- The game got off to kind of a rocky start as the Wings took a penalty 11 seconds in. Fortunately, the Wings were able to kill it off.
- Datsyuk was the first Wing not named Todd Bertuzzi to score in over 4 games. This is a truly horrifying stat.
- That “tripping” call against Filppula late in the third period was a joke in every sense of the word. There is absolutely no way in the universe that that was a trip. Maybe, maybe a hook if you really want to be ridiculous, but I was always under the impression that tripping involved taking out a player’s feet…or at least involve actually being responsible for knocking the opposing player down.
- I think it’s fairly apparent that the Wings’ PK is more of a scoring threat than their powerplay right now.
- We had a Blue Moon on New Year’s Eve. Ville Leino also scored. Just saying…
- The Wings’ PK, which has been lights out since Thanksgiving, allowed two powerplay goals last night. It’s hard to complain about that though, since it’s been so good recently.
- Craig Anderson was upset about Ville Leino's goal (although, to be fair, it has to be kind of embarrassing to be the guy who finally lets the loafer score). Here's a super high-quality video of him whining about the call. Adrian Dater is involved. You've been warned.
1. 2009 hasn’t exactly been good to Wings fans. I think we’re all looking forward to 2010 and the joyous frolicking that surely awaits us in the new year. Before the ball drops in Times Square, though, the Wings have one more game to win. Can they send this less than stellar year off with a bang?
Yes. I still haven’t seen the whole game, but the Wings appeared to throw together a solid effort. I’m beyond ready for 2010 to start bringing good things.
2. The rivalry’s dead and yadda yadda yadda. I don’t care. I still take great pleasure from beating the Avs. Will the Wings pretty please end the year with a good, old-school beat down? It would take me right back to my childhood in the ‘90s.
Despite Holmstrom’s 500 penalties on the night, there wasn’t any nastiness going on. Not that I expected there to be much, but a girl can dream.
3. This is the last home game before the Wings begin a 5-game roadtrip out west (and randomly to New York at the end…NHL scheduling win for sure). During that trip, some key guys are slated to come back from injury. Can the guys in the lineup tonight hold down the fort until reinforcements come (see what I did there?)?
I didn’t really realize that I asked the same question 8 times in a row. Obviously, the boys were able to get things together, and…well, you get the idea.
4. When is Nick Lidstrom going to score a goal again? It’s been the better part of a decade since he put one in the net, and I’m going to copy/paste this into every GP until he does.
Not last night.
5. Patrick Eaves is out with the flu tonight (thanks, Rafalski), which pretty much negates our theory about it being caused by lack of hair to cover one’s head. As a result, Leino is going to find his way back into the lineup out of necessity (this is becoming a trend). If ever there was a time for him to come back into the game looking like an NHL player, I would think that this would be it. Will he be able to reclaim his roster spot from Ritola with a strong game tonight?
Well, he came up with a huge goal in the third period. It took a video review to make sure that it stood, but it was a good goal, and a beautiful tip-in. I still think Ritola played a little better, but Leino showed up where it counts—the scoresheet. Apparently Brad May is now day-to-day with a lower body injury from last night (Seriously? More injuries? I don’t care that it’s just May.), so it’s pretty likely that Leino will be getting another shot tomorrow.
Cookies and Cupcakes for Darren Helm
Two shorthanded goals in the New Year’s Eve game? Even though one was an empty-netter, that’s spectacular. Over the course of the season, he’s created approximately 7,394 breakaways or partial breaks for himself with his ridiculous speed. We were all just waiting for him to finally finish one of them. Not only did he finish, but he finished with style.
Tomas Holmstrom gets the Golden Facepalm
At one point during the third period, he missed what could’ve been an easy tip-in because he was too busy taking a cross-checking penalty in the crease. I was pretty annoyed with that one.
What I learned:
In the month of December, the Wings’ scored 4 powerplay goals. They also scored 3 short handed goals. When your powerplay is almost tied offensively by your PK, you know you have some issues. On the other hand, they only allowed 5 goals on the penalty kill, which is pretty darn impressive.