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The Landlubber’s Guide to the Detroit Red Wings

Get to know the other cephalopod team

Tampa Bay Lightning v Detroit Red Wings - Game Four Photo by Dave Reginek/NHLI via Getty Images

Hey you. You’re swept up in all this Seattle Kraken hype. You want to know more about hockey but don’t know where to start. Well, we want to help make these games easy and fun for you to watch.

Throughout the season, we’ll release Landlubber’s Guides designed with the new fan in mind. This includes basic need-to-know info for you to absorb before you watch Kraken games and highlights.

Let’s dive into the Detroit Red Wings.

Are they any good?

The Red Wings aren’t among the league’s best, but they don’t need to be this season. They’re solidly in a rebuild phase. They haven’t finished higher than 5th in their division since 2016 and completely bottomed out in the 2019-20 season when they ended the year with the worst record in the NHL.

Things are looking up this year in Detroit, however. They’re sitting on a very respectable 11-9-3 record and if the season ended today, their 5-year playoff draught would come to an end. It might be time to switch from calling them “rebuilding” and instead refer to them as “rebuilt.”

Who should I look out for?

  • Dylan Larkin (#71, Center) - The team captain, Larkin is the only player on the roster that was with the Red Wings the last time they made the playoffs. He’s scoring at a career-best point per game pace so far in 2021, but that hasn’t helped him find pants that fit.
  • Moritz Seider (#53, Defense) - The former sixth overall pick from 2019 is getting his first NHL action this year and thriving. He leads all rookie defenders in assists (12) and points (14). That probably has something to do with the psychic connection he has with his teammates.
  • Lucas Raymond (#23, Left Wing) - Detroit not only has the top scoring rookie defenseman on their roster in Seider, they’ve also got the top-scoring forward in Lucas Raymond. Raymond leads the team with 21 points so far this year and has shown no signs of slowing down.

Any Seattle Ties?

Forward Michael Rasumussen spent four seasons not in Seattle, but nearby with the Tri-City Americans — Carey Price’s old alma mater. He’s easy to spot, as he’s the only 6’6” forward on the ice.

Odds & Ends

  • Seattle Kraken drafted Dennis Chowolski from the Red Wings. He was snagged by the Washington Capitals after the Kraken put him on waivers in October.
  • Steve Yzerman is the legendary Detroit figure at the helm of their rebuild. He spent his entire playing career with the Wings, winning 3 Stanley Cups. After retiring, he helped build the current powerhouse Tampa Bay Lightning as a member of their front office before leaving in 2019 to take over as general manager of the Red Wings.
  • I recently came across this absolutely insane clip of Detroit Red Wings legend Sergei Fedorov.
  • Fedorov was a member of the “Russian Five,” the first wave of Russian hockey players to come to the NHL and win a few Stanley Cups. That whole story is bonkers, by the way.
  • One of the longer-standing traditions in hockey is the Red Wings fans’ history of tossing an octopus on the ice after a big win. Which makes tonight the first real battle for squid-team supremacy.

Another early game today, the puck drops at 4:30 PST in Detroit. Watch on TV on ROOT Sports NW for regional fans or on ESPN+ for out-of-market viewers.