Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Bell Out, Pavelski In For Sharks

George Sipple reports this evening that San Jose’s Mark Bell’s injuries will force him to the press box tonite in favor of Joe Pavelski.

Bell had been out with a groin injury in Game 1, then returned to the lineup in Game 2 on Saturday. In three playoff games, Bell is minus-2 with no points. In four playoff games, Pavelski was plus-2 with one goal.

“At this point in the year, you can’t wait for someone to get going,” Wilson said. “He’s had hip and groin problems, back problems.

 

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Question Everything…Especially Implosions

Woops.  Remember Legace-confidante Andy Strickland?  Sure you do.  Now’s a good time to tell you that for a little while in January, it looked like young Andy was going to avail himself to us, perhaps to further address his original claim that the Wings would “implode by Christmas.”

For some reason, he didn’t feel compelled to take advantage of that opportunity.

But hey…if you’re not doing anything around 11am EST tomorrow…

I will be taping the show at 10:00 central time Tuesday Morning. Feel free to call the show and ask a question or give a comment at 1-800-491-1380 or 314-969-1380 locally in St. Louis.

You can also e-mail the show and I will read the question on the air.

The address is strickland.andy@gmail.com

 

 

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Homer’s Good To Go

Paul just posted over at KK Hockey that Tomas Holmstrom has been cleared to play and will be flying out to San Jose today and is likely for Game 4. Yes, the obvious questions are: when does the flight leave, and if he's cleared, can he play tonite? Bruce MacLeod with a bit more, and news that Zetterberg practiced for the first time in a week this morning. Helene St. James says it's definite that Holmstrom will NOT be playing tonite. Last blog entry from Ted Kulfan? 27 April.

Babcock said definitely no Holmstrom (eye) and Lebda (ankle) for Game 2.
Easy Ted. Don't pull a muscle.

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Datsyuk’s Goal The Catalyst?

According to the Stats NHL Blog, the Wings’ two-goal comeback on Saturday was a 2007 rarity.

John Kreisler noted how getting a two-goal lead meant so much in the postseason. He reported that in the first 47 playoff games this spring, teams taking a lead of two goals or more were 34-0.

According to Kreisler, there were 126 regular-season games—better than one in every 10 played—in which teams trailed by two or more goals and won. On two dates (March 1 and April 7), it happened five times apiece.

Read more here, including the suggestion that if the Wings return the Cup to its rightful home in Hockeytown, Datsyuk’s game winner could very well be the goal that will have set the stage.

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Fitzpatrick Breaks Attendance-Gate Wide Open

Now, we bring you the return of Jamie Fitzpatrick. Jamie, you may recall was mentioned several months ago after his misguided attack on the fans of Edmonton—a fan base, I might add, that proved to be worthy, respectable adversaries even as they were Punching Us In The Face last spring.

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Khan(!) On Sharkspage

PJ Swenson, one of the deans of hockey bloggers, posted an interview this morning with Ansar Khan(!).  Here’s a segment of the interview dealing with Wing injuries.

Zetterberg’s back is clearly bothering him. He’s played remarkably well in spite of it. But how long can he keep it up? I think Kyle Calder is hurting. I think past Wings team wouldn’t be able to overcome these injuries, but this group has more resiliency, so I wouldn’t bet against them.

PJ apparently didn’t ask Khan(!) about the honor of serving as Deep Digger captain.

 

 

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Line ‘Em Up

Update 1125 EST:  A2Y Graphics Coordinator, TeamDub, has provided us with riveting photo evidence that The Enigma is, indeed, missing in action.  Keep reading and you’ll see. 

The snappy title to this post should serve as a nifty preview for an in-depth, statistically-based, void-of-sarcasm analysis of Wing line combinations for this evening, the coming weeks and into the future.  And we’ll get to that. Oh yes we will.

But first:  Bob Lang.

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Sunday Digging

Flew cross country today.  That matters to none of you.  Homer didn’t fly cross country today and that matters to us all. 

Khan(!)

Tomas Holmstrom didn’t make the trip. He’s scheduled to see an eye specialist in Detroit again on Monday. Babcock said “re-bleeding’’ in the eye is a concern. He said if everything checks out OK, they hope to put Holmstrom on a plane and have him here for Game 4 Wednesday.

John Niyo’s postgame blog last night points out that our boy Bobbie Lang played only 2 shifts in the third.  Summer can’t get here quickly enough.  Niyo makes another good point about San Jose’s own enigma.

Great games by Zetterberg and Chelios, I thought.

On the flip side, is anyone out there still lamenting the fact that the Wings didn’t get Bill Guerin. Now you see why the Wings weren’t nearly as interested in him at the trade deadline as some had guessed.

I don’t know that Guerin was ever a serious consideration in Detroit. I know I felt that way because the bitter little Blues fans would have revolted if JD had dealt him to the Wings.  Regardless, he’s been invisible for San Jose the entire playoffs: 7 games, 2 points, 0 goals, -3.

 

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Gambling Hurts

Omens…omens all around.  AlanaH and I mentioned we had ourselves a little wager regarding Round 1 and the respective point totals of one of the Ginger Twins and Datsyuk?

Yes.  Yes we did.

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Sharks Sweep

Read the comments from the Shark fans below and you’d think that was the case.  San Jose has swept Detroit.  In a new, unique device to ostracize the remaining eleven thousand American hockey fans, Gary Bettman—if you believe the hockey historians in San Jose—has decreed that the Western Semi’s have been reduced to a best of one.

Shark fans, that small sect of hockey geniuses who populate the hotbed that is Northern California, took to their keyboards after Game 1, tip-tapping witty little notes like this:

I’m not going to gloat or boast or dress up in my teal thong and ride down the Castro into a rainbow of hockey happiness. That would be dumb because we still have to whip your ass three more times. It is going to happen. Just like we said. The Sharks are bigger and stronger. The Sharks defense is better. And the Sharks had one power play and, guess what Puckheads, they scored. Just like Mike and I said they would.

Disturbing.

 

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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

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