Abel to Yzerman
And it's burning to the tune of "Chelsea Dagger."
I'd love to tell the naysayers to suck it, but I'd be telling myself to suck it and that's just awkward.
This is absolutely insane. Discuss as you see fit and I'm sure George will be right behind me with a 5000 word recap that he'll call "quick". All I can possibly type at this point is that, once again, this is the postseason none of us ever saw coming, but--because of who we are (Red Wing fans)--it's the one we deserve.
LGRW. 9 to 12 and 5 until this conference is burned to the ground once and for all by the team that kept it afloat and ruled it for twenty years.
I think I spelled "conflagration" right. I think. I don't have time to worry about that. I just don't. I'm way late for this Live Blog and there is just no time to waste.
Uncle Mike is not to be trifled with. Ask Joel Quenneville. I'd send you to Bruce Boudreau but he is still eating his feelings and can't speak between bites of ice-cream covered corndogs. While Babcock continues to strike fear into his opponents, it was not always that way.
At least that's what George tells us:
During the second intermission of a playoff game in 2002, Holland recalled Babcock telling him he wanted to be the next coach of the Red Wings.
"I don't hire interns,'' Holland said he told Babcock. "The next year, he knocked us out of the playoffs."
If you aren't aware of the political machinations of a corporation, "I don't hire interns." is the equivalent to "Shut your whore mouth." around here, and I can dig it.
In that moment of absolute heartbreak Uncle Mike realized something that has stuck with him since. The sweet baby Jesus does not let you join the greatest sports Organ-I-zation in the world without being worthy. Only by showing the competitive fire necessary for the relentless and continuous drive to win the Cup every season does one become a Red Wing, much less lead them.
More Uncle Mike, via George:
"When you put on our sweater, there's an obligation to Mr. Howe and Mr. Lindsay and the people that came before you to compete like a Red Wing."
There is a different standard in Hockeytown. A higher standard filled with hookers, puppies, and firetrucks with a metric tonne of banners hanging from the rafters. Speaking of rafters, news out of Denver is that the Dive have just retired Seth Jones' number in anticipation of his being drafted this summer.
Updated at 2057 PST because I forgot something really important at the end of this post.
Right now the Blackhawks are the hammer and the Red Wings are the nail. That will not change during the duration of these Western Conference semifinals.
The Blackhawks are too fast for Detroit. They're too deep. The Hawks are much more experienced, especially at the blue line. They're too well conditioned.
Chicago is too everything for a Wings team that appeared out of gas after going a full seven games against Anaheim in the first round.
Syd Crosby earned his first Messier Leadership Award Nomination in 1998 at the tender age of 11. Naturally, his glorious NHL career wouldn't start for another 3 years, but Gary Bettman felt his future endeavors warranted the nomination. The fact that the award hadn't been invented yet was inconsequential to the diminutive commissioner.
Ten years later, Crosby lost his "C" after a then-future Red Wing captain emasCulated him.
Jonathan Toews is a broken little boy. The past couple of days he has gone to bed muttering to hiimself, when not biting his pillow, and waking up needing to change his sheets. He is haunted by his personal boogeyman, Henrik Zetterberg, whose defensive coverage of Toews has been so suffocating, the lack of oxygen affecting "Tazer's" brain and emotional stability so badly, that he finally snapped.
As time expired in Detroit’s win, Jonathan Toews took the faceoff and immediately began to cross check Henrik Zetterberg. Again and again as the seconds ticked down, he went after Zetterberg who was trying to actually play defense.
As expected, the Red Wings weren’t too happy. Zetterberg went right after Toews, Bertuzzi got a couple of requisite shots in and then Jimmy Howard stepped in and did his part.
Who are these guys? After getting skated into the ground and taken to the woodshed in game 1, DET pawned CHI in game 2. The Wings were so damn good, the 'Hawks Captain, having no excuses for his teams ineptitude, accused them of cheating: “I’m not going to go off and complain about some calls that I thought should have been called or whatever,” Toews said, before essentially doing just that. “If that’s the way they’re going to play, we need to play the same way." That - is - just - embarassing.
Zetterberg has been a freaking beast, and quite obviously is in Toews head (and determined to stay there). Dittys like this are priceless, Hank, discussing his physical play in game 2: “It’s part of playoffs,'' Zetterberg said. “I think he plays better when it’s more physical and I play better when it’s a little more physical. It’s a give and take.'' If I didn't know better, and I do not, I'd say the gauntlet has been thrown.
Said Babcock: “It was great we had an (extra) off day. It's unbelievable how well that worked out for us. Now we're freshened up. Series on.'' Indeed. LGRW.
I've decided I don't like Marian Hossa. I never blamed him for leaving Hockeytown for the starched collars and wine coolers of Chicago. Well, I did because I'm me and I'm always looking for someone to blame for something. But, I kind of understood it. Our man with the plan Tick Tock made his choice and Gary wouldn't let us keep them both, so...it's history.
I don't like him now, though. Not one bit.
Matinee tilt today boys and girls. Captain Obvious, reiterating his comment from the LB: "Color me pessimistic, but after the 1st period, I kinda thought DET got taken to the woodshed. But for Jimmy, it’d been a whole lot worse."
Seems I'm not the only to notice that fact: Babcock said it boils down to this: His team didn't skate. “If you don't skate better, you have no chance,'' he said. “We were very poor, we didn't execute at all, we didn't skate, so we're all spread out. There was no one for the D to pass to. We didn't play fast. We played fine in the first 20 minutes, after that we got skated into the ice.''
CHI have won 8 straight - - DET are due, right? LGRW
About Abel to Yzerman
Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977. No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y. Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation. There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature. Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: firstname.lastname@example.org