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The Malik Report

Red Wings-Blackhawks Game 6 quick take: self-inflicted wounds

Updated 4x at 11:44 PM, with highlights and stats, and, put bluntly? Depth wins you playoff games and loses you playoff games. And the Wings' depth players are, by and large, young and/or inexperienced. There's a reason that the Wings kept the Drapers and Maltbys around for so long, at the expense of some serviceable players. Because, come playoff time, experience is invaluable and veteran savvy means fewer mistakes. This has been a team whose playoff run has been marred by mistakes because it has so little experience and because its veterans are overcompensating for the lack thereof.

The Detroit Red Wings 4-3 decision to the Chicago Blackhawks yields a Game 7 on Wednesday in Chicago, it yields the Red Wings having given control of this series back to the Blackhawks thanks to three successively poorly-played games, and it makes me wonder whether the hockey gods want the Wings or the Hawks to win this one.

Depending on your point of view, Johan Franzen either did or did not have control of the puck on the 2-2 goal. Depending on your point of view, the penalty shot that decided this game was either awarded because Carlo Colaiacovo slashed Michal Frolik on the hands/stick, or because one of many, many chintzy calls this game was marred by because the referee saw what he wanted to saw.

There is no doubt that the Detroit Red Wings were out-played and mostly predated upon by a team that saw Brendan Smith and the Wings' defensemen play lazy hockey along their goal line and down low, and there is no doubt that the Wings gave this one away. But some breaks are deserved...And some are cheap shots.

But you don't get into a gunfight with a deeper Hawks team, and for far too much of tonight's game, the Wings stood and watched while the Hawks possessed the puck, and, eventually, they stood and watched the Hawks score goals on a goaltender who is still owed for Game 5 and is now seriously owed a remarkable Game 7 performance from teammates who let him down, despite Howard's poor penalty shot performance.


Shots 38-28 Detroit overall. The teams were tied in shots in the 1st, 10-10, Detroit out-shot Chicago 18-10 in the 2nd and out-shot Chicago 10-8 in the 3rd.

Chicago went 1-for-5 in 5:18 of PP time; Detroit went 0-for-3 in 4:47.

Howard stopped 24 of 28; Crawford stopped 35 of 38.

The 3 stars were picked by Nicholas J. Cotsonika, and he picked Andersson, Hossa and Bickell.

The Wings' goals: Eaves (1) from Miller (1) and Smith (3);

Andersson (1) from Kindl (4);

Brunner (5) from Datsyuk (6) and Cleary (5).

Faceoffs 36-23 Detroit (Detroit won 61%);

Blocked shots 11-10 Chicago;

Missed shots 11-11 (Detroit had 38 shots ON Crawford and 22 wide/blocked, or a total of 70 attempts);

Hits 29-16 Detroit;

Giveaways 12-3 Detroit;

Takeaways 5-4 Chicago.

Individual stats:

Faceoffs: Datsyuk went 14-and-10 (58%); Zetterberg went 8-and-6 (57%); Emmerton went 6-and-5 (55%); Andersson went 8-and-1 (89%); Filppula lost his only faceoff.

Shots: Franzen and Datsyuk co-led the team with 6 shots; Zetterberg and Filppula had 4; Quincey had 3; Kindl, Cleary, Eaves, Brunner and Ericsson had 2; Smith, Abdelkader, Cleary, Nyquist, Miller and Andersson had 1.

Blocked attempts: Datsyuk, Ericsson and Franzen fired 2 pucks into Hawks players; Kindl, Cleary, Quincey, Colaiacovo and Kronwall had 1 attempt blocked.

Missed shots: Zetterberg missed the net 3 times; Franzen and Abdelkader missed the net 2 times; Smith, Filppula, Kronwall and Andersson missed the net 1 time.

Hits: Adelkader had 5 hits; Cleary and Emmerton had 3; Nyquist, Eaves, Miller, Filppula, Ericsson and Franzen had 2; Smith, Kindl, Datsyuk, Brunner, Colaiacovo and Zetterberg had 1.

Giveaways: Kindl had 4 giveaways; Franzen had 2; Cleary, Datsyuk, Nyquist, Zetterberg, Kronwall and Andersson had 1.

