31 October 2011
So the Wings call up Nyquist. Is this the shot in the arm the team needs? Hopefully. People are wondering who is going to sit. I say sit someone who isn't scoring goals. All kidding aside, I see him fitting nicely on the 4th line. The instability there will probably be around for a while until something clicks. But seriously, someone needs to start scoring. I'm talking a nice fat 10 game point streak, because 1 goal a game isn't going to cut it. Being a bunch of defensive minded forwards is all well and good, but that's only if you are keeping the other team off of the board. Biscuit in the mother fucking basket please.
Will a fatter walleted Kronwall be a happier, scoring, body smashing machine? Again, hopefully. It would be nice to see more points coming in from the back end. And sir Ian White, time to clean your shit up. Figure out how you fit in this system before trying to do too much on a play and leaving the team out to dry. I don't know if the defense is overreacting to the low score output and are pinching when they shouldn't be, but it seems that there are a lot more odd man rushes or outright breakaways so far this year. So by all means pinch, but pinch smart.
Quite honestly, no one individual is playing consistently shitty this year. It's just easier to focus on one player's fuck-ups when there are no goals on the board. When it is a mediocre team effort, a mistake by someone is amplified. Hopefully the turnaround happens soon. Shit, I've used the word 'hopefully' entirely too much in this post. And as of this moment I'm no longer concerned about an even distribution of goals. I want someone to go on a tear. I want that someone to climb the leader boards. I want them to skate in, score with authority and finish it off with a good old DX crotch chop right in the goalie's face. (That last part won't happen because Red Wings players are classy where I am not). We are burning for a win. But we are really burning for a fucking curb-stomp of a win.
Now hopefully, (again with that word) @jennyquarx and I publicly shamed/coerced/guilt tripped the original Scrappy Octopus, Natalie, into doing a pre-game for the Wings/Wild match-up. If not, then I say to all of you, bombard her on the twitter to bring on the snark, for it has been far too long since she has graced this blog. Sorry Natalie, I'm fucking shameless.
LET'S GO WINGS
30 October 2011
We missed lasts nights game against the Wild due to a Halloween party we went to. Most people are saying be glad you missed it. Reading the other blogs, it sounds like it was a pretty poor outing by the boys in red and white. I followed the game on my phone, furiously hitting the refresh button, willing the score to change.
The panic button has been pressed by fans and it has been pressed hard. I am just as worried as the rest of you. People keep reminding me that it is early in the season and that the Wings will be fine. But I believe that these early season games are important. A good start balances out the slumps and streaks that every team deals with throughout the course of a season.
I'm not going to harp on the negatives. We've all flogged that horse plenty in the last four games. A lot of people are calling for a shake-up. And switching up lines is all well and good, but that seems more of a band-aid to me. What I think needs to happen is someone in that locker room needs to stoke the embers in the guts of each and every player into a raging inferno. They need to capture that proverbial lightning and bottle it. They need inspiration. They need to remember what it means to wear the winged wheel, that they play for one of the best franchises ever. It's time for them to step up and etch their names into the annals of hockey history.
You are a Red Wing. A team that fell from prominence only to rise from the ashes like the mythical phoenix and make the playoffs for twenty straight years. You have won four cups within that stretch, more than some teams have in their entire history. You have won against adversity in the past. Now that adversity raises it's ugly head you dig deep and find a way to slay that beast. We have seen you dedicate a season and win the Stanley Cup for a fallen comrade. We have seen you fight for each other as brothers gaining a sense of redemption with the beat down of Lemieux.
You have one of the greatest fan bases ever, many of whom I have met and now call friend. I have seen them step up and bring a fellow Wings blogger from Brasil. These same fans raised over twenty thousand dollars in two years for the Children's Hospital of Michigan. I am proud to be a part of this community, and we do it for you, Red Wings, the uniting factor of this community. We don the winged wheel in support of you. We are proud to be your fans. We know what you can do, so it starts now, the march to the 21st straight playoffs. Play your hearts out for the rest of the season, not for us but for yourselves, because we will be with you through thick and thin.
