Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Ready… Set… Gut Check Time

I am a mess.  An excess of nervous energy, my uncontrollable leg (the Jimmy-leg) bouncing, and random hallucinations caused by psychotropic drugs have made me a shell of the man I usually am.  And yet, strangely, I am okay with that.

For some reason these playoffs feel different to me.

Sure I am just as stressed as every other season, but this time I have a strange feeling of resignation.  Whatever will happen, will happen.  Whichever Detroit Red Wings team shows up tonight will determine the 19’s feelings tomorrow.  For me, that has been the way it has been all year, there is nothing different.

Strangely, being involved in a Game 7 in Round 1 is exactly where I want the Red Wings to be.

The 19 have had a long season.  Jobu has prison sexed us with curling irons all year.  That made us both sad and angry.  I think many of us thought about a post-season without the Red Wings involvement.  And that made us more sad and angry.

Now that the Wings are in the playoffs, it is time for them to decide what they want to do in them.  Which is why a Game 7 in the opening round is perfect.

It is time for the team to determine their destiny.  And either way, I don’t want them to fuch around about it.

Unlike past seasons, I will not be absolutely devastated with a first round loss.  Upset, yes.  Devastated, no.  That is unusual for me, and I suspect I am not alone.  Since the lockout, and even before, the Red Wings have played much more hockey than any other team in the world.  Which is why it is time for the team to decide what their future will hold.

If they decide that they want to take an early vacation, they will play like they did in Game 6.  While upset, I will be okay with that.  But only this round.

If they decide that they really are the best team in hockey, they will play like it.  Game 7 will be ours and I really dig that.  If they win, they must not stop until Cup #12 is theirs.  There can be no in between.  No losing future rounds.  It’s now or never, either the Wings take an early vacation tonight, or they go all the way to Cup #12. No more fauxing around.

I will say this, if they win tonight and lose in the second or third round, I will be more upset than if they lost tonight.  In fact, I will be livid.

Lose tonight and take a long-deserved vacation.  I can live with that.

Win tonight, and Cup #12 is ours.  I will love that.

There is no in between.  Do or die.  The answer will come tonight, bitches.

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Comments

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cephalopod's avatar

Sounds like a choice between the blue pill and the red pill.

Take the blue pill, Wings lose, I’m no longer emptionally vested in these goddamn playoffs.  I’m living a life of ignorant bliss, able to poop regularly, weekends free to do whatever I want, no obligation to watch nationally televised playoff games that go to overtime only to be interrupted by horse racing or dwarf tossing or whatever.

Take the red pill, Wings win, I remain in the harsh reality of blown calls, disallowed goals, afternoon games on NBC that take away from my precious free time on weekends, sneaky commercials showing He Who Shall Not Be Named lifting a Trophy He Did Not Deserve…

One Red pill please.  fml

Posted by cephalopod from Chicago...nope, still not over it. on 04/27/10 at 05:04 PM ET

Jennemy of the Skate's avatar

Since that stupid-a$$ trip to Europe to start the year, this season has had a strange vibe.

I’ve felt that too.  At first I thought it was just the crap with Versus and the weird start in Europe but then came all the injuries and the bizarrness of “which team will show up tonight.”

Posted by hockeychic from Denver, CO on 04/27/10 at 03:56 PM ET

Same here. Blurgh…

Posted by Jennemy of the Skate from the bar car on the stress train on 04/27/10 at 05:05 PM ET

SYF's avatar

You know what…fuch it.

Play Shane Doan.  Play that sunuvabitch.  I want no excuses from the Wings.  There is a reason why that motto (“To whom much is given, much is expected.”) hangs over the doorway leading out of the Wings’ dressing room.  This is Game Seven.  This is all in.  If Doan suits up, the reaction from the Wings shouldn’t be, “Oh no,” and then play like they’ve got a crooked stick up their collective asses.

I’ve seen this team shrug off the bad calls and negativity.  I’ve seen this team play with amazingly high levels of skill and at a speed way too fast for even veteran fans such as ourselves.  I’ve seen this team crawl out of despair and play like it’s their last stand.  I’ve seen it.  I want it every game from here on out.

Anything less than that is a failure of the Wings’ players’ committments to play.  That great big chalice we so revere?  It ain’t gonna have Zetterberg’s, Datsyuk’s, Eaves’, Miller’s, Howard’s, Babcock’s, MacLean’s, Ilitch’s, etc etc names on it with a half-assed effort.

