12. I’ll start with the obvious: The Wings need to find a way to win this game.
11. Mattias Ritola is making his playoff debut in place of the injured Patrick Eaves and useless Jason Williams (Who?). This is exciting and terrifying all at once. How is that going to work out for the Wings?
10. The Datsyuk line can’t afford to get taken advantage of defensively like they were on Tuesday. That was just ugly.
9. Powerplays have been few and far between this series, but the Wings haven’t done a good enough job capitalizing on them when they do come their way. Special teams have been crucial in every single game all playoffs long.
8. Jimmy needs to settle down and stop trying to do too much. People have been criticizing him, but they’re forgetting that he’s a rookie. It just feels like he's been trying to win the games by himself, and his being too aggressive has led to some goals. Just make the saves as they come, and let the team play defense in front of you, Jimmy.
7. Again, STAY OUT OF THE BOX!!!
6. Capitalize on mistakes when San Jose makes them. It seems like they’ve found a way to put the puck in the net every time the Wings make a mistake. The Wings need to turn the tables if they want to have a shot at crawling out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves.
5. This is the equivalent of a Game Seven. Start strong. Finish strong. (And, you know, don’t forget about the middle of the game either...)
4. Win faceoffs. It makes it a heck of a lot easier to play the puck possession game we know and love.
3. Andreas Lilja is back in the lineup on defense. Here’s hoping he can settle Ericsson down.
2. Zetterberg really stepped up his game on Tuesday. He and his line need to keep carrying the play to the Sharks’ top players.
1. Keep testing Nabokov. He hasn’t looked nearly as spectacular as a 3-0 series lead would indicate.
The Wings can still do this. The Sharks said it themselves: if any team can crawl out of a 3-0 hole, it’s the Wings. That being said, the version of the Wings we’ve seen for most of the playoffs won’t be able to do it. The post-Olympic streak Wings? If they start showing up, there’s a slim possibility. The NHL’s playoff slogan is “History will be made” after all. I hope for the sakes of all of the #redwingscommune members in attendance tonight that they don’t have to see a handshake line.