And as always, Let's go Wings
28 October 2011
If there is one thing that Roy has done well, it would be killing big dumb sharks. So if anybody knows of any good necromancers out there, give them a holler so they can resurrect Mr. Scheider to don the mantle of police chief, Martin C. Brody. Somebody is going to need to step up tonight and be a shark killer, (I'm looking at you Franzen). Z has been a little too quiet for my liking at the beginning of this season. If Hank is looking to inherit the 'C' after Lidstrom retires, then he has to start leading this team when they face adversity.
There is a trend I would like to see end this season. Quit making bad teams feel good about themselves. Also, you can quit letting rookies get their firsts of their NHL careers. Every time Ken or Mick announce that so-and-so hasn't scored in approximately seven years it seems that player scores against the Red Wings. Make these other teams hang their heads in shame as they make their way to a dark recess of the locker room to quietly sob with self loathing.
Besides the atrocious power play, another aspect of their game that has been lacking is-the breakout, because it hasn't been there. I don't know if there is some kind of side betting going on, but it seems as though their breakout consists of trying to hit the scoreboard. I don't know if they are trying to hit the opposing teams goal totals so they don't have to look at it, but guess what guys, those goals don't disappear.
All right. Here is a streak to keep going since they have dropped the last two-Jimmy is undefeated. Since aliens have abducted shutout Conklin and replaced him with Swiss cheese Conklin, Howard will have to shoulder the goaltending load. And he needs to be rock solid. Which Jimmy will show up? I'm hoping for Jimmah, and not distracted-new-dad-Jimmy.
Helm, Bertuzzi, and Holmstrom are the only players who are either even or on the plus side for the last two games. The top line hasn't been shutting down other teams top lines. Maybe Babs should be looking more for match-ups rather than different line combinations. I will have to pay close attention to where the lines are matching up tonight to see if this is true. Maybe the top line could jump start their scoring if matched up with weaker lines.
Besides the weak scoring chances and no offensive zone pressure the last two games, I do put a lot of the blame on Conklin's shoulders. He let in some bad goals. It's hard to gain momentum when a goal gets let in from the parking lot or you forget that the posts are your best friends.
I realize that this post seems like I'm Debbie Downer, but unfortunately that's where a fans mind goes when you are used to cheering for a winning team. And tonight I want the Wings to beat the Sharks. I am willing it from the very core of my existence.
Now everyone together-Let's Go Red Wings *Clap Clap clapclapclap*
23 October 2011
I am not good at doing post game write ups after a loss. I definitely can't write them right after because it takes me until the next day to uncurl from the fetal position. The title of this post comes from @jennyquarx, who at the end of a bad sports night, turns to me and says, "Sometimes sports hurt your soul". Absolutely.
We had some important games going last night in our household. Obviously, the Red Wings/Caps, and we also had the Spartans/Badgers football game. I congratulate you MSU fans, and to the sports gods....Fuck hail Marys. The ending of that game was a butt-clincher. It's hard to watch people celebrate on twitter, be it friend or foe. While nobody did anything to us per se, I did notice some people being shitty to others. There is a line between good natured ribbing and being a cunt-ass-fuck hiding behind your keyboard. Don't say something you wouldn't say directly to someone's face. That's probably one of my biggest pet peeves. Even bigger than dipshits saying Lindstrom.
Now on to the Red Wings loss. I don't have the correct words to express the feelings I had during this game. That was pretty brutal, but like many people said on the twitters, better a brutal loss now instead of at the end of the season or during the playoffs. There was a moment during the beginning of the first period where the Wings were buzzing around the offensive zone, cycling, shooting, and putting up some good pressure. That was the only highlight, other than the Kronwall goal. The Caps didn't even have to play awesome hockey last night, they just had to capitalize on Red Wing mistakes, which they did very proficiently. I'm not going to break down each goal. If you want that info go here for J.J.'s CSSI analysis, http://www.wingingitinmotown.com/2011/10/23/2507242/cssi-analysis-red-wings-1-capitals-7 It should actually be CSI analysis because last nights game was a crime scene.