All on the ice tonight or GTFO.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 04/27/10 at 05:06 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

When I think about The Perfect Human turning forty this week and possibly contemplating retirement, I miss the careers he and Vlady would have had together. I am filled with hatred toward Richard Gnida and hope he rots in hell.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:06 PM ET

rrasco's avatar

I feel the same way, but I still hear the voice inside of me screaming, “MUST…WIN…#12!”

Posted by rrasco from TEXAS on 04/27/10 at 05:08 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

I miss the careers he and Vlady would have had together

I often think about that. If Vladdy had stayed healthy, the Wings would have won two more Cups, giving them six in 12 years. I truly believe that.

Any team that had the Lids / Vladdy combo would have been a defensive machine unlike any other. People tend to forget the sheer intimidation Vladimir Konstantinov exuded.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/27/10 at 05:11 PM ET

Cwix's avatar

That’s funny because I also feel at ease today. Like all of you, I do want them to win but it won’t be as crushing a loss as game 7 of the finals last year. As Mandingo pointed out, there does seem to be something going on with the team that’s not readily apparent. This season has been a perfect storm. Several years in a row of short summers, most recently after a devastating series loss. Long-term injuries to a significant number of our top players causing the team to be in flux nearly the whole season and just barely hanging on near a playoff berth. Considering all of that, it’s really remarkable that they’ve made it this far and a tribute to the team and organ-I-zation we love. Whatever happens tonight, they’ve shown tremendous heart and I’m totally okay with that.

Posted by Cwix from Grand Rapids, now Chicago, IL on 04/27/10 at 05:13 PM ET

Twig in Houston's avatar

where is richard gnida these days?

Posted by Twig in Houston from Houston, TX on 04/27/10 at 05:15 PM ET

HockeyTownTodd's avatar

Before the playoffs started, I would have bet a large sum of money that Lidstrom would be back next year. With the way the playoffs have gone for him so far, now I’m not so sure. The level of his play has dropped a notch and even though that still makes him better than 95% of the D-men in the league, I wonder if it is good enough for him.
Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich

Having seen in his career just what this league has deteriorated to, nobody could expect him to not retire after this season.  #12 or not, he is pretty damn smart, and seen what players become when they stick around too long.

I have no stress at all today….
Wings lose tonight it will just mean they had no business in the post season this year, and their late season rally to make the first round was just a thank you to their fans.

Posted by HockeyTownTodd on 04/27/10 at 05:17 PM ET

FranzensMouthguard's avatar

Voox, I’m not sure I can agree with your happy pony outlook on this, double whiskey, stat.

Posted by FranzensMouthguard from Chicago, IL on 04/27/10 at 05:18 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

where is richard gnida these days?
Posted by Twig in Houston on 04/27/10 at 04:15 PM

Ranked 56,491st in the world in professional poker.

http://www.worldpokerrank.com/players.php?id=97946

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:18 PM ET

Bella's avatar

Jeebus Freaking Christ. I was all excited about Mandingo posting again, and then he had to throw in the comment about Lidstrom. Now I not only want to vomit, I want to vomit and shoot myself afterward.

Posted by Bella on 04/27/10 at 05:19 PM ET

FranzensMouthguard's avatar

Also, the Pen(i)s’ fans have already been jumping me on FB, I don’t want to think about the flood of comments if we lose. We can talk all we want about best team of the decade and more hockey than anyone, etc etc, its just an excuse to the other teams fans. Sigh….

Posted by FranzensMouthguard from Chicago, IL on 04/27/10 at 05:21 PM ET

SYF's avatar

From NHL.com:

Howard, who seemed calm and confident in the Wings’ locker room Tuesday, said he would treat this as he would any other game. Given the experience of his teammates, he’s fully prepared to lean on them over the 60 minutes.

“This is probably one of the biggest games of my life,” Howard said. “I’m just going to go out there and do what I do—stop pucks. The veteran leadership here is key. They’ve got this calmness about them and it sort of trickles down through the room. I’m just going to follow their lead.”

Then make it happen, Jimmah.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 04/27/10 at 05:25 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

But the reasons the other teams’ fans come after us is because they know we are the best hockey organization in this league. They don’t have many times to kick us, so when those infrequent times occur, they come out in a vengeance.

