The Malik Report
The Red Wings' 5-4 OT win over the Buffalo Sabres didn't come easily and it didn't come prettily, but even after blowing yet another third period lead--and this time surrendering a go-ahead goal to Buffalo--the Red Wings managed to eke first one point and then two out of a game that really should have been theirs all along.
To quote my aunt, "Should'ves and could'ves are words we don't use, they only depress us and give us the blues," and gathering from the mood of the fan base lately, there's been a whole lot of should've/could've usage recently.
The bottom line here is that the Wings got two points in what was most assuredly a "learning experience" game, and perhaps more importantly, the Wings at least verbalized having learned from their mistakes in their post-game remarks.
For the Sabres, Rasmus Ristolainen's 3 (changed post-game from 4) assists served as a bright spot, as the Buffalo News's John Vogl noted:
Prospect news: Ties in the Champions’ League; Hicketts, Turgeon assist; Griffins file weekly release
Of prospect-related note:
In the Champions Hockey League, Julius Vahatalo had 4 shots in TPS Turku's 3-3 tie with Lukko;
Axel Holmstrom had 3 shots and finished at -1 in Skelleftea AIK's 1-1 tie with Davos;
In the WHL, Joe Hicketts had an assist in the Victoria Royals' 3-1 win over Medicine Hat;
Dominic Turgeon registered an assist in the Portland Winterhawks' 3-2 loss to Prince George;
And in the AHL, the Grand Rapids Griffins filed their weekly release:
Despite coming into tonight's game having lost 2 of their past 3 in overtime, the Red Wings entered their match-up with the Buffalo Sabres on a seven-game "unbeaten" streak, hoping to hold a lead for the first time in four games as the Wings battled Jack Eichel's prospect-packed Sabres team.
In theory, Tuesday's game should have meant a relatively easy path to two points. In practice, the Red Wings gave up another third-period lead in devastating fashion, surrendering a 3-1 lead to trail 4-3 for ten very long minutes in the 3rd period, but the Wings salvaged a point with Justin Abdelkader's second goal of the game (and Gordie Howe Hat Trick +1) and nursed the game to a shootout, where Detroit prevailed 5-4 thanks to Brad Richards' marker.
It wasn't a pretty game by any stretch of the imagination, offensive forays included, and from a Wings fan's perspective, it was downright ugly to watch the Wings blow another 2-goal lead, but it certainly wasn't worth the boo birds trying to stifle, "Let's go Red Wings" chants when the team was down for 10:09 of elapsed time.
In the end, the Wings got the 2 points, and they got 2 ugly ones at that, but if this is a learning curve game, by the amount and mangitude of mistakes made, the Wings must have done a tremendous amount of learning in this one.
Ken Holland spoke to The Fan 590/Sportsnet's Prime Time Sports this evening, addressing the Red Wings' attempts to round into form just past the quarter pole of the 2015-16 season:
The Red Wings posted a game-day preview video, teeing up tonight's game against the Buffalo Sabres (7:30 PM EST on FSD/MSG B/97.1 FM):
The mom's out of the hospital and doing OK, and the aunt and I are recovering from a very different kind of "eventful Thanksgiving weekend." While I was out, in the prospect department:
In World Junior Championship news, Joe Hicketts was officially named to Team Canada's World Junior selection camp;
The Red Wings often make their biggest and most meaningful impacts off the ice, and yesterday, the team visited Chlidren's Hospital in Detroit. WDIV was there:
Update: WXYZ posted a video of the visit as well:
from Gregg Krupa of the Detroit News,
So, the fact Dylan Larkin (10 goals, eight assists, plus-14) and Jack Eichel (eight goals, four assists, minus-6) are buddies, beginning even in days before they spent a lot of time together through a few years in Ann Arbor at the National Team Development Program of USA Hockey, is more for the fans and the media, perhaps.
“The first thing that I think, though, when I hear that is: We’ve got a big game against Buffalo,” Blashill said.
A team must play. A coach must coach.
“Lots of people want this to be Eichel versus Larkin, but it’s not,” he said. “It’s the Detroit Red Wings versus the Buffalo Sabres and, to me, that’s what’s the most important thing.”...
“We think we’ve got lots of other really good players in the room that are going to have to be great tonight, and I’m sure they do as well,” Blashill said, emphasizing the importance of the game over the presence of two up-and-coming stars.
NEW YORK (Dec. 1, 2015) – Detroit Red Wings center Dylan Larkin, who led all rookies with seven goals in 13 games (7-3—10), has been named the NHL’s Rookie of the Month for November.
Larkin edged Chicago Blackhawks left wing Artemi Panarin (5-8—13 in 13 GP), New York Rangers center Oscar Lindberg (4-5—9 in 14 GP), Arizona Coyotes left wingMax Domi (3-6—9 in 12 GP), Calgary Flames center Sam Bennett (4-4—8 in 12 GP) and Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel (4-4—8 in 13 GP) for the honor.
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.