from Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press,
As the Detroit Red Wings try to stop sliding down the standings, their focus is on two areas in particular.
"We have to be way more committed defensively and get a higher compete level," rookie Lucas Raymond said Monday. "We definitely have the capacity to do it, so I think it’s all up to ourselves."
The next test comes Tuesday when the Eastern Conference-leading Carolina Hurricanes are at Little Caesars Arena. The Wings (23-24-3) have managed to stay at or near .500 as games have intensified with the playoffs nearing, but that's been built on an improved offense, while the defense has sputtered.
"We haven’t been a good enough defensive team really all season," coach Jeff Blashill said. "It’s something that we continue to work on and continue to want to get better at. Some of that is confidence defensively. But it’s certainly something that we still need to get better at.
"I don’t think that’s been enough of our identity. I do think our identity at times this year has been an extraordinary high compete level, an extraordinary high sacrifice level, and I don’t think that’s been to the degree that’s it needs to be. Certainly not Saturday but probably not against Colorado, either."