Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Hey Duff…You Made The List

This is neat.  We're being patronized. Again. By a Detroit journalist. Again.  Bob Duff, in full-on and typical crawl up Mike Babcock's ass and stay there so he'll talk to you again Wednesday mode, says Dan Cleary and Justin Abdelkader had more to do with Kronwall's goal last night than, say, Tim Horton did. (See Kate's comment below...neither player had jack squat to do with that goal).

Dan Cleary situated himself on the doorstep of Colorado Avalanche goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere. A few feet away, Justin Abdlekader tussled with a Colorado defender, taking away even more of Giguere’s vision so that when Detroit Red Wings defenceman Niklas Kronwall blasted a shot from the point, Giguere never saw it.

The puck bounced off the back boards, hit Giguere’s right leg and bounded into the net for the winning goal in Detroit’s 2-1 victory Tuesday at Joe Louis Arena.

The Hockeytown faithful, which generally gears down from smug to panic in one shift, is growling.

You're smug and you panic from shift to shift.

Ok. That's accurate.  But this?

Get Abdelakder and Cleary off Pavel Datsyuk’s wings, they whine. Move Tomas Tatar on to that unit and get Gustav Nyquist to Detroit stat, they scream.

All of which falls on deaf ears among the Detroit braintrust, and with good reason.

You're whining. Your points, the ones splashed here and on multiple blogs, article comments and even talk radio when certain stations feel the Wings are worthy to discuss, are not valid because you're simply fans and therefore you--and we can now add Bob Duff to the list of condescending Detroit journalists ("I don't care what fans think"--Drew Sharp)--know absolutely nothing.

In my opinion we've got Wojo and Niyo left.  And the Anti-Digger. We need you back Bruce MacLeod.  

What's the value in that, the smug, panicked, "whining" remarks? I'm curious.  If there has been one fan-based "analysis" with merit the last several years, it's this one.  Datsyuk's production has been eliminated since this "line" was formed. The Wings can't score more than two goals per game.  Abdelkader and Cleary are muckers and Babcock has turned Datsyuk into the same.  It's obvious.  And we're supposed to believe, like Duff allegedly does, that they're "getting better."

Please.  He, like every other digger, is pandering to the organ-I-zation because you don't irritate Mike Babcock. He reads everything.  You coddle and stroke him (shut up).  Read Duff's lead again then think back to the criticism levied against Babcock right here the last two days. Coincidental, I'm sure.  We love our Uncle Mike. We do. Almost all of us, anyway. But when he screws up, he's not immune. Unless you're a Detroit beat writer and then it's hands off, right Bob? Is that a John Hahn edict or is it just the natural order of things in Babcock's world?

The Lions? Fair game. Rip away.  The Pistons? Nobody gives a shit.  Jim Leyland? Oh hell yes...have at him, right?

Why not Mike Babcock? This move is sound, Bob? Really?  

I'm just whining, right?  Whatever.  I'm smug and panicked.  The Stress Train is rocking, as always.

It's a stupid line combination. And it's wasteful.  And any digger who defends it is a pawn. 

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Comments

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J.J. from Kansas's avatar

feel free to support the “all your eggs in one basket” line setup, but I don’t.

What a fantastic strawman you’ve built here. My, what cute little arms he has. Oh! Even a hat!

I don’t see how replacing Justin Abdelkader with Tomas Tatar on Pavel Datsyuk’s wing constitutes “putting all your eggs in one basket”.

I guess while we’re being stupid, I’ll say feel free to support “put a rotten egg in your best basket” line seup, but I don’t.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/06/13 at 05:49 PM ET

PaulinMiamiBeach's avatar

Do you think a line with Draper, Shanahan, and Fedorov would have been MORE effective?

sure, but in case you haven’t noticed they’re a little thin on Shanahans right now.

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/06/13 at 05:56 PM ET

PaulinMiamiBeach's avatar

What a fantastic strawman you’ve built here. My, what cute little arms he has. Oh! Even a hat!

I apologize for applying the (mostly) consensus position to you, that Datsyuk shouldn’t be playing with lower players AT ALL.

for the record, I’d rather see him playing with Brunner than anyone else…but in the context of “is Cleary Abdelkader Datsyuk a bust” I simply think it is not.  or at least the jury is still out.  I see good puck control and good chances.  I see Datsyuk making two other players better - which sometimes is a reasonable tradeoff (when you’re short-staffed).

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/06/13 at 05:59 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

for the record, I’d rather see him playing with Brunner than anyone else

I’ve wondered what that pairing would do as well.  I guess Zetterberg has dibs on him or something.

I think that Cleary bought himself a little bit of extra time with the recent offense he put up before the Wings got into this last four-game stretch of scoring only 5 goals. I just think that Abdelkader has had more than his fair share of time to belong in the top six and just hasn’t gotten it done.  He did well on his two shifts with Andersson and Eaves.  In the short run, I’d just rather give some extra benefit to Tatar, who I think has worked his way up to a bit more responsibility in the short run while we wait for any one of the four injured forwards to come back.