Wear it as a badge of honor when someone boos your Red Wings sweater, or mocks you on this site, or posts trash on your FB. It’s because they know you are what they cannot be:  a fan of the best hockey team in the NHL over the last decade…a fan whose team has won four Cups in the last twelve years.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/27/10 at 05:27 PM ET

Twig in Houston's avatar

i bet vlady could beat him at poker. i don’t even know if vladdy plays, but that would be great tv.

Posted by Twig in Houston from Houston, TX on 04/27/10 at 05:29 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

I miss the careers he and Vlady would have had together. I am filled with hatred toward Richard Gnida and hope he rots in hell.
Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from Warm and sunny SoCal on 04/27/10 at 04:06 PM ET

Jiri too.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 04/27/10 at 05:29 PM ET

Alan's avatar

Whiskey at my house for the game.

If I dig around, I might be able to find pain suppressants just in case the unthinkable happens.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 04/27/10 at 05:32 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

Jiri too.
Posted by MOWingsfan19 on 04/27/10 at 04:29 PM

Yup.

Lids might not have 6 norris trophies. Vladdie certainly would have won at least one. But like RedWinger said, the team would have won the Cup at least two more times.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:34 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Also, the Pen(i)s’ fans have already been jumping me on FB

Posted by FranzensMouthguard from Chicago, IL on 04/27/10 at 04:21 PM ET

All 14 of them?

Posted by Primis on 04/27/10 at 05:35 PM ET

Twig in Houston's avatar

Lids might not have 6 norris trophies. Vladdie certainly would have won at least one. But like RedWinger said, the team would have won the Cup at least two more times.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from Warm and sunny SoCal on 04/27/10 at 04:34 PM ET

tph would still have 6. vladdie would have won niedermeyer and chara’s.

Posted by Twig in Houston from Houston, TX on 04/27/10 at 05:40 PM ET

Alzy's avatar

I’m not sure what’s up with you bitches today. Why is everyone so “if it happens, it happens”? I never accept losing, neither do those men with the Winged Wheel on their jerseys, and nor should you. Cinderella gets punched in the face tonight, then we’re going fishing in San Jose.

LET’S GO RED WINGS(Excla-fuching-mation. POINT)

Posted by Alzy from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada on 04/27/10 at 05:40 PM ET

SYF's avatar

Fuch Richard Gnida.  That POS can suck a bent horsec*ck.

Posted by SYF from Alana Blanchard's Bikinis and Surfboards on 04/27/10 at 05:41 PM ET

pgoody's avatar

Before there was Kronwalled there was Konstipated…

Posted by pgoody on 04/27/10 at 05:41 PM ET

Avatar

I agree to some extent. I just don’t know what I am going to do every day without a Wings game to watch or a Wings game to read about and analyze.

Posted by tomscott132 on 04/27/10 at 05:41 PM ET

WingsFanInBeanLand's avatar

The thing that’s the most depressing to me isn’t the prospect of a loss tonight, but the fact that this might be Lidstrom’s last game.

I just threw up in my mouth a little.  Then proceeded to projectile vomit on the wall that I’m facing.

I know it’s near but I don’t want it to happen.  The Captain was the heart of this team but I believe that TPH has been the backbone since he pulled the Winged Wheel over his shoulders.  He deserves whatever his decision is.  Lord knows he’s earned it but being the selfish fan I am, he can’t retire.

Besides, we’re going to see him play into June, grab that silver chalice out of Little Gary’s grubby hands, and skate that bitch around the Joe.  When he’s done admiring his perfect self in the oddly reflecting light emanating from the names who won it in ‘97 and ‘98, he’ll pass it off to Bert where he gently places The Cup down on center ice, pulls out a measuring tape, pencil, and note paper to calculate how much C4 he can pack into it.

That’s my what if.

Just win boys.

Posted by WingsFanInBeanLand from where free agents no longer dare. on 04/27/10 at 05:42 PM ET

Twig in Houston's avatar

not sure if anyone has noticed, but a lot of the 19 are on stage 5 of the 5 stages of grief. i would say that all of us have been on one of these stages at some point this year.

stage 1: denial. “this is the red wings! they don’t lose!”

stage 2: anger. “fuch you, jobu! thanks gary. ass.”

stage 3: bargaining. “jobu, i present to you the freshly killed corpse of my neighbors puppy. please let the red wings win one more game…”

stage 4: depression. this took place this past sunday.

stage 5: acceptance. “if we lose, it’s ok. long deserved rest…”

Posted by Twig in Houston from Houston, TX on 04/27/10 at 05:46 PM ET

pgoody's avatar

Why is everyone so “if it happens, it happens”?

