Kukla's Korner

Abel to Yzerman

Digging Friday

Interesting line in the sand drawn between two factions of Wing fans.  One side, the majority, is entrenched in the Mike Babcock camp, fully ready to stand by him until our world crumbles.  The other side, smaller in number but definitely hockey-smart and persuasive, is eager to separate the coach from any success the team has had.  In fact, they’ve opted to claim the Wings succeed in spite of Babcock.

It’s a serious subject, and one you’ll probably find discussed in much greater detail in the comment section here.  So, go there now if you’re all lathered up and ready to use big words and stuff.

Me? I found something else to do.

Stop reading.  I’m going to tell you now I’m about to rip some Pens fans. All of them? No.  There are some good ones and we’ve pointed them out in the past. But I’ll tell you what, for the dicks? I’ve still got unfinished business and my summer-time agenda has extended to the Fall. Don’t like it.  Don’t read.

What happens when you’re fans of the reigning champs and your team starts to suck and you’re too embarrassed to go back to the opposing team’s blogs because you just don’t have much to say when your precious little Pens are bending over for any team crosses their path?  It was so easy over the summer to point to Detroit’s economic problems.  It was just a piece of cake to discuss the auto industry and use it as a punch line while hundreds of thousands of Americans were out of work.  Funny stuff.  Soooo cold in the D, wasn’t it? 

Well, it’s warming up now ain’t it?  And while the temps start to rise (metaphor) along with Detroit’s winning percentage?  The genius Pens fans are finding a creative way to cope with the sudden demise of their one-trick champs.

Over at Letgopens.com (and believe me, they’re epic A2Y fans over there), they’ve devised a nifty plan to help their boys get on the right track…a series of images that really speaks to the heart of who the Pens are as an organ-I-zation.

image

Oh, there’s plenty more.  Plenty.  As many pictures as there were comments made here over the summer about the humorous plight of unemployed Michigan residents? Not quite. But lots of ‘em to see.  Highly recommend you stop over for a visit.

Hard to follow up brilliance like that, but try we will…and we’re going to do so by pointing you to a few new Wing blogs I’ve been delinquent in recognizing.

We talked about Below the Crossbar yesterday.  Here’s a ditty from their post-Canuck review.

Seriously, Jimmy Howard was above average in net.  On a night when the team needed some serious goaltending because they did not show up, Jimmy gave them the stops they needed.  Being outshot 15-5 in the first, and 26-12 at the worst point, the Red Wings needed a big-time game from the goalie, and Jimmy delivered.  Congrats to him on two well played games.  I am more at ease with our backup situation.  I want to see this a few more times still though before I completely feel at ease.

I was so physically excited to discuss our Uncle this morning that I completely neglected our boy Jimmah’s performance.

Yes.  Awesome.  Noted. 

Still. Not. Convinced.  I think Howard’s been great the last two games. Good to see and I stand by my prediction that the Wings will win the Jennings.  He’ll do what a backup should, at least one for a good team.  He’s gonna win 70 percent of his starts and that’s a good spell for Osgood.  Nothing will be expected of him in the playoffs. He’ll never, not once, see postseason ice.  Not this year.  Maybe never.  I hope Jimmy Howard does well, but I keep going back to what is consistently said about him by the Salers and whoever else has watched him in GR.  This is not a guy who reeks of sustained superior performance.  In fact, I gave it a brief look today.  Over his last two seasons, he did what he’s accomplished the last two games (consecutive 1 goal or less performances) twice.  In two years.

He’s playing well.  Good. We need him to.  I’m holding off on the coronation for now, though.

Ellen at The Big Red Machine made a casual observation this morning about something you guys aptly addressed in last night’s Live Blog.

Gord Dwyer and Dave Jackson had a field day calling weak penalties against Detroit in the 2nd.  Conversely, Vancouver only got tagged for 3 minors, even though I saw several plays for which Detroit was called.  Totally weak.

The call that stands out, of course, was the high sticking penalty against Stuart…the one that was called by the center ice official when his partner was ten feet away with his arm down.  The “high stick”, of course, was actually William Tell blasting a teammate across the neck with his shaft.  Might sound pleasant to a Dive fan.  But disgusting to watch that scenario play out, and still one of the most frustrating aspects of our sport.  Why, when you know the closer ref saw the play, can’t he let the idiot at center ice know he’d boned the call? 

I’m in the Unibomber’s corner. I am.  I have been and I’ll stay there.  I think he looks better than many expected and I’m kinda convinced that, sooner or later, he’s going to start popping a few.  Rob at The Production Line agrees. I think.

So far this season, Bertuzzi has looked OK. He hasn’t looked looked like an elite scorer…or even close to it. That goal against the BJ’s…even if it went in…was ugly as sin. But watching him this week and during the Bruins game, I noticed one thing a lot of people didn’t expect - he’s hustling. To me, that’s a sign he’s buying into the system. He’s been the first man down on the forecheck a handful of times and I noticed him humping it on the backcheck as well.

There.  Branch out bitches.  There’s more to read than A2Y and whatever elitist literature discussion you guys had yesterday when you thought I wasn’t looking. 

And don’t forget.  Every Cup champ needs bling.  It’s a new law.

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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