If not Tatar, then I’d probably give that responsibility to Eaves, who’s pretty much just Abdelkader with more finish. If for no other reason than Abby can’t just be the benefactor of decent chances without finishing.  Heck, I might even give Andersson a chance.  Datsyuk should make any one of them better.  RIght now, I don’t think Abdelkader is better than any one of those three and I’m out of patience waiting for him to realize the potential that’s supposed to have him at least above Eaves and Andersson at this point.

Hell, I might give the surprisingly speedy and also-surprisingly good-with-his-stick Jordin Tootoo a shot at Pavs’ wing just to see if he can’t get lucky with some of those chances.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 03/06/13 at 06:11 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

make sure you tell that to Draper and Maltby next time you see them.

Who did these 2 ever skate with for quite a few games in a row that is in the same stratosphere as Pavel?
A guy with a single point on the year should not be a second line winger, that’s a plain and simple fact regardless of Pavel being on that line or not.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 03/06/13 at 06:16 PM ET

PaulinMiamiBeach's avatar

JJ did you notice Brunner knock that puck out of the air last night?  I’ve seen him do it a few times.  it’s something Pavel is pretty good at.

maybe they could play together and never let the puck touch the ice grin

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/06/13 at 06:28 PM ET

monkey's avatar

feel free to support the “all your eggs in one basket” line setup, but I don’t.

Mike Babcock likes to wear his egg as a hat.

Posted by monkey from Finland on 03/06/13 at 06:44 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Mike Babcock likes to wear his egg as a hat.
Posted by monkey from Fear and Loathing on 03/06/13 at 05:44 PM ET

But his coaching decisions lately have him wearing egg on his face.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/06/13 at 07:04 PM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

  I see Datsyuk making two other players better - which sometimes is a reasonable tradeoff (when you’re short-staffed).

Posted by PaulinMiamiBeach on 03/06/13 at 04:59 PM ET

I don’t see that at all. I see one of the best players in the entire world stuck on a line with two players that are lucky to be wearing the Winged Wheel. Both have been disappointing to say the least, and, not even Pavel Datsyuk, the Magician, can make these two other players better. Since when is it his responsibility?  Isn’t it up to the Coach to get the most out of his players? The plan ain’t panning, so, change the fuching plan.

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 03/06/13 at 07:27 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 03/06/13 at 06:27 PM ET

Game, set and match to Ms. Kate.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 03/06/13 at 08:31 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

The plan ain’t panning, so, change the fuching plan.

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 03/06/13 at 06:27 PM ET

Amen Sister!

Day 4!

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 03/06/13 at 09:26 PM ET

cigar_nurse's avatar

The plan ain’t panning, so, change the fuching plan.

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 03/06/13 at 06:27 PM ET

Amen Sister!

Day 4!

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Looking for a “D” man on 03/06/13 at 08:26


Hey Kate. I learned riding to school in the Model T. ” You can’t make chicken salad out of chicken shit”. Change em already Babbles. You are hurting probably the most creative player in the world with your dumb ass stubborness.

Posted by cigar_nurse from Greenville South Cakalakee on 03/06/13 at 10:22 PM ET

Avatar

so his linemates have nothing to do with it, then…so why does it matter who he’s paired with?

Are you a hockey fan?  Do you watch the games?  Did you watch the last one, at least.

Datsyuk is creating chances, he is putting the puck on Abdelkader’s stick and all Abdelkader has to do is tap it in, YET HE CAN’T CLOSE!

He is creating chances for his linemates.

Understand?

And they are not putting the puck in the net.  Specifically, Abdelkader is not putting the puck in the net.

Understand?

So yes.  It matter who is on his line because THOSE GUYS NEED TO BE ABLE TO PUT THE PUCK IN THE NET.

Jesus H, it seriously can’t be that hard to understand.

I guess there is no value to grinding the puck down low like Cleary and Abby do, giving Datsyuk time and space to work his magic.

No, there genuinely isn’t any value to it, because this is supposed to be the second line, not the fourth.  The second line shouldn’t have to be grinding anything because it should be the second most talented line on the team.  That’s how this shit works.

doesn’t matter, it’s all moot once we get some people back from injury and Babbles has more options.

Of course it matters.  It matters because Mike Babcock HAS MORE OPTIONS, he just stubbornly refuses to use them.  The guys he is refusing to use (Tatar, Andersson, Eaves, even Nyquist) are all better hockey players than Justin Abdelkader is.  We (and Pavel, and the Red Wings) shouldn’t have to wait for injuries to heal because the options are there right now.

feel free to support the “all your eggs in one basket” line setup, but I don’t.

How about TWO eggs in a basket instead of one?  You know, lots of teams have TWO lines that can score.  Sometimes, when you hear announcers or fans or executive talk about “top six” and “bottom six”?  That’s what they’re talking about.

or at least the jury is still out.

How is the jury out?  In the last game alone Datsyuk created three or four simple, easy tap-in opportunities that Abdelkader f*cked up.  And hell, why does a fourth line grinder get nearly 10 games to pretend he’s a top six forward when every single person who watched him play in the NHL knows that he is not a top six forward and he never will be.

This is a short season in which every point counts even moreso than normally, so why is this guy being given so much time to prove and re-prove and re-prove again that he does not belong on the top six?

Posted by Garth on 03/06/13 at 11:20 PM ET

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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: wphoulihan@gmail.com