Wings

The Sudbury, Ontario native has scored five goals through the first three games, which is tied for the NHL lead along with Anze Kopitar of the Los Angeles Kings. Bertuzzi didn't waste any time getting off to a quick start, scoring four times in the Home Opener, while tallying the eventual game-winner in Tuesday's 4-1 win over Columbus.

Bertuzzi looks fast and crisp, and has resumed the attacking style of play that Red Wings fans have grown accustomed to.

"He looks like he's got great energy. He's been on pucks. I think he's always kind of a junkyard dog in terms of how he plays, but he looks like he's skating well, which is great," Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said. "Over the years, you've had different guys that have had major back surgery, and sometimes the damage is more significant than others. You just don't know, and so it's been great to see him skating well, feeling good, and obviously playing good hockey."

Video: Jeff Blashill | Practice | 10/20

Blashill first began coaching Bertuzzi in the 2015 Calder Cup Playoffs during his final season mentoring the Grand Rapids Griffins. Bertuzzi was sick for the first two games of Grand Rapids' first-round series against the Toronto Marlies, and didn't play as the Griffins dropped the first two. He returned for the rest of the series, and Grand Rapids closed out Toronto in five games.

"I think Bert's a winning hockey player; I've said that before," Blashill said. "He's somebody that I think is the type of player you want on your team. He does a lot of things well, he's a good defensive player, he goes to the net hard, he wins puck battles and he's got skill."

Bertuzzi and the Red Wings are hoping to wrap up the homestand on a high note when they welcome the Calgary Flames to Little Caesars Arena for a 7:30 p.m. puck drop on Thursday night from Little Caesars Arena (Bally Sports Detroit, Red Wings Radio Network).

Calgary enters the game with a 0-1-1 record after picking up its first point in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Monday. Elias Lindholm has scored two goals in the early going, while Johnny Gaudreau and Rasmus Andersson have both picked up a pair of assists. Jacob Markstrom has earned both starting assignments in goal.

Calgary is under the leadership of head coach Darryl Sutter, who began his second stint coaching the club on March 4, 2021. He was also the team's general manager from 2003-2010.

Video: Tyler Bertuzzi | Practice | 10/20

 

Breaking up the season

In Blashill's media session on Wednesday, he gave some insight into how he and his coaching staff approach and evaluate the season in real-time. Over the course of an 82-game season, the team's trajectory can be measured in about 16, five-game segments. That first segment will wrap up on Saturday, when Detroit plays its fifth game of the season, on the road in Montreal.

"If you get six out of 10 points every five-game segment, if you extrapolate that over 82 games, including the couple extra games you have in there, you're at about 98 points for the season, which generally is a playoff team," Blashill said. "It helps kind of give you a parameter of where you're at."

Bertuzzi said the dressing room also evaluates themselves in segments, and a fast start is key.

"Look at the first 10, 15, 20 games and get out in front of those," Bertuzzi said. "Just play good hockey and try to have a winning record. Just build from there.

"The chemistry, it's there, and it's going to continue to be there. If we can just keep playing the way we are doing, playing a little bit smarter and just doing it the right way, I think we're going to get some more wins."

Source : https://www.nhl.com/redwings/news/red-wings-flames-game-preview-october-21st-2021/c-327066344

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