Detroit Red Wings Set NHL Record For Longest Home Winning Streak (But Should It Have An Asterisk?)

The Detroit Red Wings surpassed the 1929-30 Boston Bruins and 1975-76 Flyers for the longest home wining streak in NHL history with 21st straight win, in a 3-1 victory over the Dallas Stars last night at Joe Louis Arena.

Leading up to the record setting night, their potential feat was being downplayed since three of their wins came in a shootout, which was introduced into the NHL in 2005.

The Bruins of the late-twenties and the Flyers of the mid-seventies were not afforded this luxury nor did they have an overtime period following regulation. So is this record legitimate or will it be tainted with an asterisk?

Regardless of its legitimacy, the streak is impressive nonetheless. Stars forward Adam Burish, the goal scorer for Dallas feels that the feat is equally if not more exceptional.

” I think its harder than it was in the 70s, just because of the parity. There are no games where you can just show up and think you’re going to win,” said Burish in a post-game interview.

As the clock wound down in the third period and it seemed destined that the Wings were headed to the record books, the crowd at Joe Louis was chanting “21!, 21!, 21!”

“In the end they were really cheering before and after the buzzer went, it was a pretty cool feeling,” said Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg.

Photo Courtesy Flickr Image

Zetterberg opened the scoring eight minutes into the game on the power-play and Brad Stuart added a goal less than two minutes later, which turned out to be the game-winner.

Joey MacDonald, who has done an exceptional job filling in for the injured Jimmy Howard, turned aside 20 of the 21 shots he faced for the win. MacDonald was called up from the Wings AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids and is 4-1-1 with a 1.72 GAA, and .930 save % since joining the big club.

In the current wining streak the Red Wings have used three different goalies, which further speaks to their dominance on home ice.

Detroit needs all the points they can get in an attempt to win their division and conference and to try and secure home ice advantage for the playoffs. They’re in arguably the toughest division in the league, with three other division rivals currently in position to make the post-season.

St. Louis, Nashville, and Chicago sit 4th, 5th and 6th respectively in the Western Conference. The Blues are only five points back with two games in hand. The Wings have seven games remaining against those three clubs and out of their 24 games left on the schedule 16 are against teams that are currently in the playoffs.

The road ahead for the Detroit is not an easy one, but if they are able to secure that home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs, one would have to consider them a favorite to win the Stanley Cup.

This record will probably have an asterisk next to it when it gets entered into the NHL’s record books, and one could argue that it deserves to have one there. Regardless, this is a very impressive run that the Wings are on right now, and no asterisk can lessen the value of this remarkable team accomplishment.

About Peter Stewart


  1. Timothy Pertler says:

    *There should NOT be an asterix! True, it took longer to win some of the games AND it also provided more time to lose a game!

  2. Why bother keeping records then if you are going to add an asterick.   No future games will ever be played under the same environment held decades ago.   Would you go back and add an asterick to the old record stating that they only had 5 other teams to compete against?

  3. I think the old records should have an asterisk because there were very few european/russian players in the league at that time that alone makes up for the addition of OT and shootouts. Also, I could have scored on 80% of the goalies back then when I was 9.

  4. tiredofnegativeignorance says:

    what a stupid article. you ask the question based on a game that has changed as everything changes. should this article have an asterick? i think so. 21 home wins is a record period. you make the argument that 3 of the wins are from shootouts, yet the talent, game, speed & player size is so far ahead of what it was then it should not even enter the equation. get real.

    • A couple of things.

      First off, in defense of the author, he didn’t originally intend for article to be framed as asterisk/no asterisk. I added that to the title because I saw people discussing it and it seemed like a relevant hook to get people reading. Mission accomplished.

      Secondly, the *reading* part of the equation is pretty important. Based on your comment, I question whether you read this: “Regardless, this is a very impressive run that the Wings are on right
      now, and no asterisk can lessen the value of this remarkable team
      accomplishment.” The author was analyzing whether the record WOULD get an asterisk while providing both sides of the argument that was already out there.

      So, if I may be frank, if you really are so “tired of negative ignorance” as your comment handle implies, a good place to start would be fully digesting an article before you comment on it.

      I do greatly appreciate your visit to our site, and taking the time to comment. But it’s just not in my nature to see an author get railroaded completely unnecessarily. It’s not a stupid article. It’s a fair, accurate, timely article that discusses a relevant question. Maybe you think the mere mention of an asterisk is stupid, but then you might want to take that up with the thousands upon thousands of other hockey fans who have been discussing it. Not Pete.

