Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

10 Hours Later: Still The Worst We’ve Seen

After a few hours sleep and much serious consideration, plus more than a few ice cold PBRs (America’s favorite beer…look it up), I’ve come to this conclusion:

That was the worst game I’ve seen the Red Wings play.

You know what I dug last night? Somebody…Drunk-ass Murph or Ken said that when the suddenly not quite as fat as he used to be Ken Hitchcock was asked how long it would take to fix the Blues power play, he responded with, “one practice.”  I don’t know how accurate that is. I don’t know much of anything after watching that frigging sewer swilling armpit of a shitfest last night. But I do know it sounded cool.  It sounded confident and bad ass.  And so I wonder.  With “all the talent” the Wings have, when is my Uncle Mike going to fix ours? And while he’s at it, when is he going to fix the penalty kill?  And while he’s dealing with those two minor little ditties, when is he going to fix our two long-term superstars?  Oh, and when he’s done fixing those little, tiny, itty bitty issues…how about the fact that there isn’t a single player in red and white you can point to and say, “he’ll carry this team offensively.” 

Scott Bowman, my personal savior, used to point to some simple math.  He was reasonably happy when he could point to the PK and PP rankings, add them together and come to a number less than ten. In other words, if Detroit was ranked 6th on the PK and 3rd on the PP, joy would follow.

That number now?  It’s like 49 or something gross.  Holy. Fuch. 

Want to do something fun?  Gather your family and bring a few hookers because, really, there’s nothing better than this.  The other night I was searching YouTube looking for some ammo I was going to use on a post (that wasn’t written, naturally) about Homer’s goals getting stolen by the criminal element known as the NHL.  Hundreds of hits came up.  “Goal reversed, Holmstrom” is a great one if you’re interested.  Huge amount of material to search from.  Back to the point: as I was looking through clips,  many of his reversed goals have come—over the years—on the power play.  Consequently, most of the clips showed the Wings with the man advantage over the last several seasons.  Jesus…they used to be breath taking. Pucks moving from side to side.  Quality shots.  Creativity.  2008, 2009.  Glory years when teams would shudder at the thought of running a Wing because the bad men would turn the lights out and violate them within thirty seconds. 

Now? Well, you know what now is. Now is garbage. Now is apathy and it’s stationary. 

Some Denver idiot told me yesterday that the Wings postseason “failures” (as if a Dive fan even remembers what postseason success smells like) can be attributed to the aging of Nick Lidstrom.  Stupid, even by Denver standards.  No. Detroit’s early exits the last two Springs have been the result of shit special teams. And it continues today.  They’re the worst we’ve seen.

Five minutes.  Against St. Louis.  Five minutes of ass.  Datsyuk gaining the zone, losing the puck.  Possession on the blue line, a few choppy passes, skittish turnovers, and out comes Jim Howard to gather it and start another bogus rush up ice.  And there isn’t a single one of you surprised about the result of that, or of the PK that immediately followed. 

Whiskey dicked.  When did we start using that ditty?  It’s been at least two years.  Two years of power play ineptitude.

Someone please explain to me how this team, with that talent, is ranked 20th on the power play.  20th.  Nashville, Winnipeg, the Islanders, Ottawa and Buffalo are just a few of the offensive juggernauts well ahead of Franzen, Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Lidstrom, Cleary, Filppula. 

Where have you gone William Tell?  Yep.  That sick bastard broke more glass Bull Meachum in Rota.  But he’s a sniper, or he was.  And we don’t have one.  We don’t have a finisher.  I’m not even discussing Franzen or our expectations of him.  Huge contract. Epic disappointment. That’s reality.  Hank Zetterberg is a grinder, not a sniper.  Datsyuk….WTF?  Here’s TF…he has no one to set up. No one’s converting. 

So…Tick Tock.  We look to you once again.  Allllllll that cap space.  All that money.  All that angst as the last Cup gets smaller in the mirror.  Who’s it gonna be?  Who you gonna bring us Kenny?  Huh?  Oh, I know. I know.  It’s tough to deal in Gary’s NHL because parity dictates that every team thinks they have a shot. No one wants to trade in November. 

