Red Wings Lose Season Finale 5-4 in Overtime to Columbus

Octopus Thrower

Every fan watching the Detroit Red Wings-Columbus Blue Jackets game knew what this game was about: Tanking.  The Red Wings fell in overtime to Columbus 5-4, but despite the loss, they’ll still be picking lower than the Jackets due to having more regulation wins.

It was a game that neither team appeared to have any interest in winning even though they combined for nine goals.

Tied at one in the second period, Danny Dekeyser scored his second in as many games when he rocketed a shot through Matiss Kivlenieks that put Detroit up 2-1. Columbus answered back on what looked like a potential offside but head coach Jeff Blashill didn’t challenge–even though it looked like he might have a case.

Yes. The tank was obviously at the forefront of everyone’s mind.

The game remained tied until Columbus took a 3-2 lead shorthanded, and Cam Atkinson just narrowly missed another one. Seconds later, Sam Gagner scored on the power play to tie the game at three. Columbus would get another one late, but Valtteri Filppula decides to shoot instead of pass for once and of course, the puck goes in, tying the game. The game ended with just 20 seconds remaining in overtime, mercifully completing a season that saw gains but still shows it’s a work in progress in Detroit.

Red Wings Game Notes

  • If this is the end of Darren Helm‘s time with the Red Wings, I’d like to wish him the best. Joking about his lack of breakaway scoring aside, Helm had some memorable shifts, and goals during Detroit’s competitive seasons. He was a scrappy forward who stood out defensively and with his speed, making a name for himself during the 2008 playoff run. Though it seems the writing is on the wall, seeing him back at a very affordable price “to ice a team” would be fine by me.
  • The idea that losing is the only way for teams to become better is something that needs to be examined. Fans of both teams felt the same angst every time their own team scored–wondering if they’d just jeopardized the future of the their team. There has to be a better way but unless Brendan Shanahan is back in the front office helping make more progressive decisions, I don’t see any massive changes occurring.
  • The “Will Blashill be Back” questions should be answered relatively soon. He’s done what Yzerman has asked for–improvement and development (though the latter is subjective to some) and it wouldn’t be a shock to see him back. Yzerman could opt for a new voice, but the prudent move may be to see if Blash can continue the momentum with what will most likely be another improved roster.

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