We knew it was coming sooner or later, but with the season that the Detroit Red Wings have had, it was going to be sooner.
With Friday night’s 4-1 loss at the hands of the New York Islanders, the Red Wings were mathematically eliminated from participating in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the fourth straight year. Unfortunately, their solid grip on 31st place in the NHL assured them this fate.
Last season, they were officially eliminated on March 12. The year before that? March 28.
“It’s been tough,” said Frans Nielsen afterwards. “We are all here because we like competing, we like to win.
“This has just been a long year. I think we’re trying to have fun and stick together and try to come to work every day and work hard. Trying to keep our head high. That’s all we can do right now. But it hasn’t been fun every day.”
The silver lining in this is that they still have the highest odds to land the first overall draft selection in the 2020 NHL Draft, where phenom Alexis Lafranière is expected to be the first pick.
However, it doesn’t do much for the team as it currently stands.
“It sucks to be in a spot where you’re eliminated this early,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “But that part of it sucked for a while. We knew we’ve been out for too long. There’s no other word to describe it except that it sucks.”
– – Quotes courtesy of Helene St. James of The Detroit Free Press Link– –