So go the Wings, so goes Wing followers…

I think most of us were happy we made it in…

Posted by pgoody on 04/27/10 at 05:47 PM ET

Trish's avatar

...a fan whose team has won four Cups in the last twelve years.

Didn’t we win 4 Cups in 11 years?  And 1 was the lock-out year right? 

So that was 4 Cups in 10 years that it was possible to win a Cup, correct?  40%
Or am I all wrong re this?

Posted by Trish from Tampa/Clearwater FL on 04/27/10 at 05:47 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar


I’m not sure what’s up with you bitches today.
Posted by Alzy from Innisfail, Alberta, Canada on 04/27/10 at 04:40 PM

What the *#$%@& happened to the A2Y I used to know? Where’s the spirit? Where’s the guts, huh? This could be the greatest night of our lives, but you’re gonna let it be the worst. “Ooh, we’re afraid to go with you Alzy, we might get in trouble.” Well just kiss my ass from now on! Not me! I’m not gonna take this. Fiddler, he’s a dead man! Doan, dead! Bryzgalov…

Dead!

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:48 PM ET

pgoody's avatar

he’ll pass it off to Bert where he gently places The Cup down on center ice, pulls out a measuring tape, pencil, and note paper to calculate how much C4 he can pack into it.


hahaaaaaaaaa…

Posted by pgoody on 04/27/10 at 05:49 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

I may as well make the reverse mojo complete and place a bet on the Coyotes to win.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:50 PM ET

bobby lang's avatar

It’s been a weird season, so it’s only fitting that it would be a strange postseason. The Wings blowing Game 6 at home with a chance at eliminating Gary’s team? Unthinkable any other year. But the script has been different all year for this Wings team. I think some people are interpreting that to the Wings are going to lose. Maybe the Wings just take a different road to get there this year.

Fuch it, I’m in. What have I got to lose? Sanity left me years ago.

Posted by bobby lang from Columbus, OH-IO on 04/27/10 at 05:51 PM ET

Avatar

What the *#$%@& happened to the A2Y I used to know? Where’s the spirit? Where’s the guts, huh?

Fuch it. A loss to the Pups will be unacceptable.

Posted by tomscott132 on 04/27/10 at 05:51 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

I’m not sure what’s up with you bitches today. Why is everyone so “if it happens, it happens”?

Because the reality of this season is that it wasn’t the type of season that inspires confidence in a lengthy post-season run. And while that sucks in one sense, in another sense it is very understandable, because it happens to all teams at certain times.

I’ve not seen many playoff match-ups over the years in which the Wings were such heavy favorites on paper. If just talent won games, this series would have been over in four.

But I’ve not seen the Wings become emotionally invested in this series yet. I’ve seen enough series in the past, where they started slow, but they always hit another gear, and rarely looked back. Not this year.

But again, it is very understandable, too.

Hopefully they still have that collective “STFU” in their arsenal. But if not, I have a strange sense of calm about it all. And that’s not because I’m normally a calm person in the playoffs; in fact, the opposite is true.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/27/10 at 05:52 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Didn’t we win 4 Cups in 11 years?  And 1 was the lock-out year right?

No, we made it to the Finals, but were swept by the Devils in the lockout year.

not sure if anyone has noticed, but a lot of the 19 are on stage 5 of the 5 stages of grief.

There is some truth to that.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/27/10 at 05:54 PM ET

CaptainDennisPolonich's avatar

I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part.

We’re just the guys to do it.

Posted by CaptainDennisPolonich from The Land of Fake Boobs and Real Nuts on 04/27/10 at 05:56 PM ET

jennyquarx's avatar

I suppose I am with you guys, but I am still a giant ball of stress and had to take a nap this afternoon to keep from going completely insane.  I will be okay either way I guess.  I would rather they make their exit in a later round, I mean, duh.  No, faux that, I’m not at stage 5 yet.  Nevermind.

Posted by jennyquarx on 04/27/10 at 05:57 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

What the *#$%@& happened to the A2Y I used to know? Where’s the spirit? Where’s the guts, huh?

Spent, on Sunday. Demolished after watching periods two and three.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 04/27/10 at 05:57 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

Bright sides and silver linings are for the losers.

Winners go home and Fvck the prom queen. And Karen Newman.  Make it Happen.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 04/27/10 at 05:57 PM ET

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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: wphoulihan@gmail.com