13 May 2013

What Happened To Your Flying V?

It's in the books. The Red Wings defeat the Ducks and move on to round two to face Chicago. Quite honestly, I was stoked that the Wings got the Ducks in round one. I thought it was a good match-up for the boys to get their playoff feet under them, because it would have been a hell of a lot harder to figure this shit out against the Hawks. Now they can take this confidence into round two against Chicago.

A few thoughts on the Ducks. Maybe if Boudreau had changed Geztlaf, Perry, and Teemu's diapers more often, they wouldn't be crying so much. Poopy diapers make it hard to skate I would imagine. Saku Koivu shall be known as The Lesser Koivu henceforth. He is the Baltic and Mediterranean of Koivus. Selanne has to retire this year. It's science. The ageless one has extended his playing career by drinking protein shakes consisting of the harvested hypothalamus of Dick Clark and extract of Betty White, both items of which there are limited supply.The last sands of the hourglass have come trickling down Benjamin Button. Corey Perry. You sir, are a giant walking, talking turd. The best part of the post game last night was during the handshake line and Perry ever so sweetly embraces Todd Bertuzzi. And if you play that part in slo-mo and can read lips, you see him whisper into Todd's ear, "please don't kill me sir". Etem...fuck you, you're good. Escape while you can before you become douche-infected. Getzlaf, you are a perfect example of the term, craptain. I don't know what you think the C on your sweater stands for, but I am pretty sure it doesn't stand for cry. Of which you do a shit-ton. You and Crosby should have a Whine-Off For Charity event using old school yo mama rules. Have fun golfing you guys.

On to the Red Wings. I will pull a politician and totally flip-flop my position on Abdelkader. Me, along with so many other Wing fans (according to my sources which is only half remembering tweets through a drunken haze) were not a fan of him being on the top line. It was an excruciating process watching him develop into a top 6 guy. One huge improvement in his game is that he didn't impale someone's head on a flailing stick which seemed to happen every other game last year. I guess hard work does pay off. Not at my job. Hard work means I get more hard work.  Franzen. Shot blocker. Hustler. Defensively responsible. Whaaaa? That's a big difference from the beginning of the season where I was constantly screaming, "Franzen you lazy motherfucker, MOOOOOVE". Here's something I thought I would never be saying, "Thank god Ericsson is on the ice". He has been solid all season. I think Wings fans are more critical of the D because we compare them to one of the best defenseman ever, especially because we still expect to see #5 step out on the ice for his shift. I am still not sold on Colaiacovo. He did things last night that made me go, "ummmm...what was that exactly". Quincey. I just shake my head. Smith. I'm so, so sorry you are paired with Quincey, but everyone has to overcome handicaps and so can you.

The rookies. I like them. A lot. Questioning my sexual identity a lot. I don't think the Ducks were prepared to deal with this fast creative line. Nyquist has the moves. Brunner has the shot. Andersson has...really good manners? No, he is responsible. And a good defensive forward on a line in which if Nyquist and Brunner feel like makin' bacon, he's there to cover.

Our captain. Hank. Henred Letoberg. All other teams dream of white, they dream of red, but can't find a Zetterman. He willed this team into the playoffs. He willed this team to a first round series win. He increased my sperm count ten-fold. His on ice leadership is Yzermanesque. You see that gleam in his eyes that says, "fuck this, we are winning this game. Come with me into the trenches boys". He has looked in top form all year. Pavel. Datsyuk has done things this year where I just point at the tv and say, "did you see that?" His grand larceny was in full effect last night. Those three steals in one shift, are you kidding me? The will and resolve of those two has been awesome to watch.

Filppula, you still owe us all for that dumbass doink pass behind the net. You want 5 mil, then earn it. Cleary's play reminds of DJ Lance's dancing from Yo Gabba Gabba. It's this odd controlled chaos. I sometimes expect him to somehow explode out of his skates up into the netting, land in front of the goalie to have the puck ricochet off of his nuts America's Funniest Home Videos style and end up with a goal. But I will take that goal.

So now it's on to round 2. How many times will coach Q transform into Yosemite Sam? How many girls will Patrick Kane choke and pee on? How many time will Eddie O-face tell the national audience that the Red Wings are really good at cheating? Only time will tell.

Postlogue-Oregon WI.

A solitary figure sits on his back porch of his country home. He stares down at the two pieces of paper sitting in front of him on his patio table. One is a photograph. The other, which he picks up, is an offer sheet. As the tears start to roll down his face, they hit the paper making the ink run. He now knows what could have been. He looks over at the photo and his rage begins to build. "Fuck you Zach Parise, you did this to me". Ryan Suter drops the Red Wings offer sheet to the ground and screams to the heavens, "WHYYYYYY?!?"

Haha. Suck it Suter. As the old knight in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade said, You choose...poorly.

Let's Go Wings

18 April 2013

I wrote something.

You know what's even worse than coming back to blogging after a multiyear hiatus and finding that most of the shit on your site is ANCIENT HISTORY (holy fuck, a Derek Meech tag?!) and that in your absence, Blogger has finally reached roughly the mid-year 2002 level of technological prowess?

