Saturday, March 23, 2013

Saturday HodgePodge

After dropping against the Minnesota Wild 4-2, the Red Wings traveled to Anaheim to face off a very good Ducks team. I was at work for the first half of the game, so I didn't see how it started off but the second half of the game made me extremely happy.

I always like it when we get grinders and energy guys putting up goals in big games. Or little games. Or just ever. Remember when Darren McCarty scored a hat trick against Patrick Roy in the playoffs? Yeah, that was awesome. Which is why it was mind bogglingly awesome to see Michigan's own Justin Abdelkader put up not one, not two, but three goals against Anaheim. And this wasn't Pasha Magic where he's having pucks banked off him. They were honest to God goals. Hell, the first one he made an outstanding individual effort around Sheldon Souray and beat Fasth five hole.

How mad were Duck's fans at Justin Abdelkader after his first goal? They were kind of mad. I wonder what this guy
did after goals number two and three.
It continues to perplex a lot of Red Wings fans, that we could drop 4-2 against the Wild and then waltz into Anaheim and bitch slap them so thoroughly. It's the frustrating reality of our current Detroit Red Wings. Again, the team is better than we give them credit for, but they're not playing well as they can as consistently as they should. Damien Brunner did contribute last night, but not with goals, but Pavel is still Pavel and we got scoring from one of our "energy" guys. Defense was good, maybe even great, and Howard continued outperforming expectations.

Just going to hand out some quick awards before we move on to talking about the greatest injustice suffered by Red Wings fans since the last injustice.

The Bret Lebda Game Puck: Joakim Andersson - The kid seemed to be struggling last night. When I came in, I saw others commenting that he seemed to be struggling and sure enough, it definitely seemed like he was having some troubles. It wasn't terrible, and I didn't seem him cost us any goals, but the Ducks did get some opportunities. One play in particular, Andersson tried to go one on one against Corey Perry, who promptly stripped the puck and waltzed into the zone. I like the kid, but he's gotta know who he's on the ice against.

The Kris Draper Game Puck: Drew Miller - I really am enjoying him up with Filppula and Zetterberg. It's working out so well that the Anaheim commentators spent a good couple of minutes talking about him and how well he's playing up on that line. We give Mike Babcock a lot of shit, but maybe he really is as good of a coach as we think he is when we're winning. Miller really plays bigger than his size and hasn't shied away in the slightest from playing more minutes against harder competition.

10 Points to Griffins-dor: Brendan Smith - He gets this award for one reason: He beat Bobby Ryan's ass. He threw a good clean check on Ryan when Ryan tried to check Smith, then Ryan threw a fit and wanted to drop the gloves. Smith all too willingly obliged and won. For this reason, Brendan Smith's new nickname is Hank Hill - because he beat the shit out of Bobby. Honorary Mention to Brian Lashoff for his first NHL fight.

The Perfect Puck: Johan Franzen - The Mule was playing really well last night. Justin Abdelkader owes two of his goals to great passes from Johan Franzen. It's obvious, but when Franzen makes use of his size, the threat of his shot, and his deceptively great hands, he can create a ton of opportunities for himself and for others. That's what he was doing last night, and particularly on Abdelkader's third goal.

O' Captain, My Captain Game Puck: Justin Abdelkader - Just watch the video. My god the guy was on fire last night. 

In Other News: Fox Sports Detroit has fired Larry "This is a Guy" Murphy for some reason. They say ratings but it's hard to know. I love Murphy, and from the outrage, it sounds like 99.99% of Red Wings fans did, too. If you're angry about it, please go and sign this petition and be sure to tweet Fox Sports Detroit and use the hashtag #BringBackMurph to make your voice heard.

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