The Detroit Red Wings are a professional ice hockey team based in Detroit, Michigan. They are part of the Central Division in NHL's Western Conference. Since being founded in 1926, the Detroit Red Wings have won 11 Stanley Cups, their latest championship being won during the 2007- 2008 season. The Red Wings have appeared in the NHL post-season every season since 1990, the longest current post-season appearance streak in all of American professional sports. The Red Wings are one of the most popular hockey franchises in North America, so much that fans and analysts have nicknamed Detroit "Hockeytown". They have won the most Stanley Cup championships (11 total) of any NHL franchise based in the United States. They are third overall in total NHL championships, behind the Montreal Canadiens (24 total) and the Toronto Maple Leafs (13 total). Their current home rink is Joe Louis Arena which seats 20,066.
Fan Tradition: Legend of the Octopus
The "Legend of the Octopus" is a sports tradition during Detroit Red Wings playoff games, in which an octopus is thrown onto the ice surface for good luck. During the playoffs, Joe Louis Arena is generally adorned with a giant octopus with red eyes, nicknamed "Al" after Joe Louis Arena head ice manager Al Sobotka. The 1952 playoffs featured the start of the tradition--the octopus throw. The owner of a local fish market threw one from the stands onto the ice. The eight legs were symbolic of the eight wins it took to win the Stanley Cup at the time. The Red Wings went on to sweep both of their opponents that year en route to a Stanley Cup championship. The NHL has, at various times, tried to eliminate this tradition but it continues to this day.
During the 2008 Stanley Cup finals, seafood wholesalers in Pittsburgh refused to sell octupuses to anyone from Michigan.
During the first playoff game of the 09-10 season, a rubber snake was thrown onto the ice when Coyotes' player Keith Yandle scored.
A Red Wings player appeared on an NHL video game cover was for EA Sport's 'NHL 96', which featured former Detroit Red Wings captain Steve Yzerman and former New Jersey Devils player Scott Stevens on the cover.
The swedish version of NHL 08 featured Henrik Zetterberg on the cover.
Stanley Cup Playoffs 09-10
The Detroit Red Wings finished 5th in the Western Conference, pitting them against 4th team Phoenix Coyotes. The first game ended in a 3-2 loss to the Red Wings. They won the second game by 7-4, tieing up the series at 1-1. The Coyotes took a 2-1 lead in the series on Sunday the 18th of April with a 4-2 win. The Red Wings then tied the series again at 2-2, with a win of 3-0 over the Coyotes. On Friday the 23rd, the Red Wings took a 3-2 lead in the series, with a 4-1 win over the Coyotes. On Sunday the 25th, the Coyotes tied the series at 3-3 after beating the Red Wings at home with a final score of 5-2. In game 7, Detroit opened the scoring in the second period en route to a 6-1 win on the road, their first game 7 road victory since 1964. They then fell against the San Jose Sharks in the semi-finals, almost getting swept at 4-1 games.
Stanley Cup Playoffs 10-11
After finishing 3rd in the Western Conference, they were facing the Phoenix Coyotes in their first round of the playoffs. They swept the Coyotes, making them the first team that season to go forth to the next round. Just like last year, they faced the San Jose Sharks in the semi-finals. After three straight losses, putting them in the awkward position of having to come back from a 0-3 deficit, they won three straight games. After the seventh game, the San Jose Sharks won and went on to the Conference Finals against the Vancouver Canucks.
Stanley Cup Playoffs 11-12
The Red Wings would go on to have another 100+ points season this year, and ended fifth in the Western Conference. They would get eliminated in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Nashville Predators, only being able to take one game from the Tennessee team.
Current Lineup for the Detroit Red Wings
Captains and Alternate Captains
- Captain: Nicklas Lidström
- Alternate Captains: Niklas Kronwall, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg
Percentage of Players per Country in the Red Wings
Canada: 12 (37%)
Czech Republic: 2 (6%)
Finland: 1 (3%)
Russia: 1 (3%)
Sweden: 9 (28%)
USA: 6 (19%)
Slovenia: 1 (3%)