Detroit Red Wings: Losing Now May Be Key To Winning Later

Matt HutterAnalyst INovember 4, 2011

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 1:  Devin Setoguchi #10 of the Minnesota Wild scores the overtime winning goal as Brad Stuart #23 of the Detroit Red Wings looks on as the puck goes past Jimmy Howard #35 of the Detroit Wings during their NHL game at Joe Louis Arena November 1, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan.  (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)
Dave Sandford/Getty Images

In general, I'm not really a "glass half-full" type of guy.

I'm not usually on the lookout for silver linings when dark clouds appear, and I rarely view any door closing as a sure sign that a window will soon be opening.

For the most part, I am a pessimist.

That said, realizing that things cannot get much worse for the Detroit Red Wings right now has nothing to do with one's outlook—it's a fact.

The team that started the season 5-0 is now 13th in the Western Conference and seven points behind the Central Division-leading Chicago Blackhawks.

The view they have from down there isn't cheery or even particularly hopeful.

Just 11 games into their season, they have dug themselves into a hole that will take a considerable amount of effort to crawl out of, and even when they do, they may be too far behind the pack to challenge for their customary top-three conference finish in April.

This is the "new NHL" after all, and teams really can lose playoff spots in October.

It's hard to remember the last time the Wings suffered such a fast and furious fall from grace, and it's even more difficult to imagine how or when they will pick themselves up again, but they will.

The Red Wings will win another hockey game, and they will put this horrific streak of failure behind them.

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 03:  Justin Abdelkader #8 of the Detroit Red Wings gets into a scuffle with Cory Sarich #6 and Mark Giordano #5 of the Calgary Flames at Joe Louis Arena on November 3, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Image
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

In fact, it may be this streak of ineptitude that helps them succeed in the future.

Every team goes through slumps, but the best teams not only find a way to get out of them but learn how to avoid them moving forward.

Right now, there are no glaring holes in the roster, no major injuries and no questionable leadership on which to pin Detroit's current misery.

They have the power, the talent and the knowledge to right their own ship, and that's a significant thing.

To a man, we've heard players express their confidence in each other and in their system and we've heard their belief that simply making the right adjustments both in practice and in games will put them back on the winning path.

A lot of teams say that kind of stuff at times like these.

However, unlike teams whose failure is really due to a lack of talent or experience, the Red Wings are simply a few internal tweaks away from returning to the dominant team we saw start this season.

Losing six games in a row forces a team to look into every nook and cranny of their system and to find ways to make them collectively better.

The Red Wings are broken right now, but how else does a team rebuild into something even stronger?

The Red Wings will win again—and soon.

Take it from me, I'm a pessimist.


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