Wings know they need to stay out of the penalty box

DETROIT — The Wings know they’re going to have to do a better job of staying out of the penalty box, but going 7-for-7 on the PK was a nice.

“I think every year we think they’re going to call it tight at the beginning of the year and then it eases up,” Drew Miller said. “I don’t think the refs think that way, but for some reason that’s how it seems to shake out the way. We can’t take that many penalties, especially the 5-on-3 ones, going down two men is tough.”

Buffalo had a pair of 5-on-3 power plays on Wednesday, one in each of the first two periods, lasting all of two minutes and 22 seconds and could only muster two shots on goal.

“The positive side, I thought out PK did well,” Miller said. “From (Jimmy Howard) to the D to all the forwards that were a part of it we were systems strong and that’s kind of how we finished last year. We bought into playing a certain way and it’s carried over to this year. It was definitely a positive thing.

“Last year St. Louis I think scored four power play goals on us in the opener and our percentage was killed after that game,” Miller continued. “It was nice to get that first game going seven-for-seven and build off that to keep the percentage up. We all take pride in that. We want to be at the top of the league.”

The Blues were 4-for-5 with the man advantage in last year’s opener.

“It was a nightmare,” Howard said of last season’s 6-0 loss to St. Louis. “Last year was a different scenario where it was just thrown together. We progressed and got a lot better.

“It was a great start off to the year,” Howard continued. “The past couple of years we could have been a lot better on the penalty kill, but it was a great start last night. This time of the year is when they call it tight. They’re going to call everything to keep the sticks down. You just have to play through it and keep your stick down on the puck.”

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