I never knew that J.J. was trained as a wizard because coming up with those numbers boggles my mind. I don't grasp the formulas. Hell, I still think E=MC Hammer. But let us apply a little CSSI analysis to me as a fan.
half-minus: I pushed the luck of my newly purchased Target Red Wings shirt, which was 2-0. I should know better.
It's going ok until Washington's second goal where I incur a double-minus. One for not forgiving Emmerton his rookie mistake, and the second for saying "Fucking-A" in front of my kid.
I earn a plus for honoring Murph and making hot dogs for dinner, but then getting a half-minus for getting mustard on my shorts.
I get another full minus for not making a voodoo doll of Mike Green.
I get a plus for saying we can get back into this when Kronwall scores the power play goal.
A minus three comes next. Two for having "Budd Lynch goal" enter my thoughts. And another minus for getting so pissed at Conklin for giving up a goal from the Zamboni parking garage.
A big minus five for considering turning it to Nick Jr. and seeing which episode of iCarly is on.
Another minus for saying, "Come on guys, what the fuck are you doing?" at least 11 times.
Tack on another minus for searching the interwebs to find the perfect Lolcats to sum up my feelings.
So I come in at a sucky minus 12. Way to go Zac. That was a tough one to watch but hopefully it was a learning experience for the team. At least it gives them plenty of video to show what they need to button up when going against a very solid team.
I think I need to go lay down now. And for the next game, Let's Go Wings
22 October 2011
Good thing nobody listened to my, "Ahhhh, it's a trap", bullshit in my last post. The Blue Jackets are not playing good hockey and their single solitary point is like a single solitary tear trickling down Rick Nash's face. I think a Freaky Friday scenario may have happened and the spirit of Joe Thornton inhabited Nash's body, because Ricky was getting a little bit douchey last night. I liked that Hudler dropped him to the ice with a lovely single-leg takedown. See everybody, MMA training does pay off.
The power play was shitting glitter last night. And so was the Mule. And the Legolas of the NHL, Valtteri Filppula, had a nice and sneaky 4 point night. That earned him player of the night from the NHL Network. Darren Helm had another awesome non-point night. He was all over the ice last night. I think he even ran up to the DJ booth to spin in between shifts. But please Helm, no more trying to block shots with your face....because you are too beautiful to me. I wish all of the little things he did translated to fantasy points though, because he is on my team.
A bizarre highlight for me last night was when Ken was mentioning the two tickets, two drinks, two hot dogs deal, my kid, channeling his inner Murph said, "Mmmmmm. Hot dogs."
So tonight we have a battle of the last of the unbeatens. The Caps are 6-0-0 against the 5-0-0 Red Wings. This is a tough test. Alex 'Alfred E. Newman' Ovechkin is hopefully hampered by Datsyuk all night. If they play responsible hockey I think they squeak this one out over the Caps.
Or maybe Ericsson will just going around punching people. He looked like one of the big headed fight bosses from Double Dragon. Another bonus of Ericsson fighting is it means he is off the ice for 5 minutes.
Saddle up people, to the victor goes all of the fortune and glory Dr. Jones
And as always, Let's go Red Wings
21 October 2011
Sweet zombie Jeebus has this been a way too long of a fucking break. I feel like I had just started a season of NHL 95 on my Sega Genesis and one of my drunk roommates hit the reset button, making me start the pre-season all over again. It seems pretty ridiculous that the schedule makers that be thought this was a good idea. With my tin foil hat firmly in place, blocking out the evil brain waves of Gary Bettman, I'm able to theorize that this was done on purpose to overload the Wings at the end of the season. Shit, other teams have already played twice as many games.
