Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Too, Too Much?  Digging Thursday

Ok. We like him. We really do.  The Diggers, every last one of them plus George, have all told us we like Jordin Tootoo's spirit and his willingness to get 'er going. Got it.  I dig it and it's nice to see, mostly.  Fundamentally, I have issues with the "spontaneity" of a fight right off the hop, without any obvious anger.  But Uncle Mike must dig it, because I really don't think he'd put Tootoo's line out there to start a game (or even two) unless everyone knew precisely what was expected.

Is it a silent understanding between our Uncle and Stirs Shit With Big Wooden Spoon? The relationship between a coach and an instigator/fighter/shit stirrer has got to be an interesting one.  In Gary's world, nobody will ever admit to actually telling a player to actually go and punch someone in the face.  But does Tootoo automatically just know it...that if Babcock puts him out there to start the game he'd like him to, you know, punch someone in the face?

Lots of smart guys, pharmacists and even readers who like to call me petulant and self-entitled, have been pointing out the stench of "contrived" fights.  On this, I have to agree. I like it when men get pissed at each other and do things as a result of it.  Like trying to put their knuckles on the other guy's head.  It's what men do sometimes and it's fun to watch and even participate when the time is right and as long as it doesn't last too long and even more fun if the other guy's a little smaller and it's a frigging blast if maybe one of your friends grabs him by his arms at just the right moment so you can land a few before it gets, dammit, broken up. 

Fights in the first three seconds without any real hate involved or even anger?  I don't know.  Last one that seemed to mean anything was Lemieux/McCarty II and you know the assclown had been thinking of it for a lot of months before it happened. It made sense.  Tootoo's pregame antics are just that. Antics. His second fight against Dallas had real venom. The first? Not so much.

See this ditty that the emperor posted this morning? Adrienne Dater is none too happy that the Dive organ-i-zation can't just go ahead and admit that they suck ass and have for years.  He's, again, on the verge of tears at the foggy memory of the physical pleasure his heroes used to provide back in the heady days of Joey and Floppa and Patty the Domestic Gentle Giant.

Thing is, the Avs never had to enforce any company-line “keep it positive, even thought things really blow around here right now” schlomola with Sakic, because all his teams did here in Colorado was win.

Wellllll...again, the facts aren't important right now.

That is just good, plain, old-fashioned barn dancing, glue sniffing, tummy rubbing fun for the whole damn family.  Few things in this life are better than waking up to an article penned by Dater, whining about the state of the Dive. God I love it so.  Screw him.  Screw them.  Here's a common refrain from the interns and it bears repeating: there is no ounce of sympathy for that fan base. None. Suffer.  Suffer hard and long.

Sooooo....I'm a sucker.  I haven't run this by my entertainment counselor yet, but I'll be getting Game Center Live today or tomorrow.  I want to watch it through the PS3 when I'm not getting my ass kicked by 13 year olds in Madden. And I want to watch it on my Ipad and my phone, etc, etc.  I've read the reviews on every SBN hockey site (JJ: was it a decree from the SBN daddys that every hockey blog do a GCL analysis? I've seen it on WIIM, MHH and the Bitter Bitches at Game Time), and it looks like I'll put up with the occasional lag in exchange for the convenience.

Plus, and we all know this is the actual fact, the Wings gave me hope the other night.  Without that hope, the fifty bucks for the rest of the season wouldn't seem quite so thrifty.

Shit.  Are we ready for optimism?  If you're clear-headed, and that's common around here, right?--if we're clear-headed, it's probably too early for the kind of expectations we're used to.  But something's nagging at me about this team.  The defense is better, much better, than we could have anticipated.  That, in itself, is staggering. 

Because if the D is even fair, then hope is not illogical.   Right now it's fair to say this:  those predicting an end to the playoff streak are going to be disappointed again. 

The Wings sit 8th in the conference but were 6th 24 hours ago. There is no reason to expect significant change to that dynamic. They're going to be moving between 4 and 8 the rest of the way. Chicago and St. Louis are going to be neck-and-neck for the division.  We will not compete for that crown. That's a fact.  But the Wings will continue to improve. The power play will get better.  The kill will be sustained, especially if baby Jesus lets us have Darren by god Helm back for any stretch of time. 

