The Malik Report
This game was about control. Detroit could either take full control of the series by opening up a 3-1 series lead, or Tampa Bay could wrest control back from Detroit, tying the series at 2 going into a set of 2 of 3 games in Tampa Bay.
Tampa wrested control from the Red Wings thanks to a staggering set of game-tying goals in 77 seconds and an OT marker, yielding a 3-2 win and a series tie that stunned the Wings, stunned their fans, and may have cost the Wings Luke Glendening in the process of a stupid, stupid, stupid scrum that predictably played into the visitors' hands.
I am writing a recap of the Wings-Lightning game presently, but I believe this goal deserves its own post (nice one, Ben Bishop):
Here's a short note that's a bit of a bummer: Axel Holmstrom registered an assist, won 72.73% of his faceoffs and played 18:33, but Skelleftea AIK dropped a 3-2 OT decision to the Vaxjo Lakers, losing the SHL final in six games.
Holmstrom finished with a rookie-record 7 goals, 11 assists and 18 points in 15 games, and I'm not sure if he'll head to Grand Rapids to take part in the Griffins' playoff run. We'll find out within the next day or two.
John Forslund talked with Steven Stamkos after practice today.
Expect some "deception" from the Bolts on the power play.
added 4:52pm, Ken Campbell of The Hockey News on Datsyuk vs. Stamkos...
Updated 12x at 2:14 PM: The morning skate ahead of tonight's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning (7 PM EDT on FSD/FS Florida/NBCSN/CBC/TVA Sports/97.1 FM) involved discussions of momentum, talk about Steven Stamkos' offense or the lack thereof and the Wings preparing for an incredibly desperate and determined Lightning team this evening.
The actual in-skate Tweets were few and far between...
And in the multimedia department, per Fox Sports Detroit...
This is rather silly, however:
I had thought that everybody knew this as the Victoria Times-Colonist's Cleve Dheensaw reported it two days ago, but a Tweet from Griffins broadcaster Bob Kaser + a note from Winging It in Motown = the Griffins decided to make Joe Hicketts' status official (via RedWingsFeed):
The Detroit Red Wings have reassigned defenseman Joe Hicketts from the Western Hockey League’s Victoria Royals to the Grand Rapids Griffins.
Hicketts, 18, signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Wings on September 24 after attending Detroit’s development camp and the 2014 NHL Prospects Tournament in Traverse City last summer. In 62 games with Victoria this season, the 5-foot-8, 175-pound blueliner ranked second among WHL defensemen in scoring with 64 points (12-52—64) in 62 games, while posting 48 penalty minutes and a plus-17 rating. In 165 career games with the Royals from 2012-15, Hicketts has amassed 112 points (24-88—112), 105 PIM and a plus-31 rating. In March, Hicketts was named to the 2014-15 WHL Western Conference Second All-Star Team.
A native of Kamloops, British Columbia, Hicketts has represented Canada on the international stage a number of times, most recently winning a gold medal on his country’s home ice at the 2015 World Junior Championship. He also won a bronze medal with Canada at the 2014 Under-18 World Championship in Finland and captained Team Pacific at the 2013 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Quebec.
Updated 6x at 12:03 PM: The Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning face off in a battle for control of their first-round series this evening (7 PM EDT start on FSD/FS Florida/NBCSN/CBC/TVA Sports/97.1 FM; Brad Meier and Dan O'Halloran are scheduled to referee tonight's game).
The Wings hit the ice first at Joe Louis Arena for the morning skate, per WDIV's David Bartkowiak, Jr....
Lines appear same as Game 3 with Nyquist, Zetterberg, Abdelkader first #redwings
And the Detroit News's Gregg Krupa...
@DetroitRedWings on ice, morning skate Joe Louis Arena. Game 4 conference quarter-final versus Tampa, 7pm.
The Wings remain the underdog in the media, with CBS Sports' Adam Gretz picking the Lightning to even-up the series tonight...
The Detroit Red Wings hope to earn a stranglehold on the Tampa Bay Lightning this evening (7 PM EDT start on FSD/FS Florida/NBCSN/CBC/TVA Sports/97.1 FM), and "the stats" would bear out a massive advantage for the Wings if they are able to take this game, as DetroitRedWings.com's Bill Roose noted:
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, teams that go up 3-1 in a best-of-seven Stanley Cup playoffs series hold an all-time series record of 249-27 – that’s 90.2 percent.
The Lightning were aggravated and upset during Wednesday's practice, and while the Tampa Bay Times' Joe Smith reports that the Lightning understand that they've wasted far too many golden opportunities on the power play...
One Red Wings developmental affiliate played on Wednesday night, and they're having a baffling playoff run: The Toledo Walleye were the ECHL's best regular-season team, but a team that experienced a significant amount of turnover is having trouble learning how to win together in the playoffs.
Toledo lost a 5-4 decision to the Wheeling Nailers on Wednesday (Richard Nedomlel finished at -1 with 2 shots as the lone Wings prospect on the team), and the Walleye are actually down 2-1 in the series, as the Walleye's website notes:
About The Malik Report
The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.