Detroit — The Red Wings keep piling up victories at a rate probably nobody expected.
They capped off an impressive back-to-back set Wednesday, defeating the expansion Seattle Kraken, 4-3 in a shootout.
Coming 24 hours after a big road win in Boston, the Wings stretched their win streak to a season-high four games.
Dylan Larkin and Adam Erne scored goals in the shootout, as the Wings won the shootout 2-1 to clinch the victory.
“We’ve gone back to our (type of) game, we kind of lost it when we were on the road,” said forward Lucas Raymond, who scored his 10th goal. “We kind of hit the reset button when we got back home and tonight wasn’t the prettiest game, but we got it done and that’s a huge strength.”
The Wings’ biggest loss Wednesday was the news forward Tyler Bertuzzi was put on the COVID-19 protocol list.
Bertuzzi, the NHL’s lone unvaccinated player, will miss the next 10 days and five games in that span, said coach Jeff Blashill.
“He’s feeling fine,” said Blashill, adding there are no plans to promote a player from Grand Rapids at this time. “If we have everyone healthy we’ll go with the group we have, and if not, we’ll call somebody up.”
Bertuzzi joins defenseman Danny DeKeyser on the Wings’ protocol list. DeKeyser is nearing a week on the list.
Seattle’s Ryan Donato scored his second goal of the game and fifth of the season, tying the game, 3-3.
Jamie Oleksiak skated the puck into the zone and left the puck for Donato skating down the wing, Donato beat goaltender Thomas Griess from near the dot, at 14:16 of the third period.
Raymond, who earlier Wednesday won the NHL’s rookie of the month award for November, snapped a third-period 2-2 tie.
Raymond got the puck in the slot, quickly whirled, and snapped a shot that Kraken goalie Philipp Grubauer barely reacted to for Raymond’s 10th goal.
“Kind of a bouncing puck in the middle and just trying to put it in the area of the net,” Raymond said. “Shoot it as fast as possible, and this time it went in.”
Griess earned his 150th career victory while making 21 saves, after seeing Alex Nedeljkovic get the last four starts.
“That’s a great number, good for him, it’s a lot of wins in this league,” Blashill said. “Thomas is a good pro and he works hard every day. He wasn’t as sharp at the start, and that’s to be expected, but as the game went along he was sharper.”
With each game, each victory, there’s a growing sense the Wings can sustain this success and play meaningful, important games late in the regular season.
“For sure it was a great win last night in Boston, so to follow up here and get in late and and it’s a tough game, it’s big of the team to pull this one through,” Raymond said.
The Wings have found a variety of ways to win games, which is also a major positive development.
“We weren’t at our best and we found a way to win, which is critically important,” Blashill said. “You want to learn lessons while you’re winning, and certainly there are lessons, but you want to learn while you’re winning and we did that.
“Our compete was high (Wednesday) and our energy was good. I didn’t think our execution was great, we were sloppy at times. Sometimes the game is a little bit harder when you get in late and you don’t play quite as smart as you need to play, and there was some of that.”
Robby Fabbri (power play) and Vladislav Namestnikov added goals for the Wings, while Vince Dunn (power play) and Donato answered with Seattle goals.
Fabbri opened the game’s scoring, on the power play.
Larkin took two bad-angle shots from the goal line at Grubauer and the second one bounced to Fabbri in the slot, who had a largely open net to score his fifth goal at 4:46 of the second period.
Namestnikov tied it 2-2 just before the end of the second period. Namestnikov drove the down the slot and snapped a shot that bounced off Grubauer’s glove and body and into the net.