James Tiberius Howard will be better and better, because he's been consistently very good for three years. 

And there's this:  Ken Holland will, he must, do something.  He must because it's a crapshoot and anyone can win it, just like the one-trick Kings did last year.  He has to do it this deadline because the summer won't bring the kind of high-priced hookers last year's did and he's got to re-sign JFH, who will be pushing for the big bucks he deserves.  And so he will because the Season of our Datsyuk is fleeting and fading. We all know it.  Three years left, max?  Holland blew it when he had the chance to surround Lidstrom with the talent he needed to close with a Cup. You have to think the same mistake won't be made again.  Money to spend. Holes to fill. Tick. Tock.

I'm wondering about Friday.  I'm wondering what the Wings will bring against a St. Louis team that absolutely bent them over on opening night.  It was violent and horrible.  Hopefully it's absolutely seared into the Wing collective.  Yes, Uncle Mike, we know.  The sun came out the next day.  Got it.  But did it really?  Or has your little bit of sunshine been obscured by the sniffing, panting spectre of a fat Ken Hitchcock blocking your happiness since the day he slapped a tramp stamp on you and made you his biotch?

Friday must be redemption for the Wings. I don't even need a win. I just need competition and a display of grit and acknowledgment that Game 1 was unacceptable.

So that's where we are on this warm San Diego Thursday.  Hopeful, but still guarded.  Skeptical but joyful, because I might be worried about my team from time to time but at least I'm not, you know...a Denver fan.  That would suck so very badly.  Right, Dater?  Suck it.

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Comments

Surfer Ken's avatar

So many thoughts and topics to ponder throughout this day. 
Thanks Chief

Posted by Surfer Ken from San Clemente on 01/31/13 at 12:01 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

The question we’ve asked for two weeks - which Wings will show up?  If they are manhandled like last time then that shows we aren’t close to competing yet.  If we get competitive and then consider that at sometime we will get Helm back full time, then you’ve got some reason for optimism right there.

Posted by RWBill from cruising Brush Street with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 01/31/13 at 12:16 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

The question we’ve asked for going on three years - which Wings will show up?

Altered for content. We’ve had the Jeckyl & Hyde team for awhile now and admittedly too long.
I’m cautiously optimistic from the last few games as well… but I’ll keep both size 10’s on terra firma for awhile.
I will say I about came unglued when Z buried that shot from the top of the circle on the PP last game… he all but willed that puck in the net with the determination of The Captain.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 01/31/13 at 12:35 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

JJ: was it a decree from the SBN daddys that every hockey blog do a GCL analysis? I’ve seen it on WIIM, MHH and the Bitter Bitches at Game Time

yeah, the mothership dropped a free GCL subscription at our doorsteps with a note on it that said “you’re gonna review this *#$%@& or else, got it?” and then a little drawing of Todd Bertuzzi mean-mugging.

I’d like to say I’m not a sell-out or anything, but free stuff is awesome. As long as I’m still allowed to say the word “*#$%@&” in my articles and don’t have to be nice to the dipshits at OtF, I’m ok.

If Tootoo wants to dance like an idiot and throw happy punches, then whatever. It doesn’t seem to change the way games are played.  I’m just wondering how much of a favor he’s doing himself, considering spending 10 out of 20 minutes of a period in the box makes it a little bit harder for Uncle Mikey to give him ice time.

 

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 01/31/13 at 12:46 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

yeah, the mothership dropped a free GCL subscription at our doorsteps with a note on it that said “you’re gonna review this *#$%@& or else, got it?” and then a little drawing of Todd Bertuzzi mean-mugging.

I’d like to say I’m not a sell-out or anything, but free stuff is awesome.

Makes sense to me. No way you can turn that down.

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 01/31/13 at 12:55 PM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

Speaking of paying for puck on the boob tube, I am happy as $@%^ that CI offered me HD feeds for both home and away coverage this year.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 01/31/13 at 12:57 PM ET

Avatar

And there’s this:  Ken Holland will, he must, do something.

I hope you are wrong.

I’m just wondering how much of a favor he’s doing himself, considering spending 10 out of 20 minutes of a period in the box makes it a little bit harder for Uncle Mikey to give him ice time.

