from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
The Detroit Red Wings followed a good November (8-4-1) with a rotten December, including their current 1-5-2 stretch that has them just two points out of the Eastern Conference cellar.
They have drifted nine points away from the final playoff spot. That in itself seems insurmountable, but to make matters worse, the three teams ahead of them chasing the final wild card spot each have three games in hand.
Here is a look at some trends and things to watch for this week:
Abdelkader, Vanek struggling
The Red Wings aren't getting much production from veterans Justin Abdelkader and Thomas Vanek.
Abdelkader has just one goal and six assists in his past 24 games, despite spending much of that stretch on the top line. He has five goals and seven assists in 40 games.
Vanek, in 15 games this month, has produced two goals and four assists. With five goals and 10 assists in 32 games, he's on pace for career lows in offense. Vanek is three games short of 1,000 for his career.
more "trends and things"...