The Detroit Red Wings didn’t help their draft odds, but Joe Veleno may have signaled a future getting brighter by the game. Veleno netted his first NHL goal on a wicked snapper and the Red Wings rallied from a 2-0 hole to defeat Columbus 5-2 Friday evening.
Veleno opened the scoring for Detroit and was followed shortly after with a Danny DeKeyser goal that was from what was a ridiculous angle. Jakub Vrana notched his seventh goal as a Red Wing, giving Detroit a 3-2 lead before the second period was through. Vladislav Namestnikov would get the final two, both empty netters as Detroit took the first of two with Columbus over the next couple of days.
Red Wings Game Notes
- Every Red Wings fan sat conflicted knowing that a win would drop Detroit’s lottery favor from fourth to what is now sixth. Veleno’s goal was great to see but the rapid fire goals from DeKeyser and then Vrana sent a shellshocked Blue Jackets squad into the locker room trailing. Though Detroit’s lottery luck hasn’t favored them over the past four seasons, the higher the pick, the better the odds of picking top two.
- In spite of that, Veleno’s first goal continues to point the young prospect in the right direction as he seeks to be one of many pieces that lifts Detroit out of the rebuild. Vrana also continues to make Yzerman look like a genius when he made the trade with Washington just under a month ago.
- An interesting side note heading into the game was Jeff Blashill addressing his status earlier. The Detroit News’ Bob Wojnowski seems to think that Blashill has shown enough to be back for another season, but when answering Jeff Riger, Blashill was vague in terms of what could be. Regardless, the Wings still played competitive hockey during long stretches of the season even while being decimated by injury. It will certainly be interesting to see what Yzerman does when the season winds down.