Tootoo has played 49:42 this year.  He has 25 PIMs.  He is in the box more than half as long as he is on the ice.  That’s… amazing.  In an awful, eventually team-destroying way, but still amazing.

 

Posted by HockeyinHD on 01/31/13 at 01:01 PM ET

Forlorn in VA's avatar

I want to watch it through the PS3 when I’m not getting my ass kicked by 13 year olds in Madden.

I hope you have better luck than I did watching through my PS3.  About 10 games into the season I started having major issues.  Every game would randomly jump back anywhere between 8 and 40 minutes every 5 minutes or so, or loop 15 seconds over and over again.  Every time I called support I was told it was my internet (I had no problems with streaming movies or tv shows), or that my router was bad, or that I had to re-install the application for the PS3, or any other number of things that never fixed the issues. I got so frustrated I stopped using it on my PS3 completely and finished watching the season on my computer (which also had problems with buffering and looping).

I cancelled it this year and went back to Center Ice.  It may not have all the features, and I’m not guaranteed the FSD feed, but at least I don’t have to deal with the frustration I had last year.

Posted by Forlorn in VA on 01/31/13 at 01:10 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Friday must be redemption for the Wings. I don’t even need a win. I just need competition and a display of grit and acknowledgment that Game 1 was unacceptable.

My thoughts, exactly. Very much looking forward to tomorrow night’s game.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 01/31/13 at 01:16 PM ET

Colquhoun's avatar

Passes are more vertical.  Other than that clusterfrack where Dallas scored the goal positioning seems to be better.  Its kind of hard to tell with the limited perspective of TV to tell but perhaps the “simplify the game” agenda is paying off.

Go, Wings.

Posted by Colquhoun on 01/31/13 at 01:28 PM ET

Zqto's avatar

Yay, someone else recognizing our D isnt as bad as everyone was bitching about, before the season started!!!!
I almost got public flogged in another thread by suggesting our D was almost as good as last year’s… I know we gotta love and embrace our players, but we need to understand they are not super heroes
Kids will come in, learn and become good players, this happen EVERY year, all around the NHL, not sure why our fanbase is so afraid of rookies. I guess it comes from the “overripe” shit we make our players go through, but I think it’s stupid

I will say I about came unglued when Z buried that shot from the top of the circle on the PP last game… he all but willed that puck in the net with the determination of The Captain.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 on 01/31/13 at 12:35 PM ET

THIS!
I dont remember who shot the puck 2 or 3 times just before Z switched sides and WILLED that puck into the net…  Its really was like the goold old times

It was like Z switched sides with the D and got the pass for the one-timer,  screaming out loud “This is how we 19 do this shit, mothe%!$ker!”

Posted by Zqto on 01/31/13 at 01:46 PM ET

LivinLaVidaLockout's avatar

Tootoo has played 49:42 this year.  He has 25 PIMs.  He is in the box more than half as long as he is on the ice.  That’s… amazing.  In an awful, eventually team-destroying way, but still amazing.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 01/31/13 at 01:01 PM ET

There really should be some modified PIM stat that accounts for incidental minors - it’s not really hurting the team when you AND the other guy are in the box and we’re playing 5-on-5.

Posted by LivinLaVidaLockout on 01/31/13 at 01:57 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

Our “D” has been OK, JFH has just made them look better.  It’d be nice if they could move the puck better.  But you cannot expect too much from an AHL guy, an undrafted rookie, a Yak, and a Q.  Yes, their positioning and overall play is better.  But, no, they don’t generate offense, and have a more difficult time getting the puck on forwards sticks in transition.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 01/31/13 at 02:39 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

I will say I about came unglued when Z buried that shot from the top of the circle on the PP last game… he all but willed that puck in the net with the determination of The Captain.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 on 01/31/13 at 12:35 PM ET

Definitely a “Fuch you Jobu, I’ll do it myself” moment.

He about came unglued when fuching Daley dove, sending him to the box.

I almost wonder if he should have.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 01/31/13 at 02:42 PM ET

Rumbear's avatar

Gotta like SSWBWS’ (acronym?) let’s drop em and go attitude.  Been a long time since we had that in a Wing jersey.  Good to know that the next time some gorilla (guerrilla?) jumps on Hank or Pavs they may get spanked by a big wooden spoon.  That stoic Scandahoovian “we’ll get em next time” approach has run its course. Praise Jeebus.

