Almost a month later, things have changed between the Red Wings and St. Louis Blues.

If you watched the season opener Jan. 19, you saw the Blues trounce the Red Wings, 6-0.

The Red Wings were awful. The Blues looked like Stanley Cup champions.

Several weeks later, perceptions have changed.

The Wings are 7-4-1 (15 points), have won three consecutive games, and are on the upswing.

The Blues, conversely, are 6-5-1 (13 points), have lost four straight games, and appear in disarray.

"It was one of those games where nothing worked for us," defenseman Niklas Kronwall said of the opening night loss. "We didn't do anything right. We were two steps behind and taking penalties. Our penalty kill was horrible and power play was dreadful.

"Not a lot of things worked for us."

The Red Wings would normally shake off that loss and forget about it. But, interestingly, they seemed to carry around that ugly loss. It was almost as if the team needed to remind itself it needed to do better than that.

"We owed it to ourselves and our fans," Kronwall said. "Everyone in here felt we were a better team than that. It was embarrassing walking off the ice. You didn't want to show yourself at the restaurant or anything for the next few days.

"But since then, we've done better. There's a lot of things to be worked on, but it's moving in the right direction."

This will be the fourth game between these two teams in 13 games — the Wings winning the two meetings after the opening night loss and dictating the tempo in the victories.

"We need that every night," coach Mike Babcock said. "We did that against L.A., too. The first couple of shifts, they were better than us, and then we really got going.



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130212/SPORTS0103/302120418#ixzz2Kn3XEgzR