Not buying into that.  I want Rick Nash.  Or, as much as many of the 19 dislike him, I’ll take Iginla.  How about Spezza?  All pipe dreams. I got it.  And I know the challenges. Who to give up?  Brendan Smith?  Kindl?  Fil? At this point?

Any of them. Seriously. 

Because Kenny?  Our gunners aren’t cutting it. Our top line doesn’t have, as WestWing, pointed out last night, a single player in the top 215 in goals.  WW also added this today in the comment section below…

I’ll say it again.  The so-called top line on this team has amassed a grand total of 5 goals this season.  There are 108 individual players in the NHL who have at least that many all by themselves.

In terms of production, does any team in hockey have a more anemic top line?  No It’s a fuching embarrassment.

Posted by WestWing from Portland, Oregon on 11/16/11 at 11:57 AM ET

Over-reaction on my part?  I’m sure.  We’re nothing here if not impulsive and reactionary.  But, we’re fans.  Not journalists and definitely not team executives.  Six game losing streak?  Slash and burn.  Four game winning streak?  Block off Woodward.  I get it.  The fact remains though, that there are constants.

Special teams suck and we don’t have a sniper, outside of Franzen when he feels like it.

Over to you Tick Tock.  Bring us joy.

 

 

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Comments

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TeamDub's avatar

I’ll tip a PBR to that.

Posted by TeamDub from The gratch. on 11/16/11 at 01:19 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Our PP is run by the Ass’t Coach, that dude from Western Michigan. And it has indeed been awful all year.

I say let the bastard go because hometown pride and near-to-home-grown-talent mean less to me than winning does. If this PP isn’t fixed right away we need something different, which may mean someone new working with it. If that means letting a guy who had a single good year at a sub-championship calibre MI schoool go back to working with kids (in a very non-Jerry Sandusky-sense), then so be it.

Also, our PK started out the year very aggressive. Now it really looks like only Miller, Eaves, Helm, Pav and Stu are trying to kill penalties. It’s un-Red Wings-like and I hate it.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 01:31 PM ET

Wings_in_NYC's avatar

The PP is being coached by a guy who thinks he’s still coaching college kids. That’s not going to cut it in the NHL. I think they made a mistake hiring that guy.

Posted by Wings_in_NYC on 11/16/11 at 01:36 PM ET

lilja4ever's avatar

I’ll blame the assistant coaches for now. Things can look pretty good five-on-five at times.

Posted by lilja4ever on 11/16/11 at 01:37 PM ET

lilja4ever's avatar

Sorry Sully, didn’t refresh before posting. Agreed, though.

Posted by lilja4ever on 11/16/11 at 01:39 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Success bites.  A lot of other teams have had top draft picks for many, many years and we haven’t.  That has got to have an impact.

Parity bites.  Those who think we should have kept Hossa over Franzen forget that Franzen’s cap hit was about $4 mil/yr and Hossa was wanting over $7 mil.  Even if Holland had wanted to keep Hossa, he couldn’t have.

A trade?  What team in the NHL is dying to have any player the Wings would be willing to give up?  And Holland would not have kept so much money in the bank over the summer if there had been top quality players available.

I love the Red Wings.  Always have and always will.  But as Michael Bloomberg said when the housing bubble burst:  “Nothing goes up in a straight line forever.”

I believe the Wings can be as good and as successful as any team in the NHL - if they want to.  Despite the obvious concerns, there are a lot of good things happening with our team.

But the reality is that no matter how much talent we have, no matter who the coaches are, no matter what trades are made, we’re not gonna win the Cup every year. 

That said, I still hope we do - as I always will. 

LET’S GO RED WINGS !!!!!

cool smile

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 11/16/11 at 01:40 PM ET

Primis's avatar

It still appears to me that Babcock and/or the assistants don’t have a good hold on the room.  Too many guys doing their own thing.

Helm, Abby, Eaves, and Miller seem to have bought in to something all-in, whether it’s coach-induced or of their own doing.  The rest seem to be resisting.

And too many coasting.

