Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wings 0, Blues 1: Post Game Snipes...

  • I missed the majority of the game tonight thanks to a variety of unfortunate circumstances. I guess I didn’t miss a whole lot though. You know, something like a goal…
  • Cleary managed to get hurt during the five minutes of the game I was able to watch. This was exactly what I needed to make my day more enjoyable. At first I was hoping he just got the wind knocked out of him, but I don’t recall seeing him on the ice afterward. In his post-game interview, Babcock said he was being tended to in the training room. I don’t know what that means, but the way things have been going this season, it’s probably a serious upper-body injury that’ll keep him out of the lineup for three months.
  • Nick Lidstrom apparently hit two goalposts tonight. Seriously.
  • The Wings second line tonight was Bertuzzi-Abdelkader-Cleary. Yeah, I said “second.” Not fourth. This is really what it’s come down to.
  • According to the box score, the Wings had six powerplays. And scored on exactly zero of them. That’s just not acceptable. The fact that the PK killed off four penalties is a small consolation, but it doesn’t make up for the fact that the powerplay couldn’t find a way to finish.
  • The box score also tells me that they had 42 shots on net. And scored on exactly zero of them.
  • I saw the replay of that no-goal call when Bertuzzi and Rafalski knocked it in after it was covered by Conklin’s pad. I would have loved it if they let the goal stand, but I’m not particularly surprised by it. It was probably the right call, and even if it wasn’t, it was far less obnoxious than some of the other ones we’ve seen recently. Or maybe I’m just too jaded at this point…
GP Answers:
1. Abdelkader will be centering the second line tonight, which is not bad for a guy who was supposed to be in Grand Rapids this season. He’s played very well over the last stretch of games. How will he look after getting bumped up to the scoring lines?
I don’t know. The five minutes of play that I did see didn’t tell me much. There wasn't a whole lot of scoring going on, though.

2. Datsyuk and Lidstrom got points on Sunday against the Rangers. Will finding the scoresheet wake the two of them up from their offensive slumps?
Well, that’s a big, fat no.

3. Jimmy Howard has created a huge, giant, enormous goalie controversy here in Hockeytown!!! Now that he’s the shiny, new, official, media-anointed starter how will he look tonight? Having to ask that question every night is no fun (but to be fair, I always ask the same of Ozzie), but he still terrifies me in net sometimes.
Guy let in one goal all game. You can’t expect much more from a goalie in the NHL. The Blues didn’t have a ton of shots, but he made enough saves to give the Wings a chance to win. When you only give up one goal, your team ought to at least get a point out of the game.

4. The Wings haven’t exactly been tearing it up at home recently (1-4-1 in their last 6 home games). Can they turn things around and make the home crowd happy?
No. It turns out that they couldn’t even score a goal. There was nothing to celebrate at all. They're now 1-5-1 in their last seven (got it right this time!), including three shutouts.

Cookies and Cupcakes for Jimmy Howard
I don’t know if anyone else was on their game tonight, but Howard only gave up one goal tonight, and I’m of the belief that no starting goalie who limits the opposition to a single goal deserves to take a loss.

All of the skaters get the Golden Facepalm
Okay, Ty Conklin played well tonight. That's no excuse though. Even with all of the injuries, the Wings still have enough talent that they should be able to put at least one puck in the net every night. Three shutouts at home in the last seven games? Inexcusable. Unacceptable. Disgusting. I don't care what adjective you want to use, that just can't happen.

What I learned:
The fun never stops during Finals week. Never ever.

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