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Red Wings explode early, trounce Blues, 6-1

Ted Kulfan, The Detroit News on

Published in Hockey

DETROIT — It used to be the Red Wings were on the other end of these games, on the bad end of a lopsided score.

Not as much anymore. And especially lately, and certainly wasn't the case Saturday against St. Louis.

The Wings exploded early with three quick goals and cruised to a 6-1 victory over the Blues.

The Wings (31-20-6) won for the 14th time in 20 games (14-4-2) since Jan. 1 and kept the first wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference standings.

The message before the game was to get off to a strong start, something the Wings hadn't done the last three games — and the message was executed.

"The boys were skating and came away with some finishes in the first (period)," coach Derek Lalonde said. "Outside of some sloppy puck play a little bit in the second, it was a pretty complete game. Just good points (earned), there was urgency in our game.

 

"If we're going to stay in this battle and we get above this (playoff) line, we'll need every single point and we got two today."

Lalonde didn't feel as if the Wings made, and were making, any sort of statement in front of a national television audience.

"We're in a stretch of playing some real good hockey and it's more about when you're peaking in your game, take advantage of it," Lalonde said. "We're doing that right now. There will be some ups and down ahead, but we're in a real good spot right now and we need to keep riding this."

This game was decided early, and convincingly, as so often Wings' games were over the last seven seasons while the Wings drifted and missed the playoffs.

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