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 01:45 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

I don’t even know that it’s the assistants’ fault that the PP isn’t working right.

The worst penalty kill in the NHL going up against the power play that is built specifically to prey on their weaknesses is still going to find a hell of a lot of success if the team only runs the power play at 75% speed.

[if you don’t like amateur coach’s corner, now’s a good time to stop reading]

The man advantage works consistently when you victimize the 2 poor saps who have to cover three people and force them to move around.  Want an example?

http://www.nhl.com/ice/boxscore.htm?id=2011020233

Watch the PPG by Loui Eriksson and pay attention to Stuart and Kronwall’s responsibility. As soon as Eaves gives Daley the opportunity to get the puck to the net, this goal is a done deal.  Notice Daley isn’t trying to snipe the top corner from there. He throws a low wrister into an area of the ice where he knows there are three Dallas players and only two Red Wings defenders. The shot doesn’t go over the top of the net and force the PP to reset.  Also notice Daley is moving the entire time and forcing the issue with the man covering him.  This is because Eaves has already been drawn low on the play thanks to a speedy and aggressive cycle.

If PKers want to play our guys aggressively, then the answer is to move the puck to open areas and use your numerical advantage to retrieve it and get it to a guy in a good scoring area thanks to the aggressive guys being out of position.

If PKers want to play our guys passively, then the answer is to skate at them with an overload where you can collapse them into a very small area and let your point men get shots from the tops of the circles rather than the top of the zone.

Both options are predicated on moving your feet constantly and the Wings’ PP does not do that right now.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/16/11 at 01:46 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Among all the complaints about Wings players since 10:30 last night, some even valid, the main theme from last night’s game is Hitchcock’s stamping of his identity on that team in short order.  Wings rarely had any space and time, and amazingly, this was most apparent when the Blues were short handed. Playing 4x5 it still seemed they had more players on the ice than the Wings, they still double teamed along the half boards.

The Blues are playing Playoff Series hockey this past week. Can they keep that intensity up for an entire season?

From the Wings perspective, hell, read everybody else’s comments.  Babcock and the new blood coaching staff have to figure out how to counter when a team is playing like that.

Was the ice rough?  Was the wind so bad at Soldier Field Sunday that it only affected Matthew Stafford and his throwing glove?

Fans forget that there’s another team on the ice or the field and they want to win too.  Things aren’t always going to go well. 

As Babs has always said, hockey usually rewards the team that plays the hardest.  Abdelkader and Helm and others around them have been our best line the last few games. More have to play like them.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 11/16/11 at 01:48 PM ET

Primis's avatar

The PP isn’t working because the Wings aren’t working hard enough to get into position for the good shots.

I yell at my son’s basketball team because on offense they tend to stand around and barely move.  They move, but they’re not making quick, forceful cuts, working hard to get open so it’s very easy to shadow them and pick off a pass or block a shot.

That’s what the Wings aren’t doing right now.  They are not making any effort to keep their shooting lanes clear an open.  They are VERY easy to defend when they fall into this, and this isn’t the first time in the past couple seasons that they’ve done this.  It’s too easy to knock their shots down.

On the PK and defensively then… we miss Salei and Lilja.  They would block shots like crazy.  We never really replaced that.

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 01:52 PM ET

jennyquarx's avatar

I have to agree with the comments regarding Blashill.  Obviously there are bigger problems but I don’t really like the idea of a dude with zero NHL experience coaching an NHL team on anything.  Sure, it could work but maybe it’s not. If they’re going to go that route, maybe amateur coach J.J. would be a better option.  Something has to change. 

But also, yeah.  When is the last time we had someone in the top ten in goals?  It sucks.

Posted by jennyquarx on 11/16/11 at 01:52 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

Wow, last night was so bad even jenny weighed in.  Nice!  C’mon in more often.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 11/16/11 at 01:55 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

If Johan Franzen’s first name started with the letter A, he would be #9 in goals right now according to NHL.com.

wink

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/16/11 at 01:55 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

I do like going fetal and venting with you lot, though.

I like how our arguments are so self-centered and eccentric and team oriented, all at once.