Yeah, Dater’s got issues…team sucks, ammo in Colorado is in short supply, and there has been a run on his favorite eyeliner. Same old story….except for the ammo, of course. 

Posted by Rumbear from Top O the Hasek, with 3 fingers of rum & a cigar.. on 01/31/13 at 03:48 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Yeah maybe it’s time this winter before it gets too warm, like, above 60, for a mid-Atlantic get together.  Dougie will bring the Pappy Van Winkle, I’ll bring Makers Mark, and monkey will be the high moral authority of the group.

Somehow I missed a get together last year out in Beamer-ville.

Posted by RWBill from cruising Brush Street with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 01/31/13 at 04:19 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

Work on not giving up 4 breakaways and I’ll feel good about their chances.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 01/31/13 at 04:37 PM ET

dougie's avatar

Somehow I missed a get together last year out in Beamer-ville.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 01/31/13 at 04:19 PM ET

Absolutely. We need to schedule for a March or April weekend, when Gary has them playing 4 times in three days.

If you like “Justified”, you will love it there. Two deer hunters (only one with permission) tangled on my back 40 with fists,guns, and knives during deer season. Three arrests(kinfolks always get involved), felony convictions for all, yeeehaw.

I sided with the one who leaves a jar of local moonshine on the back porch from time to time. And I hope the other one doesn’t burn down my cabin.

Posted by dougie on 01/31/13 at 05:08 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Posted by dougie on 01/31/13 at 05:08 PM ET

hahahahahahahaha   sounds like Dewey Crow got done let out of the penitentiary.

Posted by RWBill from cruising Brush Street with Super Creepy Rob Lowe. on 01/31/13 at 05:46 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

For tomorrow night, maybe it’d be a good idea to keep an eye on the Terrorsenko kid.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 01/31/13 at 08:41 PM ET

monkey's avatar

Yeah maybe it’s time this winter before it gets too warm, like, above 60, for a mid-Atlantic get together.  Dougie will bring the Pappy Van Winkle, I’ll bring Makers Mark, and monkey will be the high moral authority of the group.

*#$%@&’ a, man.

Absolutely. We need to schedule for a March or April weekend, when Gary has them playing 4 times in three days.

I miss you.

Posted by monkey from Praha, Česká republika on 01/31/13 at 08:44 PM ET

UMFan's avatar

Fundamentally, I have issues with the “spontaneity” of a fight right off the hop, without any obvious anger.

I agree. Not a big fan of fighting for fighting sake. Never been a boxing fan because there is rarely any anger involved. I like righting a wrong. I like the policing that hockey tends to have. I even like fighting when the purpose is to wake a team up from sucking ass. But fighting from the get go is kind of like sex without foreplay. Its nice but there is a lot of stuff that can be done beforehand to make it more enjoyable.

Posted by UMFan from Denver, Colorado on 01/31/13 at 10:23 PM ET

Guilherme's avatar

fighting from the get go is kind of like sex without foreplay

whoa

Posted by Guilherme from Brazsil on 01/31/13 at 11:19 PM ET

Hippy Dave's avatar

James Tiberius Howard

loving that.

I say let spoon (still hate the guy), Kronners, Bert, Franzen and Abby have double minutes on smash-em-up duty and let the rest of the guys pick up the pieces.

Posted by Hippy Dave from Portland by way of Detroit on 01/31/13 at 11:28 PM ET

42jeff's avatar

For tomorrow night, maybe it’d be a good idea to keep an eye on the Terrorsenko kid.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Looking for a “D” man on 01/31/13 at 08:41 PM ET

Pfftt….isn’t he just a rookie?

Posted by 42jeff from The greater Howard City, MI metroplex on 01/31/13 at 11:31 PM ET

HockeyTownTodd's avatar

The defense is better, much better, than we could have anticipated.  That, in itself, is staggering.

I’ve noticed that all those complaints about the contract that Kenny gave Ericsson have disappeared.

Posted by HockeyTownTodd on 02/01/13 at 07:12 AM 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