      • tiredofnegativeignorance says:

        i did read and digest the article, the author poses the question as you suggest, but then in the last paragraph makes the statement that it “probably will” get an asterick. this was not only a question posed. one should argue that no asterick is needed. overtime wins also have the opportunity for overtime losses, why the asterick? again stupid question. does bostons’ record have an asterick w/ two overtime wins in their accomplishment? as for my OPINION as to stupidity, i was not alone. i disagree that an asterick takes nothing away from an accomplishment. an asterick to me puts a “barry bonds” comparison immediately in many peoples’ minds- thanks mostly to you the media…..

        • tiredofnegativeignorance says:

          anotherwords, the rules have changed, the shootout should not penalize the teams accomplishment. the asterick notates an “abnormality”… the record was made in accordance to the game as it is when made. what bothers me the most is that we all look to find the “abnormality” instead of rejoicing in the achievement. no bad to the author, just why question what they did? yes the shootout didn’t exist then, but as with the overtime the wings could have lost in any of those shootout wins. why penalize or even question it?

  5. Why should it have an asterisk? Boston had two overtime wins when they set their record. Who cares if it take an extra period or more to get it done. It’s done and they won. I would say it about any team in the league. A win is a win no matter if it is a shootout, overtime, or just regulation.

  6. What an absolute stupid article this is! It just goes to show you that these people have nothing better to do but look for things to write about. Everybody hates the Red Wings, and it’s clearly stated in this article. They NEVER get the credit they deserve, even though they’ve won the most Stanley cups in recent years. Just like they said “no European hockey player will ever lead his team to a Stanley cup. Detroit PROVED those people wrong. Lidstrom became the first European-born-and-trained captain to win the Stanley Cup. It happens time and time again, over and over….Detroit this, Detroit that!!! The fact is, I don’t think people understand that the game today is different today in many ways than it was back in those days. Even going back to the days when the Montreal Canadians and Edmonton Oilers won all those Stanley cups. Most people feel that they were overall a better team than Detroit is today because they won 4 or even 5 cups in a row. Well, guess what? THERE WERE ONLY 6 TEAMS DURING THAT ERA!!! NOT 30, like there are today. These days you have to go through AT LEAST 16 GRUELING hockey games to win the Ultimate prize. First of all, the competition wasn’t the same back then, Secondly, there are MANY MORE teams in the league, and Finally, the players are much more skilled. Asterisk? R U kidding me? Just because three of their wins came during a shootout? Gimme a break! The Detroit Red Wings don’t make the rule changes, the NHL does that. Who cares that three of their games came during shootouts, a win is a win. Period!!! People need to face the fact that Detroit is the best hockey team, not only in the league, but in the world. They continue to amaze me time and time again. I am even guilty of thinking that they weren’t going to be an elite team this year and that they would fall down in the standings due to the loss of so many great players retiring. I’m no hockey expert, but there is NO DOUBT in my mind that this team has proven they are the best, even without breaking records. Do those things even matter? Not really? What matters is winning and this team continues to do it year after year and time and time again. It all starts with the owner, Mr. Illitch, arguably the BEST owner in sports today. And that is why Detroit has had so much success and continues that success, because of a great owner that will do whatever it takes to win a championship! Detroit Red Wings fan forever! Thank You Mr. Illitch for all the memories, even if the team never wins another championship, which is not likely to happen.

  7. jimmydugan44 says:

     Yes Moron, you could have scored against those goalies back then. First of all, Bernie Parent, who was the goalie of that Flyers’ team, was THE BEST GOALIE of that period of hockey, just like Bobby Orr was better than any other defensemen at that time. To compare Parent with Brodeur and/or Orr with Lindstrom is just stupid.  It is impossible to compare sports and athletes from one decade to another. It makes for fun conversation. but that is about it. Let the Redwings have their record. Records are taken into context by people who actually know the history of sports. Example: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, but no knowledgeable person will argue that he was the greatest player of all-time just because he scored the most points. Also, Parent would have kicked your a$$ all over the ice with the rest of that team. You would never get near him  to have a chance at scoring.

    •  Are you replying to me? If so, your a dumba$$!!!

    •  You’re telling me that ONE guy would have kicked the Detroit Red Wings A$$eS?
      Dude you are smoking some good stuff man!!!! You obviously did not read my post too well, cuz if you would have, you WOULD HAVE seen that Detroit has won 11 Stanley cups total. 4 of which have been in the last decade, so don’t call me a moron, you are the moron! ANYONE that thinks guys were tougher back then, has NO CLUE!!

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