Like this:  “With this talent…” implying we have all the necessary talent to succeed, followed by this: “...a trade is in order…” saying we need to revamp and make room for a playmaker, implying we need more talent.

Which is it? Fuch if I know, I just want more W’s and more spirited efforts. We played so well against a physical and quick Edmonton team, a physical and speedy Dallas team and I’m licking my chops for a rematch against San Jose now that we’re actually getting the bounces we want.

Then St. Lose happens. Now I want a few more weeks preparation before going into the Sharktank.  Can we all agree we have the best team in hockey when we play with passion? Trades are for teams that are really looking to change the dynamic. I think the changes we need can come from behind the bench, but feel the chemistry is actually probably good. People haven’t been with their current linemates for very long (i.e. Hudler with Abby & Helm, and most of our Defense Pairings are new).

Also, SHOOT THE FUCHING PUCK! It really helps! 22 shots was no bueno.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 01:58 PM ET

Avatar

I cannot agree with you more on this one, four wins didn’t make me forget the six games we lost before hand.  Definitely not impressed with our new assistants and the power play is brutal.  Last night’s game was as entertaining as watching paint dry, while taking a cheese grater to my man parts.  We need a sniper, we still haven’t replaced Hossa (love em - hate em as a Hawk) and counting on Big Bert and Cleary to score has been joke this season.  I would take any Canadian Born power forward who can hit the crap out of someone, throw down as an enforcer and isn’t afraid to go to the net to score a goal.  I would take a Nash, Oshie, Brown and give up a first rounder, B. Smith, Hudler or Mursak….we need grit, not another playmaker.

Posted by JB from White Lake on 11/16/11 at 01:59 PM ET

jennyquarx's avatar

Geez J.J., I can’t be expected to look up things like stats and report them correctly.  Who do you think I am? smile  We’ll see how that looks at the end of the season though. 

I started a new job, I can’t be on KK at work, but I’ll try to be around more often.  And last night’s game certainly did suck.

Posted by jennyquarx on 11/16/11 at 01:59 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Oh and I meant those 2 arguments are separated by a lot of ranting, not actually part of the same argument at all.

1 - Talent to succeed: check.
2 - Trade talks for upping our overall wealth of talent - check.

At least no one here is debating goal tending issues.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 02:00 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Geez J.J., I can’t be expected to look up things like stats and report them correctly.  Who do you think I am?

#Lekrub’d

I kid because I love.  cheese

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/16/11 at 02:03 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Also, SHOOT THE FUCHING PUCK! It really helps! 22 shots was no bueno.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 10:58 AM ET

Sully, did you see the number of SB’s STL had?  It was what, 16-1 in favor of STL after only 1 period?

They don’t need to shoot more.  They need to take better shots from better positions, shots that can’t be easily knocked-down.  And like I said above, they need to work harder to get those shots.

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 02:07 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I would take any Canadian Born power forward who can hit the crap out of someone, throw down as an enforcer and isn’t afraid to go to the net to score a goal.  I would take a Nash, Oshie, Brown and give up a first rounder, B. Smith, Hudler or Mursak….we need grit, not another playmaker.

Posted by JB from White Lake on 11/16/11 at 10:59 AM ET

Thank God you’re not GM.  Oshie isn’t a power forward and is a head-case, and possibly a diva.  Brown wouldn’t fit into the Wings’ possession style at all.  Nash, maybe… but not at the price you want.

Hudler?  Ok.  Mursak and Smith?  Are you crazy?  The Wings need both those guys going forward far more than they need a power forward right now.  Smith in particular is probably the lynchpin to the Wing’s blueline future.

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 02:12 PM ET

wingsfanindenver's avatar

Has Franzen become the new Enigma? I keep seeing the same flashes of brilliance for 90 seconds, followed 3/4 speed play for the remainder of the game. At times like this I ask myself WWSD (What would Scotty Do)? The only answer I come to is: demote Franzen and bring Helm up. His speed and aggression on the puck makes him a dangerous forechecker and while his shot isn’t great, his passes are good enough to feed Z or Pav or both. He’s also tough enough to go net front, and the way he moves his feet he’ll draw penalties. This will have the added effect of rattling Franzen’s cage enough to get him to put out an effort each and every shift.

