These are the types of games that takes years off of coaches’ lives.
The Detroit Red Wings absolutely sleepwalked through a 7-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens. Mike Babcock was predictably displeased, as you can see from these two comments via Dave Stubbs:
“I’m not going to study video of this,” Babcock said. “I’m going for a drink.”
“It’s unfortunate that people came to watch the Red Wings play and they never got to see ’em”
(Perhaps I’m slipping into All-Star Break form, but am I the only person who imagined Rodney Dangerfield’s “No respect” tone in Babcock’s quips? Probably, but you should try it too.)
Many will pass this off as a classic trap game, but it’s not crazy to say that Detroit might regret its lackadaisical efforts. Here’s a snap shot of where this loss leaves them and the rest of the Central Division heading into the break:
Detroit: 50 Games Played; 33-16-1 for 67 points
St. Louis: 49 GP; 29-13-7 for 65 points
Nashville: 50 GP; 30-16-4 for 64 points
Chicago: 50 GP; 29-15-6 for 64 points
As you can see, Detroit remains on solid footing in the short-term as a St. Louis Blues win wouldn’t dislodge the Red Wings from the top spot since they’ll take the wins tie-breaker.
Still, the Red Wings have to kick themselves for muffing this punt. Even generating a single point would have given them a valuable chunk of breathing room in a cutthroat division.
It’s the kind of letdown that might just drive a coach to the bottle.
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