Waking up to a world in which with less than two weeks to go in the season, the Columbus Blue Jackets are in the playoffs and the Detroit Red Wings are not.

Fuck. Me.

How is this real life?

Or is it actually real life?  I've long suspected that instead of believing we're going to die and THEN go to hell, maybe we're already in hell.  Not HELL hell, like for serial murderers and puppy kickers and Pol Pot and the entire membership of the Westboro Baptist Church, but the good part of hell, for people who are semi-shitty and/or too fun to kick it for all eternity in heaven.  And maybe we've all had our fun in Good Hell for long enough, and now something actually shitty has to happen.  You knew the carefree, free-for-all, whiskey-chugging, circle-jerking shenanigans had to end at some point.  Let's all just reflect on the good times.

Twenty-one years' worth of 'em.

That's a long time.  For many of us, it encompasses the majority or even the totality of our hockey fandom.  The last time the Wings missed the playoffs, I was four.  Danny DeKeyser was in diapers.  Chris Chelios was ushering in the 1990s by celebrating his 1,990th year on Planet Earth.

And now, with just a handful of games remaining for the Wings to scratch and claw their way through to a bottom rung playoff spot, it may soon be all over.  That's what many of us are thinking, anyway.  "It" will be a thing of the past -- the Glory Days, the Dynasty, the certainty that while other teams' fortunes may ebb and flow, Hockeytown's is always on the upswing because The Detroit Way never falters.

Clearly, this season has not given us much to cheer about.  The Wings failed to make a splash during the last offseason, despite the unusually high-profile courting of free agents who would have unquestionably enhanced the roster's chances of success.  The injury bug yet again robbed us of several of our key players, including Darren Helm, and the impact from his absence cannot be overstated.  One of the most horrible sports cliches of all time -- your best players need to be your best players -- has been a steady reminder that when the players who are paid the big bucks to produce the big points fail to register numbers in the books, the loss column begins to outweigh the win column.  Those nagging criticisms from bloviating blowhards we all hate keep manifesting themselves in the results of Detroit's play on the ice:  Tired.  Uninspired.  Over the hill.

Last night's loss against Calgary is fairly comparable to other shitty games we've watched the Wings play this season, except with so much on the line, it's fair to assume that the Ozzie Switch would get flipped -- you know, the one that elevates you from your dogshit potential to your awesomesauce kinesis.  And it didn't happen.  Instead, we watched our team get dry-humped up and down the ice by a team that has been disadvantaged by just about every crappy thing that can happen to a team in the National Hockey League.  Yes, this is real life, and yes, it sucks ass.

I know, I know -- we as Red Wings fans have it good.  I know how the others see us.  Fans of other teams want to punch us in the throat when we gripe about our team being not as good as another, and then we make it to the second round of the playoffs.  They make fun of us for complaining over trifles when we have had the luxury of watching myriad Hall of Famers wear the Winged Wheel over the course of the past two decades.  But here's the deal, straight up:  I don't give a fuck about thinking about this from somebody else's perspective.  JFC, this is the Detroit Red Wings we're talking about here.  Our team.  We make the playoffs, period.  That's just the way it's done.

What happens next?  Playoffs or not, we all know the organization has some tough questions to ask itself.  They're the same questions we've been asking ourselves and one another.  How do we shore up our weak defense in the immediate future?  Are our top players really destined for the roles they have been assigned?  Is a coaching change the answer?  (And for those of us who believe it is, what would a different coach be able to accomplish differently than the current one with this roster?)  Why are we investing so much in broken-down dinosaurs when young kids with exciting potential have had to dust off the kneepads to convince someone for a spot in the lineup?  And, a more painful question for the immediate future:  What's worse -- missing the playoffs and snapping the streak or eking into the playoffs and facing CHI or ANA in the first round?  (Picture this:  An Axe Body Spray-ed, Fratellis-lovin' motherfucker holding up a broom at the Joe?  I know, RIGHT?! Now press the button on this Men in Black-style memory eraser, fast!)

I don't proclaim to know the answers to any of these questions.  As soon as I formulate a moderately intelligent thought, I end it with "Fuck it -- let's just see if we can manage a buyout for the entire team."  People far mathier than I can explain to you the potential financial comings and goings for our team.  People with memories like Beej can recite on cue who's available, who isn't, who has a NTC (I swear, TPL, if I could find the link to your chart, it would have totally gone there).

As for me, I'm just a spoiled, whiny, bitchy, babycrying Red Wings fan who feels THISCLOSE to having a Grade A meltdown if the Wings' season ends on April 27.  In Texas.  Which I'm 13% sure might be Actual Hell.

Over the next ten days, there will be a lot of nail-biting and Xanax-popping.  Definitely some double shots to take the edge off.  Maybe even sex with hobos to relieve some of the tension.  (What?  Don't say you've never considered it...)  We care so much about this team, we're willing to ride the rollercoaster until we fly off the rails and crash into a brick wall.  Because we know that even when we crash, we get back up and keep on going.  Draft Lottery, FTMFW!