If Franzen continues to slouch off, Tick Tock can have a heart to heart with him and explain that Columbus, Calgary, Phoenix and the Islanders have all expressed interest, or will once he calls them, and it’s time to either play or pack. There are enough guys on this team who put out all they have every shift to tolerate Enigma like play from the Mule.

That and the PP continues to have issues with back side relief. At this level it’s very rare to beat a goalie clean, you need either a screen, tip, or catch the goalie moving from post to post and the defensemen from side to side. The wings power play right now has very few side to side passes and seems content to rip shots from the point that get blocked or go wide.

Posted by wingsfanindenver on 11/16/11 at 02:14 PM ET

FranzensMouthguard's avatar

The issue is that when they want to play, they can beat teams (see ANA and DAL), but when they are lazy (way too much), THEY GIVE UP. That team mentally folded like a tent last night, thats on the players, then the coaches and even higher up.

We were spoiled with Scotty, but we all know damn sure Bowman would never have taken this shiat.

We need a motivator, plain and simple. I don’t care who it is at this point, player, coach, gm, owner. SOMEONE SAY SOMETHING.

Posted by FranzensMouthguard from Chicago, IL on 11/16/11 at 02:19 PM ET

jennyquarx's avatar

I kid because I love. 

Aww…  The feeling is mutual. smile

Posted by jennyquarx on 11/16/11 at 02:21 PM ET

wingsfanindenver's avatar

We need a motivator, plain and simple. I don’t care who it is at this point, player, coach, gm, owner. SOMEONE SAY SOMETHING.

Easiest to start with playing time. Those who put out, play. Those who don’t, sit. As long as the message is clear that this isn’t about production but effort, it’s a good message for the coaches to send. Effort eventually leads to goals.

Posted by wingsfanindenver on 11/16/11 at 02:35 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

Last night’s game was as entertaining as taking a cheese grater to my man parts

Please. Some of us do find that entertaining.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie on 11/16/11 at 02:43 PM ET

AndrewFromAnnArbor's avatar

Sadly, that was not the worst game I’ve ever seen them play, but I don’t think anybody wishes a return to the Dead Wings era.

Rummie, here’s my Andalusian Bitch:

PK, PP.  Fix it, bitch.

In all seriousness, here’s something of an explanation:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDw-hTuwcvA

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna go slice up my eyeballs.

Posted by AndrewFromAnnArbor from Fortress Europe on 11/16/11 at 02:50 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Posted by AndrewFromAnnArbor from Fortress Europe on 11/16/11 at 11:50 AM ET

Pixies-fest continues, eh?

And

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 02:54 PM ET

WestWing's avatar

I’ll say it again.  The so-called top line on this team has amassed a grand total of 5 goals this season.  There are 108 individual players in the NHL who have at least that many all by themselves.

In terms of production, does any team in hockey have a more anemic top line?  No It’s a fuching embarrassment.

Posted by WestWing from Portland, Oregon on 11/16/11 at 02:57 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 11:07 AM ET

To the shots I was more referring to 6 shots on 6 PP chances, inlcuding the 5 min majour. More shots are definitely needed. Or shot-passes, hell anything that looks like it’ll cause any kind of harm on StL, instead of all this stop short, pass back to the point, then dump it in the corners and lose it. Lots of bad passes too.

I think it took too long to sink in the idea that with StL’s coverage, you can’t make long, cross-ice passes. Shorter passes worked way better but even still, no one was getting to the net and pucks weren’t getting through, partly due to blocked shots and partly due to a lack of taking shots when they could have.

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 02:58 PM ET

IwoCPO's avatar

I’ll say it again.  The so-called top line on this team has amassed a grand total of 5 goals this season.  There are 108 individual players in the NHL who have at least that many all by themselves.

In terms of production, does any team in hockey have a more anemic top line?  No It’s a fuching embarrassment.

Posted by WestWing from Portland, Oregon on 11/16/11 at 11:57 AM ET

WestWing, I originally credited Mandingo with that discussion point. I’ve corrected the post.  And you’re right. It’s pathetic.

