The Malik Report
by George Malik on 05/24/13 at 05:17 PM ET
The Vancouver Sun's Cam Cole took note of the attention Jonathan Toews' shenanigans receieved from the Detroit press during and after the Red Wings' 2-0 win over Chicago on Thursday, as well as the after-the-fact comments about Toews losing his temper on Friday. So Cole attended the Blackhawks' Friday practice, and after asking Brent Seabrook whether he calmed Toews down when Toews was busting nuts regarding the third penalty he took (Seabrook did), Cole cast a sympathetic ear toward Toews:
Toews, to his credit, never ducks the spotlight, even when it’s unkind. He didn’t deserve the penalty that cost the Blackhawks the decisive goal, by Jakub Kindl. He was nabbed for high sticking, but in fact all he did was lift the stick of Justin Abdelkader, who lost the handle on his own twig and had the butt end of it hit him in the face. But he wasn’t complaining about it Friday.
“I mean, I understand that what happened in the second period wasn’t a good thing,” Toews said. “I don’t attribute it to me losing my temper. Obviously, I was a little bit careless with my stick and it ended up costing me, and costing my team. But when things go well for our team, sometimes maybe I get more credit than I deserve, and I think same goes the other way. And I understand that’s part of it. Our best players need to be our best players. We need to lead, we need to grab the rope and start pulling for the rest of the guys, and it starts with myself.”
But Toews, who insisted to the Hawks' press that his team should feel confident about themselves and upbeat going into what he and his teammates inisst will be the first of three straight wins starting on Saturday night, want to set the record, uh...Straight...That he's a great player, even when he's not registering points...
“Well, one of the things that I like about my game is that if they’re not going in for me, I can do a lot of other things,” said Canada’s best player on the 2010 gold-medal winning Olympic team. "But I think in this given circumstance, (like) every guy in the locker room, if they think they’re the ones who can help us break through as a team ... I put some pressure on myself to be that guy and to score a big goal, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.”
And Toews insisted that Henrik Zetterberg hasn't cracked his poise or resolve:
“I’m not as worried about him as maybe you guys think I should be,” Toews said. “He’s a good player, he’s doing a good job of playing smart defensive hockey, but you know, it doesn’t mean I’m not getting chances and not getting to the net. Those chances are coming and at some point they have to go in.”
That’s what he’s telling himself, anyway. In the meantime, the Hawks are trying to invoke the ghosts of comebacks past, notably the 2011 series against the Vancouver Canucks, when they were down 3-0 and rebounded to force Game 7 and only lost on Alex Burrows’s overtime goal.
“It just goes to show that things like that are possible, that we were very, very close to winning that series,” Toews said, “and I’m sure Detroit knows and we know that this series is a long way from being over.”
Toews' coach agreed with his captain:
"They’ve obviously got the momentum right now,” [Hawks coach Joel] Quenneville said. “The big picture looks bleak, but one game can turn everything around. And that’s what we’re looking for.”
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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.