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Young Red Wings approach 30-goal mark despite losing season

Forwards provide hope for future

Andreas Athanasiou of the Detroit Red Wings scores an empty net goal at 19:06 of of the third period against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on March 19, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Andreas Athanasiou of the Detroit Red Wings scores an empty net goal at 19:06 of of the third period against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on March 19, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings are six points out of last place in the NHL this season.

With eight games remaining on their schedule, the Red Wings are more-or-less a lock for a high draft lottery pick this summer.

However, a young group of forwards led by Dylan Larkin and Andreas Athanasiou is giving the team and fans hope for next season and beyond. Both Larkin and Athanasiou are approaching the 30-goal mark, something neither has accomplished in his relatively short NHL career.

Dylan Larkin #71 of the Detroit Red Wings skates against the Boston Bruins at Little Caesars Arena on November 21, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 3-2 in overtime. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Dylan Larkin #71 of the Detroit Red Wings skates against the Boston Bruins at Little Caesars Arena on November 21, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit won the game 3-2 in overtime. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Larkin leads the Red Wings with 64 points. Athanasiou has 49 points, but leads the team with 29 goals. Larkin is one back with 28 goals. If both were to reach 30 goals before this season ends, it would be the first time since 2008-09 that the Red Wings have had two 30-goal scorers.

In fact, that's how long it's been since any Red Wings player has reached the milestone. In that 2008-09 season Marian Hossa scored 40, Johan Franzen scored 34, Pavel Datsyuk scored 32 and Henrik Zetterberg scored 31.

Tyler Bertuzzi, Andreas Athanasiou and Anthony Mantha  of the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden on March 19, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Tyler Bertuzzi, Andreas Athanasiou and Anthony Mantha of the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden on March 19, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Right now, four of the top five points leaders for the Red Wings are all under the age of 25 -- Athanasiou is 24, Larkin is 22, Anthony Mantha (36 points) is 23, and Tyler Bertuzzi (35 points) is 23.

Here's what's left on the Red Wings schedule:

March 28, 2019 @ Buffalo (7 p.m.) 
March 29, 2019 vs. New Jersey (7:30 p.m.) 
March 31, 2019vs. Boston (7:30 p.m.) 
April 2, 2019vs. Pittsburgh (7:30 p.m.) 
April 4, 2019@ Pittsburgh (7 p.m.) 
April 6, 2019vs. Buffalo (7 p.m.) 

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