- The first period was some pretty boring hockey. Neither team looked like it was willing to take a risk, and play was pretty choppy.
- I was incredibly concerned when the Flames scored first, but the wings actually managed to rebound well from the goal. Too bad they weren't able to do that in the third period.
- Via WingsLive, Brett Lebda announced that he was Single. Get in line, ladies. I know you're interested. To be fair, he said that Darren Helm was also single.
- Pavel Datsyuk and Tomas Holmstrom came out of the Olympic break looking like guys with something to prove. I think that Homer staying home with his injury was one of the best things that could've happened for the Wings.
- The Wings' second goal came off of an absolutely classic Red Wing powerplay. There was tape-to-tape passing, a goal, and a Tomas Holmstrom screen for the ages. I miss seeing that on a regular basis.
- The Wings looked good during the second period, which gave me a sense of false hope for the outcome of the game. Naturally, the third period was a depressing let down.
- I'm more and more convinced every game that Henrik Zetterberg has something nagging that's hampering his play. Too bad there's no cushion in the standings that would allow the team to give him a couple of games off.
- Jarome Igninla hadn't scored on the Wings in his last 19 regular season games. The media made a big deal about this today, which naturally meant that he would break that streak during this game.
- The Wings only mustered four shots in the third period. That's unacceptable. Especially in a game as important as this one was.
- Nashville and Calgary both won tonight. This counts as a disaster. The Wings now find themselves outside of the playoff picture again.
1. Jimmy Howard has struggled a little since the Olympic break. The layoff seems to have left him a little rusty. Can he hold up in this key game against Calgary?
This loss certainly wasn't his fault, but he's still struggling with his rebounds. They're not nearly as bad as they were at the beginning of the season, but they've become an issue again since the break.
2. Datsyuk and Bertuzzi both missed practice today. Both are supposed to be ready to go on Tuesday, but if I've learned one thing from this season, it's that the worst-case scenario almost always happens. Will their nagging issues affect their play significantly? It would be a shame to see Datsyuk's post-Olympic tear suffer because of a flu bug.
Datsyuk didn't look like his illness slowed him down at all. I thought Bertuzzi had a pretty solid game as well. He wasn't spectacular, but he looked particularly good on the shift after he got out of the penalty box in the third.
3. Over the last little while, the Wings' powerplay has slowly started to become respectable. Will their special teams keep up the good work, or will one of them start to falter? In the recent past, either the PK or the powerplay seems to be strong, but not both at the same time.
Like I said before, the Wings' second powerplay was classic. The others? Not so much.
4. From what I read today, Jonathan Ericsson is going to be returning to the lineup tomorrow. How is he going to respond to his benching? Getting sat in favor of Brett Lebda has to be demoralizing for anybody, but especially a guy like Ericsson with his Adonis-like qualities.
I didn't really notice Ericsson very much during the game. For a defenseman like him, that's a very good thing. He managed to stay +/- neutral in 13 minutes of ice time tonight.
Cookies and Cupcakes for Tomas Holmstrom
Because I love him.
Henrik Zetterberg gets the Golden Facepalm
Yeah, I went there. There was something supremely frustrating about his blown chance early on. I can't quite explain why, and this is really tough for me because lord knows I love me some Z, but...I don't know. That one chance just made me shake my head.
What I learned:
Looking up at the top eight again isn't fun. At all.