Pregame: Red Wings @ Lightning – Game 5 – 4/21

Is this the end?

The Red Wings visit the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight for Game Five of their Atlantic Division Semifinal matchup, one loss from elimination. After consecutive virtual-must-win games, Detroit now faces an actual must-win to keep their season alive.

With a loss, the Red Wings’ season comes to a close with just a single playoff victory to their credit for the second time in three years.

With a loss, Pavel Datsyuk‘s NHL career could end.

The Wings are in a bad position. They’ve never won a Game Five on the road after going loss-loss-win-loss in the first four games. They haven’t looked good in three of the previous four games. They haven’t won in this arena all season.

Win and force a Game Six at home. Maybe all that does is give Datsyuk a proper send-off. Maybe it’s the start of something more. A win opens up possibilities. A loss is the end.

Game time is 7:00 PM on FSD/NBCSN/CBC.

Author: Clark Rasmussen

Clark founded the site that would become DetroitHockey.Net in September of 1996 with no idea what it would lead to. He continues to write for the site and executes the site's design and development.