This long stretch really fucks up my inept blogging skills. I've lost my flow. I want game action to write about. I don't want to write about an IR's recreation of Scenes From a Mall. Although I am happy to hear about your latest enjoyment of a Cinnabon purchase, or your heartbreaking dilemma of where to eat at the food court. (Yes sir, there are sooo many choices.) Except I don't know if Steak Escape counts as fine dining, even if you do have a lit candelabra and a cello serenade.
See, I'm totally writing fake shit now. Well, half fake. You can guess which half is fake.
So we finally get a game tonight, in fact we get a little back-to-back action. It's Columbus tonight, and I hope they wear their third jersey 1950's soda fountain uniforms. (Even though it's an away for them). That way, when Carter's foot starts bothering him he can don a paper hat and serve us delicious vanilla phosphates.
When I roll my 12 sided die it bolsters my hyper awareness giving me an extra +8, allowing me to sense a trap up ahead. That's what sucks about these games after a long break, they have trap written all over them. Couple that with the Blue Jackets really needing a win here, the Red Wings will have to be on their toes. Hopefully they worked on their power play on this hiatus, which seems to be the consensus amongst Wings fans as needing much improvement.
So what did @Flapjack_McZap and @jennyquarx of Clan MacRostie do this week while the Red Wings were idle. Well, we met up with a fellow Wings fan who happened to be in Madison for a few days. Especially after H2H2, we take every opportunity to catch up with a Wings fan if they are in the vicinity. Ryan, you are a gentleman and a scholar. A lover of fine beers and tasty metal riffs as well as burning a mean fret board yourself. If Ericsson does not give up a breakout pass to the opposition's wheel house for a one-timer this season, you will win his jersey. I don't know if that's a reward or punishment. Plus, we also met a cool Kings fan. Jose, you are an encyclopedia of NHL knowledge. Nice job stumping three Wings fans with some Red Wings trivia.
I will see everyone tonight, (interwebally speaking of course) in various spots, mostly the twitters and at times, the Winging It in game thread, which takes me all intermission to catch up.
Let's go Red Wings. Don't let Columbus spoil the undeats like the Niners did to the Lions.
14 October 2011
I don't know if Jimmy's performance was spurred on by Conklin's shutout from the game before, but he needed a nice game like this. Sure, there was that blast off his shoulder that went up and over, but triple zeros negated that. And there was that other dinger off of the pipe, but that's the way the bounces went for Jimmy last night.
Speaking of the no-time-left-no-goal, how long before O'Halloran starts announcing no goals in Soup Nazi fashion shouting, "NO GOAL FOR YOU."
I think Franzen is feeling pretty good, talking about his knee specifically. He's been making his old school quick cut to the net with soft hands move.
Hudler does not want to hear any more of this trade bait bullshit. Plus the fact that nobody even offered the Wings a carton of Lucky Strikes and a fully stamped Subway card for him. With his off season MMA training he looks to be raising his game from Juicy Couture to Randy Couture.
Bertuzzi's pass to Abdelkader was a beaut. Having Datsyuk skate into the offensive zone attracting 15 Canucks really helped open up the ice for Abs. And how about Abdelkader's bitch slapping of Lapierre last night? He should have thrown in a donkey punch for good measure. I liked how Sally Lapierre pretended to fight back after the refs stepped in.
Both of the penalties to Bertuzzi were very weak at best. At least he doesn't draw further attention by putting his hands in the air proclaiming innocence before the whistle is blown. He just starts jawing Yosemite Sam style at the refs on his way to the box.
I really can't say much about the power play because nothing much happens on the power play. I don't see why they are having these pp problems when a lot of their 5 on 5 play has been dominating. Like Mickey pointed out last night, they are being too cute. They keep trying to force passes into a crowd. Even if the pass connects, you are trapped in a phone booth, and not everyone is Datsyuk.
One of my favorite moments from last night is when they had a graphic up during the pregame which had the ginger twins pictures side by side with their stats below. Then Mickey says, "That's Sedin on the left". Oh really Mick. Then who's that on the right? Sedin 2.0, a weird alien clone, or a robot sent from the future to protect John Conner? Your guess would be as good as any because the jury is still out on that one.
