The Malik Report
Per the Grand Rapids Griffins' PR department, the Griffins defeated Houston 7-0 in a winner-take-all Game 5 and advanced to the second round of the AHL playoffs:
GRIFFINS TO BATTLE MARLIES IN ROUND TWO
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – After defeating the sixth-seeded Houston Aeros three games to two in the Western Conference Quarterfinals – capped off by tonight’s 7-0 win in Game 5 at Van Andel Arena – the Midwest Division champion and third-seeded Grand Rapids Griffins will face the North Division champion and second-seeded Toronto Marlies in the best-of-seven conference semifinals.
Toronto, which authored a 3-0 sweep of Rochester in round one, will host Games 1 and 2 of the 2-3-2 format at Ricoh Coliseum on Friday, May 10 and Saturday, May 11, before the series switches to Van Andel Arena on Wed., May 15 for the first of as many as three straight Griffins home games. The complete schedule is as follows:
Updated w/ video post-game chatter from Kronwall, Zetterberg and Babcock after the game at 12 AM: The Detroit Red Wings reminded us all how incredibly "young" they are, literally and figuratively, and how much trouble they've had on special teams during the course of an absolutely embarrassing 4-0 loss to the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday night (with the, "How many games with Justin Abdelkader get for hitting Toni Lydman?" talk out-pacing, "How will the Wings readjust and rebound?" also: Hey, the Griffins won 7-0!).
This needs to be said right now: the Wings aren't out of it by any means down 2-1 to the Ducks, and you better believe that the team lost its nerve completely--giving up some silly, mite-hockey pedestrianly poor goals to the Ducks in the 3rd period--which can be corrected...
Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader was given a 5-minute major and ejected for this hit on Anaheim Ducks defenseman Toni Lydman, who left the game and will not return:
You will see what you will see, and the video will support your opinion. We are all subjective here, and in my opinion, it was a clean hit in intent that ended up very ugly--and was penalized properly.
Update: This is the only part of the exchange I don't like:
added 2:22pm, from Ansar Khan of Mlive,
“I have to play a simple game, that's priority No. 1,'' Samuelsson said. “Just skate hard and hit guys. That's where I'm going to start, and hopefully I'll get a feel for the puck. … I can play hard around the puck. It doesn't matter how much (time) you missed.''
Samuelsson will play on the fourth line with Cory Emmerton and Patrick Eaves and, with his right-handed shot, man the right point on the second power-play unit, alongside Jakub Kindl.
“Unfortunately, I got injured, but that's nothing I think about right now,'' Samuelsson said. “Like everybody else, I come in here really excited about tonight. Playoffs is awesome. That's what I live and die for. It's going to be fun.''
Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said he made the change because “I just watched the game (Thursday) and I thought Sammy could help us.''
from Lis Dillman of the LA Times,
Boudreau addressed several topics in a media session here after the team arrived in Detroit: the slow starts in each period by the Ducks in Game 2 and allowing three power-play goals in the 5-4 overtime defeat.
"The Wings are a good team," he said. "We're not playing the Florida Panthers here. They're going to make you make mistakes and that's gonna happen."
Said Ducks center Saku Koivu: "You play every second day and have a travel day, so there's not a lot of time to really think about why it happened or what happened. You have to move on.
"You can't get, after a big win, emotionally too high. And same thing with a tough loss last night, you can't dwell on it too long."
more on the Ducks including Hiller will start again...
from Chuck Pleiness of Red Wings Front,
Babcock said before the playoffs that signing DeKeyser was the reason the Wings reached the playoffs for a 22nd consecutive season.
“He’s a kid, don’t get me wrong, but he’s a good player, so that’s a big blow for our team,” Babcock said. “But there are other guys that have been working hard, Lash, Colaiacovo have been working like crazy, trying to get back in the lineup. One of them will be in.”
I reviewed last night's game and right before the Ducks 3rd goal DeKeyser was in the corner battling with Selanne and DeKeyser had his stick at a weird angle and then you see him twitch a bit, there was no slash involved.
Unfortunately, that is not part of the video below, but it does show him in some pain as he remained on the ice and you can see him grab for his right hand right after the goal.
from Craig Custance of ESPN (paid subscription),
On his second goal, he took a pass from Zetterberg behind Hiller and drove to the net untouched, stuffing it past the Ducks goalie. Franzen beat a stationary Winnik to the front of the net, proving how dangerous he can be in that spot if Ducks defenders don't put a body on him.
And that's the challenge moving forward for Anaheim. If it wants to slow down the Mule, he needs to fear more than pucks flying for his midsection or a quick shove after he scores a goal.
He's a big, powerful force, and he will continue to dominate down low if the Ducks don't raise their physical game to match it. Because there's no doubt Franzen has raised his already.
"When he gets his mean streak going, that's when he plays his best hockey. He can be a force out there when he's using his body," Howard said. "It's just the playoffs. He enjoys this time of year. He has a blast out there."
Per Fox Sports Detroit, Red Wings coach Mike Babcock told John Keating that Danny DeKeyser suffered a broken thumb in the 3rd period of Game 2 between the Wings and Ducks and is done for the year.
I'm just gonna get this out here and write a quick take in a minute: the Red Wings absolutely blew a 3-goal lead and played awful hockey during the latter half of the 3rd period in Anaheim, from Jimmy Howard on out, but the Wings got a decisive power play going into OT and scored their 3rd early period PPG, with Gustav Nyquist scoring the gamer in a 5-4 OT win.
Detroit goes back to the Motor City tied 1-1, and it may have been ugly, but playoff hockey is about winning.
Incredibly worrisomely...according to FSD's Ken Daniels and Mickey Redmond, Danny DeKeyser didn't play after the Ducks' 4-2 goal in the 3rd period. After the game, Wings coach Mike Babcock told FSD's John Keating that DeKeyser suffered a broken thumb (via Teemu Selanne?) and is out for the playoffs.
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.