Abel to Yzerman
Your Detroyet Red Wings have 47 pts (tied with CBJ, but DET have a game in hand) and sit in 8th place today, they trail 7th place STL by three points.
Tonights tilt with CGY, of the 6 games remaining on the schedule (@ CGY, @ VAN, PHX, LAK, NSH, @ DAL), is the opponent with the poorest record. The Flames defense is horrible, 3.38 GA/G, 0.68 5-5 F/A; both marks second worst in the league.
Win or go home.
I can't believe I wrote that. "Changing the narrative" is one of the worst, elitist, BS phrases in the history of our esteemed language. But I'm using it, because it fits.
And here's why...
I think a lot of people would be happy to see us miss the playoffs, so we've got to go out there and play with the same sense of urgency when we get to Calgary.
That's James Tiberius Howard, via Helene St. James.
Since the Ingalls sisters took their feel-good story to Walnut Grove, this blog has been--almost exclusively--a bitching, bitter, blast at Kenny Holland. I take nothing back. It's been a legitimate disappointment. But I'm admitting today that I could have gone in different directions many times and taken the easy road.
Howard's quote struck a chord with me this morning and it reminded me of what we used to be here: a fawning, biased ode to the greatest franchise in hockey.
I don't have much. Detroit's made two huge offseason signings over the last two years. Our GM, aggressive because he knows a title is within reach and always looking for ways to make his owner and his fan base happy, has refused to acknowledge parity as an option. Refused.
Detroit's GM is a swashbuckler. He gobbles opportunities. He's fearless. And he's being rewarded...
Hunter's hitting .415 and Fielder? .439.
Yes, that GM.
DET have fallen off the back of the POS, and today are in the running for a lottery ball. The Wings main problem this season is their inablilty to score more than 3 a game; their 2.46 G/G is 10th worst in the league.
Of course NSH thinks 2.46 to be a downright gaudy number, they are dead-last in scoring at a woeful 2.29 G/G. The Predators hit the ice tonight riding a 5 game losing streak. But, Wing-Killer Pekka Rinne is on-fire: 1-4-2, 1.85, .942 in last 7 GPI, stopping everything in sight and losing.
Time to win or go home.
You've got some time so I want you to do something for me. Go whip out your "Live Bullet" and cue up the greatest rock and roll song of our generation, "Night Moves". Early on, just after Seger tells us about the aforementioned cornfields?
After last nights craptastic game in which the Wings managed a charity point, DET remain in 8th, 2 pts behind MIN, and 2 pts in front of PHX.
If DET are lucky enough to limp into the post-season,then tonights tilt against CHI is the proverbial playoff preview. Looking at the'Hawks gaudy statistics, it could be ugly, really friggin ugly.
However, after witnessing last nights malaise; don't talk about playoffs, the Wings will be lucky to win a freaking game on this road-trip.
One more day in sunny Rhode Island and then some semblance of regular posting will continue. Tonite?
Trouble's brewing, brother. More on that in a quick minute.
James Tiberius Howard is close (and it's probably a done deal by now) to a six-year contract extension. Ok, Kenny. We trust you. Really...and that's despite recent troubles.
But I'm curious.
DET are 8th in Conference with 9 games remaining; only 1 pt ahead of PHX, and 2 pts ahead of DAL and CBJ.
After tonight, DET begin a 4 game road trip, tomorrow at CHI, at NSH, CGY and VAN.
Hard times, bitches.
It's not submission. We're not Blues fans, for god's sake. It's short-term acceptance. For a very brief period of time we've come to understand that this franchise's singular goal is to extend the playoff streak. That's organizationally. They're thinking of nothing else. They expect nothing other than just getting in.
It's why Pittsburgh landed two captains, both better than the one they already had. Minnesota improved. Columbus did and so did Boston. The Diggers hint that we kicked Jagr's tire but not hard enough. We're also reminded that the Wings committed to a youth movement when injuries hit us in February? Ok.
I call it giving up. But that's just my isolated opinion, I'm sure.
Ten games left in Gary's midget shortened season. Ten games to determine if the Wings play post-season hockey for the 22nd consecutive season.
The good news for DET, they control their own destiny. The Wings 43 points put them in 7th position in the POS, 3 points better than 9th place PHX. If DET can play .500 they stand a good chance to get in, 12 points probably makes them a lock, so good news there.
There is bad news too. DET's remaining schedule is difficult: 5 games against playoff teams, 3 games against the bottom of the POS (1 against PHX, 2 against NSH), and two games against also-rans (CGY and DAL). STL today, and SJS at home Thursday, then on the road for a week: at CHI (Friday), then NSH, CGY, and VAN. By the end of next week, the Wings could be shining up their golf clubs.
Any of you Cosmic Dusters remember the last time the Wing's were fighting just to get into the playoffs? It's too early, and I haven't had enough coffee to recall. DET win and they are in, so just freaking win.
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