Ericsson didn't poop on anyone's head so I guess that's a good thing. He still makes way too many bonehead plays that just make your sphincter clench. He made a couple of those last night. We will all need O-ring transplants by the end of the season.
That's all I got. It's a nice start to the season. Work out some of the bugs, especially on the power play and then keep it rollin'.
Later folks. (hahas)
08 October 2011
Last night was a very nice start for the Red Wings, well minus the third period. The third wasn't too bothersome what with the outcome, but it just shows you can't let up off of the gas and coast.
First goal was a fantastic rifle shot from the Thunderchief. It was a sweet pass from Helm that sprung Bertuzzi. The Hudler from Datsyuk goal almost made me choke on my awesome homemade chicken pot pie. Emmerton does not want to sit in the press box or go to Grand Rapids. Lidstrom's goal was totally sick. "Hello inexperienced kid, I'm just going to do this, and a little of that, and oh, watch this, whoooop....goal."
Now over at http://theproductionline.us/ Chris Hollis made a point about Holmstrom being put on the fourth line. And he is correct. Sometimes I felt that when he was on either of the top two lines, everyone had to wait for him to get into the play and then plant his butt in his office. If Babs needs to switch things up this year, I have the feeling that he is going to get Eaves paired up with Zetterberg and Filppula. Last year and this pre-season, whenever Eaves and Zetterberg were out on the ice together, it just looked like they clicked.
The third line was shittin' glitter last night.
Now they face the Grammalanche. Let's hope the boys keep it rolling and smoke those guys. If there is a team I love to see the Wings beat, it would be them. Or the Ducks, or the Hawks, or the Penguins. I would like to see Howard play a solid 60 minutes, but that means everyone has to play a solid 60. And hopefully the power play looks a bit better.
Let's go Red Wings
07 October 2011
Yay. That sums up my thoughts on the start of the new hockey season. I know, I'm super profound. I could have said, "Oh Yeaaaah", but I fear that the Kool-Aid man would come bursting through my wall. That always bugged me about those old Kool-Aid commercials. All this kid wanted was some nice liquid refreshment and now he has to explain to his parents how this giant fucking hole in their house happened to appear. Good luck trying to convince them that a giant talking beverage pitcher did it. They are more likely to think that you were breaking bad in the shed behind the house and drove the family station wagon through the living room in a meth induced rampage.
Wow. One sentence in and I already went off on a fucked up tangent. That's either not too shabby or, shit, am I out of practice.
Since we live outside of the Detroit viewing area, we had to accept the scraps fed to us by the NHL Network. The one thing that I took from the pre-season is that the kids look good. There are a lot of them that look really hungry to make the big club. And the ones who aren't there yet get to simmer with the Griffins. There is a ton of great potential in the cupboard and the call ups will make for an exciting season.
The Smith hit was unfortunate and shows his sometimes over-exuberance. He was just as passionate as a Badger. Let's just get these suspension games out of the way and move forward. I don't know about anybody else, but I was pretty pleased with the Brunnstrom try out. This could turn out to be another one of those great 'player from the scrap pile Red Wings' stories.
Way down the road and we will look back at this post and note that I said it here. Nyquist and Jurco will be the Euro-twins of the future.
The biggest story in the last week has got to be the scoop of all scoops. Somebody broke a story about a player nobody ever even heard of that has been in the Wings training camp all along. Nystrom. He doesn't even have a first name. He's like Prince or Sting. Kudos goes out to this crew and their superb fact checking skills. When this kid wins the Calder we should all pitch in and send these guys Nystrom jerseys as a reward for their diligence to the facts they put forth in the blogging and podcast community.
All right then. Let us get this shit started. In fabulous HD this year. Plus free Center Ice thanks to @jennyquarx's magical phone skills. Telemarketer types do not stand a chance against her.
And last but not least, go Red Wings.