inconsistency is among the reasons the Wings are headed for their first absence from the playoffs in 26 seasons.

“First of all, we have to know this isn’t OK,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “And if you don’t want to be here again, you better make sure that we continue to get better, and we better make sure that our approach is the right way so that the culture maintains. There are organizations where they have lost culture. They have missed the playoffs, and they miss it 10 straight years. We don’t want to be in this position again. This isn’t OK. That is the approach we are taking every day.”

And Justin Abdelkader told St. James that there's more than pride on the line for the players as well:

“Guys are playing for jobs next year and spots on the roster,” forward Justin Abdelkader said after today's practice at Joe Louis Arena. “There are young guys coming up fighting for positions. There is constantly a battle going on there. We are doing what we can to succeed. We are not worried about where we are going to draft. We need to finish this season feeling a little better about ourselves.”

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About The Malik Report

The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.