They have put together some impressive wins, bad losses and have had losing streaks that were far too lengthy. They still find themselves in the playoff mix, though.
The ultimate answers to these questions will determine if the Red Wings make the playoffs this season
Darren Helm has only played one game this season. He has suffered from a back injury that he just cannot seem to bounce back from.
However, he recently visited a back specialist who believes that they have found the problem.
Mike Babcock has described Helm as the best third-line center in the game, and the team really misses his play.
With Helm out of the lineup, both the power play and penalty kill have suffered. Helm’s effect is greatly missed on the penalty kill, as his speed and pesky play often disrupt the opposition’s power play.
Without Helm there, the team has been one of the worst penalty-killing units in the league.
If his back heals and he can return to the lineup at full strength, then it will be a big boost to the team.
If Helm's back continues to force him to miss more time, or even the rest of the season, then the team will have to find another player to fill that important role.
Damien Brunner was brought over on a one-year contract. He has more than shown that he is ready for the NHL. Through 20 games, he leads the team with 10 goals plus two game-winners in shootouts.
He has adjusted well to the NHL level of competition and is just off being a point-per-game player, as he has 15 points. He is the type of dynamic scorer that the team is looking for.
Re-signing Brunner will give the team some fire power for years to come.
This has been the most injury-riddled season for Detroit in recent memory. Thirty players have now suited up for the Red Wings this season.
Sometimes they are missing multiple players at once, other times they get one player healthy just in time to see another player go down hurt.
The team has yet to play all their intended starters in a game this season.
In any season, this many injuries would hurt a team, but with only 48 games this year, it really puts the team in a bind. The fact the Red Wings are still in the playoff mix despite the injuries does bode well for them, though.
If they can still hang around the playoff race as players return from their injuries, the Red Wings should be able to make a move up the standings.
The big question is can they hold on? And, perhaps even scarier, who might be the next player to get hurt?
It is one of the laws in sports: One player’s injury is another player’s opportunity.
With all the injuries the team has suffered, several players are getting more playing time then was expected coming into the season. While not all of the subs have played well, there are a few who have stood out.
Brian Lashoff has parlayed his surprise opportunity into a three-year contract. His strong play and sound defense have been a big help to the defensive unit.
Both Tomas Tatar and Joakim Andersson have played very well of late as well. Each of them has three goals with minimal ice time.
These players will force Mike Babcock into some tough decisions. Lashoff has certainly earned a spot to be a full-time member of the team. Tatar and Andersson are making a case that they should be in the regular lineup as well.
What will Babcock do when the injured players return?
Who sits, who gets sent down to the minors and who gets traded are some big questions facing the team in the next couple of weeks.
Will the Red Wings be able to continue the beloved playoff streak?
It now sits at 21 straight seasons—the best in team history, fifth-best all-time and the longest current streak in the league.
The team has been up and down this season, however. A five-game losing streak gave way to a weekend where the Red Wings outscored their opponents 11-3.
Still, it is hard to believe that this team will not make the playoffs.
The Red Wings have suffered through an incredible amount of injuries. Despite this, they are still in the playoff mix.
When their healthy core players return to the team, they should be able to make yet another postseason appearance to keep the streak alive.
In Detroit, just making the playoffs is usually not enough, but with this team and their current struggles, that may be all that can be expected this year.