Posted by IwoCPO from Sunny San Diego, bitches on 11/16/11 at 03:03 PM ET

Avatar

Am I the only one that thinks the Wings real problem is puck movement?

Just pay attention to how hard it is for the Wings to get into the offensive zone… This game against the Blues, EVERY single push entry was like this:

- Late man get a pass at red line and pushes mid ice
- As soon as he gets into the zone, he passed to the winger advancing
- Blues had 2 guys on the late man coming in, and 1 close to each side, and as soon as he passed, 1 in the middle would go help the other guy attacking the Wing receiving the pass
- Receiver Wing player had 3 options:
A) Lose the puck to 2 guys
B) Dump it in to no one
C) Try to passo to the center, but he had a shadow and woul lose the puck, too

This happened at least 10 times last game… And I didn’t see a single dump and chase all night long
I dunno if this was because the short defense roster, but I hope it was… I personally think puck movement has always been a red wing problem, when going from defense to offense. Last night was a total nightmare

Btw, to people complaining about the PP… When I saw BRAD STUART on the PP last night, I knew the shit was hitting the fan
Anyway, next game is gonna be a huge opportunity for Smith, I hope he does something good with it

Posted by Zqto from Brazil on 11/16/11 at 03:06 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

And I didn’t see a single dump and chase all night long

I’m sad that you missed the Wings’ only goal.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/16/11 at 03:14 PM ET

DocF's avatar

Alright, I agree.  The assistant coaches suck.  Who wanted them?  The head coach.  Why did he want them?  He wants no competition around him.  Ultimately, the problem is that the players no longer listen to Babcock.  All coaches (except maybe Scotty Bowman) wear out their welcome in 3-4 years.  Mikey is past that time frame and must go, especially for picking those turkeys for assistants.

The fans are going to have to suffer through the rest of a lousy season as there is not quick fix left now that Captain Kangaroo is employed by St. Louis.  As punishment, they could bring in Mike Keenan, but it would take 6-8 years to fix the damage he would do.

Suggestions are welcome
Doc

Posted by DocF from Now: Lynn Haven, FL; was Reidsville, NC on 11/16/11 at 03:35 PM ET

arice89's avatar

Should’ve kept Hossa. Hawks fans on HF are saying he’s their MVP this season. Has Franzen ever been more important to this team than Datsyuk and Zetterberg?

Hossa brings it every night even when he’s not scoring. Can you say the same about Franzen?

It’s painfully obvious that letting the guy go was a poor choice. His cap hit is only $5.2 million.

Should’ve found a way.

Posted by arice89 on 11/16/11 at 03:52 PM ET

Avatar

I’m sad that you missed the Wings’ only goal.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas

As far as I remember, they dumped it to no one (just like all night long), and Helm or Abs managed to get it back frmo their D, after pressure on forecheck, wasnt it?

Unfortunetly I can’t check it right now, from workplace

Posted by Zqto from Brazil on 11/16/11 at 04:07 PM ET

Primis's avatar

I said it on Twiiter but… I think we’ve overlooked a possibility.

The Wings really do need a Aaron Downey in the room.  A shift disturber that also is well-respected, a warrior, and will step in to defend teammates.

They don’t need an enforcer.  They don’t need a goon.  They don’t need a Matt Cooke/Steve Downie/Max Lapierre piece of garbage.  They need a well-respected warrior who is well-liked on and off the ice, does dirty work, and that you can throw out onto the ice and can get you 4 hits in that one shift.

Abdelkader can’t do it.  To be blunt, he’s to skilled I think, and he does too many other things.  But they need a glue guy, and it maybe really is that if nothing else, Draper was that huge a glue guy.

Should’ve kept Hossa. Hawks fans on HF are saying he’s their MVP this season. Has Franzen ever been more important to this team than Datsyuk and Zetterberg?

Hossa brings it every night even when he’s not scoring. Can you say the same about Franzen?

It’s painfully obvious that letting the guy go was a poor choice. His cap hit is only $5.2 million.

Should’ve found a way.

