Red Wings – Predators Zombie-Blogging

I realize I never do any fun blogging anymore. Tonight I’m going to try to change that, doing a zombie-blog of the Wings-Preds tilt.

I missed the game live, having had a couple soccer games tonight, so since this isn’t a live-blog but it’s close, so I’ll call it a zombie-blog.

Most people who do this are funny. I’m not. We’ll see how this works.

11:49 PM – Just now getting underway. It’s like a West Coast game if you’re talking about the west coast of Alaska. Or Maui, which is probably more likely given the NHL’s expansion/relocation history.

11:51 PM – Mikael Samuelsson starts with Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg. I’m insane but I want to see Tomas Kopecky out with them.

11:53 – Hand pass gives me time to mention that this zombie-blog is brought to you by Gatorade, makers of energy drinks and Sidney Crosby commercials.

11:55 – Darren Helm goes to the box. I didn’t see a penalty, whatever.

12:07 – I love Babcock going off on the refs. For once, Andreas Lilja didn’t deserve it.

12:11 – Scott Nichol just saved a goal. Great defensive play. Too bad.

12:13 – You’re kidding me. Giveaway by Niklas Kronwall, Alexander Radulov takes it into the corner and throws it back out front, off Kronwall and Hasek and in. When was the last time the Wings had one like that?

12:16 – End of the first. Yawn. Nothing too exciting, aside from Nichol’s save. Even the lone goal was a boring play.

12:19 – Kronner makes amends. As Redmond says, an awful goal to give up. Ellis just missed it.

12:24 – Chelios with a seeing-eye shot, no idea how that got through. Out comes Ellis. I’m not sure I’d do that.

12:28 – Starting to get chippy. That always worries me against Nashville.

12:29 – Bad clear by Nashville and Brian Rafalski rifles it into the top of the net. Power play goal. Very nice. Ken and Mickey making a big deal about three goals from the Detroit defense.

12:30 – Huge stop by Dom. I hope that means he’s feeling comfortable.

12:52 – Things had been kinda boring but now we’ve got a five-on-five scrum and the goalies yelling. Kind of surprising that no real fights came of that. Maybe not, how often does Nashville actually fight?

12:55 – Hamhuis goes after Zetterberg to end the second. At this point, Nashville’s not looking to make a point. You make a point by fighting the other team’s fighters. This is just thugging it up.

1:00 – The Wings blow a long five-on-three and Nashville comes right back to score. Bad goal for Dom to give up, he came too far off the post. And of course it’s off Kronwall’s stick.

1:04 – Tie game. Dom made a series of saves on the Nashville power play but couldn’t stop the last one.

1:07 – Huge save by Hasek on Bochenski but what was with the giveaway that led to that chance? Replay shows Lebda couldn’t corral it.

1:10 – Johan Franzen‘s been hanging out with Datsyuk and Zetterberg too much. He was all over the Nashville zone all on his own before slipping that shot past Mason to put the Wings back out in front.

1:13 – Dom stones Jordin Tootoo to keep the Wings in front. Someday someone’s going to snap Tootoo in half but for now I’ll take this.

1:20 – Zetterberg hits Datsyuk to put him in all alone and all I can do is laugh. Mason looked terrified. And an octopus hits the ice.

1:29 – Kirk Maltby hits the post on an empty net. Appropriate. Datsyuk puts it in. Also appropriate.

1:31 – And it’s over. I’m glad, this could have gotten messy pretty quick but never got quite to that point. I’m going to sleep.

Stuart Out with Broken Finger

From the “you’ve gotta be frikkin’ kidding me” file…

The Red Wings have lost defenseman Brad Stuart for the remainder of the regular season and possibly the start of the playoffs. He broke his finger in the third period of Wednesday’s matchup with Columbus.

Kulfan and Khan had it first.

Update at 5:20 PM… This injury usually takes three to six weeks to heal. The Wings believe it will be closer to three. The playoffs start in two-and-a-half weeks.

Zetterberg Leads Red Wings over Columbus

Henrik Zetterberg scored a third-period natural hat trick Wednesday night, helping the Detroit Red Wings come from behind to earn a 3-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Chris Osgood stopped 22 of 23 Columbus shots, keeping the Red Wings in the game after a slow start.

After outshooting Detroit 8-3 in the first period, the Blue Jackets opened the game’s scoring on a power play at 7:05 of the second, with Manny Malhotra banging a loose puck past Osgood.

Zetterberg would begin his run at 6:43 of the third period on a rush from his own blue line. He came down the left wing and cut to the middle before crossing the Columbus blue line and splitting the defense, poking the puck between the pads of Fredrik Norrena.

With just 1:54 remaining and the Red Wings on a power play, Nicklas Lidstrom fired from the blue line. It was deflected to Pavel Datsyuk at the edge of the slot, who slowed it up and threw it to the left circle where Zetterberg put a shot into the open side of the net.

Zetterberg completed his hat trick just 35 seconds later, stealing the puck at center ice and racing in alone on Norrena. The Columbus netminder came out to challenge and Zetterberg skated around him, putting it into the empty net.

Norrena finished the night with 24 saves on 27 shots.

Both teams scored one power play goal. Columbus had seven chances with the extra attacker and Detroit had five.

The Red Wings are back in action on Thursday when they visit the Nashville Predators.


Detroit defenseman Derek Meech played as a forward, replacing the injured Valtteri Filppula.

Weekend Ramblings

Reflections on the five-game winning streak and the losing streak that came before it, since I won’t be around for the games this weekend…

Much has been made of the Red Wings’ 4-8-2 slump through February. The calendar is an easy way to break up chunks of a long season. If you ignore the calendar and focus just on the schedule, you see that the slump was sandwiched by two five (or more, depending on how things go in the next several games) game winning streaks. Dividing the schedule up just a little bit differently gives a “slump” of 14-8-2 over 24 games.

That’s one of the reasons I wasn’t so worried during the slump. Everything balances out over a season. The Red Wings have had three winning streaks of seven games or more throughout the current schedule. They were due for some losses.

Of course, that’s not to say there were no worries in February. The slump showed how important Detroit’s defensemen are to the team. That’s why I really liked (and still do like) Ken Holland‘s move to pick up Brad Stuart at the trade deadline. He’s an important depth player and while he might not have been able to stop the slump on his own, I think a couple of those losses might have gone differently with him in the lineup.

The Wings haven’t been back to normal in this winning streak. They’re grittier but slower. Dan Cleary‘s absence has been felt. Johan Franzen is doing a great job of replacing Tomas Holmstrom but no one has quite replaced Cleary (though Tomas Kopecky is definitely trying in the limited time he gets). They’re making it work, though, and that’s important when looking ahead to the playoffs.

Something should be said of the Wings’ amazing run of 17 seasons in a row making the postseason. I think that number speaks for itself, though.

Over at A2Y, Bill’s been having people board the stress train for the last month. Some people will do that, sure thing. Me? No stress yet. Save it for the postseason.

Five game winning streak. It’s all good.

Thursday Pre-Game Notes

Chris Osgood gets the start in net for the Red Wings tonight, his second start in a row with Dominik Hasek oh the shelf again with a sore back. Hasek won’t even dress for the game, Jimmy Howard has been called up to act as the backup.

Darren Helm joins Howard on the trip to Detroit. The center will make his NHL debut as Kris Draper will sit with a groin injury. He’s expected to miss three games.

Darren McCarty won’t make his return to the Red Wings lineup yet but he did practice with the team today.

Tomas Holmstrom remains out.

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