from Kevin Allen of Detroit Hockey Now,
One undeniable truth about the NHL is that as the season progresses games become increasingly more intense. Physical play becomes a more important factor.
“One of the advantages we had early in the year,” Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said, “is that we played games like they were playoff games.”
Rookies Moritz Seider and Lucas Raymond brought youthful exuberance and talent. Dylan Larkin and Tyler Bertuzzi had a renewed vigor created by their recovery from last season’s injuries. Confidence seemed high. Players were lifted by the team’s improvement. When it came to energy and excitement, the Red Wings were ahead of opponents.
But it doesn’t take long in the NHL for teams to find their rhythm and appreciate their reality. This is professional hockey. The advantage the Red Wings early evaporated and they have found themselves needing to raise their level of intensity to be able to compete.