Posted by arice89 on 11/16/11 at 12:52 PM ET

Thanks, I have a new Dumbest Thing I’ve read today.

Franzen is:

* 1 year younger.
* Playoff-proven.
* Smaller cap hit.
* Not the proven malcontent Hossa has been and can be.

I also think Hossa’ play is already on its decline, and he’s not in his prime anymore.

Posted by Primis on 11/16/11 at 04:11 PM ET

Sullyosis's avatar

Ultimately, the problem is that the players no longer listen to Babcock

F’rill?

Posted by Sullyosis from A hateful lair in Post Apocalyptic US (or Arizona) on 11/16/11 at 04:17 PM ET

Jeff  OKWingnut's avatar

DET PK is 77.4% (25).

If you assume (and I’m too lazy to look it up) that DET take 4 minors/game = 1 GAA every freaking game, or worse.

The PP is without direction, they look clueless. 

Last night DET could have had a 5 on 3 and probably still not scored, that is how bad STL manhandled them.

A sniper would be nice.

A Shanahan would better.  Sniper that stands up for his team.

The one thing that pisses me off worse than DET’s ineptitude last night (and in several other instances):

NOT ONE FUCHING WING stands up for the team.  That never used to happen, never.

And maybe that is part of the swagger problem, just saying.

Posted by Jeff OKWingnut from Quest for 12 on 11/16/11 at 04:22 PM ET

Wingfan191's avatar

Another problem with the Wings home grown talent is that they really never get you anything beyond a 3rd line grinder.  Helm/Abdelkader/Tatar/Mursak/Emmerton, I’m sorry, but I don’t see any of these guys putting 30 goals up a season.  Nyquist might be the exception, but odds aren’t in his favor.

I’m going to use a silly example, but when I play NHL 12, I set my Season Mode rosters every single night to mimic the real NHL ones, correct line combo’s and all (I do this for one, to see how well the game can actually simulate real life and two, so my season lasts as long as the real NHL season).  So I’m well aware of what players on other teams are on what lines.  You guys would be amazed at how often a team will put a 3rd or 4th line player on the top line just for a few games to see how it goes.  Detroit, NEVER does that.  And you can’t point to Holmstrom, that’s not a fair comparison.  I’m talking guys like Helm/Eaves/Emmerton/Abdelkader.  And not just trying it for a 2 shifts then giving up if they don’t score a goal.  These other teams try it for as many as 5 games before switching it back.

In my mind, Detroit only has 3 “top 6 forwards”, Z/Pavel/Mule.  That’s it.  The rest of this team is completely interchangeable.  Which is why they really need another top 6 guy, specifically a winger.  Until I see Flippula putting up 25-30 goals a season, he’s not a top 6 guy.

Posted by Wingfan191 from Bothell, WA (originally from Troy, MI) on 11/16/11 at 04:23 PM ET

BrendonR's avatar

I agree with the comments on the players tuning out Babbles a bit, but I don’t think the assistants were brought in to reduce the chance of him losing his spot to Beast or McLean.  It was to freshen things up, and avoid the whole tuning out thing.  Now, who do we see responding to these new, and in Blashill’s case, younger guys?  The young guys, Helmer and Abby and Miller.  It’s our vets who are tuning out, and I don’t think its Pav, Hank and Mule so much.  If anything, they’re probably bored playing with the same old guys.

Looking at capgeek, this will be the last year for Homer, Bert, and Hudler (most likely).  Add Cleary to that list and you’ve got a bunch of vets who look fairly tuned out.  I don’t think any of us want to see Uncle Mike go - to me he’s still the top coach in the league and Kenny knew what he was doing when he extended him.  We need to trim some of the sloth and bring in younger, more eager players.  Next year will be very different.  But it wouldn’t hurt to start the process now.  I still think Fil is too quick and skilled to dump, but those listed above need to go.  Well, maybe I’m being too harsh on Homer, since he’s getting up there in the years and is still expected to jump in front of everyone’ blasts from the point.  But still - it’s player turnover we need, not the coach.

Posted by BrendonR on 11/16/11 at 04:23 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