Mr. Ilitch is gone. Gustav Nyquist speared an opponent in the face. And the Red Wings are wallowing in the basement of the NHL’s Atlantic Division.
It’s hard to cheer for the Detroit Red Wings these days. It’s been sad since Hall of Famer Gordie Howe died last year, but the death Friday of popular owner Mike Ilitch made it even sadder.
The Red Wings are spending their final season in Joe Louis Arena, but Mr. Ilitch won’t see them move into their $733-million Little Caesars Arena. It’s named after his pizza company, whose success allowed Ilitch to buy the Red Wings and the Detroit Tigers and donate millions of dollars to worthwhile causes.
Mike Ilitch made the Red Wings into Stanley Cup champions and perennial contenders. They look poised to end their 25-year streak of playoff appearances and one of their players, Nyquist, just committed one of the most serious penalties of the season.
C’mon Red Wings, make Mr. Ilitch proud again.