Detroit — Several days in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and soaking up the sunshine appear to have the desired effect on Red Wings forward Robby Fabbri.
Fabbri had a goal and assist Friday in Friday’s 4-2 loss to the New York Rangers, the first game back since the eight-day All-Star break for the Wings.
The game was a continuation of the steady production Fabbri has provided the Wings since arriving in a trade from St. Louis for forward Jacob de la Rose.
Fabbri has 11 goals and 25 points in 35 games, ranking fourth on the Wings in scoring.
“It’s been a good start,” said Fabbri of his time with the Wings. “I’m happy with getting the opportunity they were able to give me. Team-wise we just have to keep working and I’m going to do the same myself to get better and help this team as much as I can.
“It’s been tough but the mindset has been the same throughout the whole season. That’s all we can do right now, keep working on the things we need to work on and stay in the right mindset, and keep playing for each other.”
Joining a new team in the middle of a season has never been easy, but Fabbri has found this particular adjustment smooth.
“They made it pretty decent here, coming over, it’s a great group of guys,” Fabbri said. “Every guy on this team says it, and it’s true. They’ve made it easy coming over, the coaching staff and the guys on the team.”
Fabbri, 23, struggled to find playing time with the Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues after two knee surgeries.
But that hasn’t been an issue with the Wings, who have been searching for offense all season, and saw in Fabbri a player who has put up points in the NHL and was searching for a larger role.
“When we traded for him we thought there was talent there to be a guy who could add some offense,” coach Jeff Blashill said. “He’s been given a good opportunity and he’s done a good job with it overall. He’s smart offensively, has good skill. He had to get back to getting comfortable playing as tenacious as he needs to play at his size.
“He’s not a real big guy (5-foot-10, 190 pounds) and he’s not real fast, so he has to play real competitive. When you go through a number of injuries, sometimes you lose some of that and get cautious. He can’t play cautious and he’s done a pretty good job of that.
“It’s not easy every night when you’re giving up size in a matchup to be as tenacious and competitive as he has to be to have a real good impact. But he understands he has to be ultra-competitive every night and that consistency is growing.”
The Red Wings have done their share of losing this season. But more often than not, the effort has been there for 60 minutes despite a large amount of defeats.
Friday’s third-period rally was the latest example.
“We’ve had a good group that way, we’ve kept playing,” Blashill said. “Dylan (Larkin) is a big piece of that. Dylan has no quit in him at all. He’s in a lot of ways one of the big leaders on this team and guys follow suit.”
Blashill has maintained the mentality of keeping looking forward the entire season.
“We want to keep getting better, we want to make sure that every shift matters,” Blashill said. “We’ve had a pretty good mentality of next shift, next game and we did a good job of that (Friday).”