Takeaways: Brunner, Emmerton, Quincey and Zetterberg had 1 takeaway.

Blocked opponent shots: Kronwall blocked 3 Blackhawks shots; Miller and Colaiacovo blocked 2; Kindl, Datsyuk and Emmerton blocked 1.

Penalties taken: Kindl, Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Franzen took minor penalties.

Plus-minus: The Wings finished at +5 collectively. Smith, Abdelkader, Quincey, Zetterberg and Filppula were -1; Kindl, Nyquist, Eaves, Miller, Emmerton, Colaiacovo, Kronwall and Andersson were +1; Brunner was +2.

Points: Eaves, Brunner and Andersson scored goals; Smith, Kindl, Cleary, Datsyuk and Miller had assists.

Ice time: Kronwall led the team with 26:14 played; Ericsson played 23:25; Datsyuk played 20:26;

Franzen played 20:26; Zetterberg played 20:01; Cleary played 18:16;

Kindl played 18:15; Quincey played 17:19; Abdelkader played 16:44;

Smith played 16:29; Filppula played 16:26; Colaiacovo played 15:00;

Miller played 12:36; Brunner played 11:53; Emmerton played 10:55;

Eaves played 9:57; Andersson played 9:43; Nyquist played 7:48.

Update: The NHL Tonight's posted kind-of-sort-of highlights...

Michael Frolik spoke to the NHL Network after the game...

Here's Hawks coach Joel Quenneville's post-game presser...

And here's Wings coach Mike Babcock's post-game presser:

Update #2.5: Oh boy, Toews post-game:

Update #3: The Windsor Star's Bob Duff posted cell phone videos of Henrik Zetterberg...

And Niklas Kronwall speaking with the media:

Update #4: Here's a slate of highlights narrated by the CBC:

Update #4: Oh boy. NHL.com posted post-game clips of Michael Frolik...

And Bryan Bickell...

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People can harp on Brendan Smith all they want I guess but this team is not tied up at 3 games a piece because of “inexperience” guys like Nyquist and Andersson are playing their asses off.  This team is now tied because their star players are no longer turning it up.  They’re getting shut down by the Hawks top lines and on the receiving end of what they were giving Toews and Kane.  Don’t get me started on Filpula either, he has been a non factor this whole playoff and continues to show why he can’t be relied upon as a 2nd line center.

Posted by bababooey on 05/28/13 at 11:38 AM ET

shanetx's avatar

Agreed.  I have a really hard time pinning this one on Smith.  Enough goals were scored to cover for his mistakes but for some aforementioned factors….

Thanks for that.  I agree wholeheartedly with you.

Smith isn’t entirely the problem.  Smith being slotted too high is the problem.  We’ve all seen it before but somehow don’t learn.  Last year the Wings had the highest scoring 3rd and 4th line in the league… until Helm gets hurt.  Helm gets hurt, the lines get rejiggled, guys are playing a spot ahead of where they should be and not only does the third line suck, the forth line started to, too.  Babcock preaches slotting, as in Helm’s the guy that slots everyone else right and all of a sudden things click.  He said it in 10, too, when Datsyuk was hurt.  Something to the effect of Helm’s a dynamic game-changing forward at 3rd line center but just an adequate second line center.

Smith is the same way.  He’d be a revelation if he was playing with Kronwall or Ericsson or Stuart or anyone else who was sound defensively on a consistant basis-  and that’s a key. Quincey can make one jaw dropping “Was that really Kyle Quincey?” play every two games but he does it so infrequently that Smith, and the rest of the team, don’t know what he’s going to do.  Smith can’t learn and develop playing with a guy like that.  (You can flip the names, Smith and Quincey, change “learn and develop” to read “regain consistency and hope to salvage his career” and this entire paragraph probably reads about about as true).  The Wings don’t have all of the pieces; that’s what makes this team so damn fun to root for and to support the coach of.  He’s made a lot of wins out of a pretty hodgepodge group (plus Howard).  I think they’ve got one more in them this series- we haven’t really heard from Datsyuk, Franzen or Z in a few games, after all.  They aren’t going down quietly.  I, for one, can’t wait till game 7 (but ask me again in 2 hours and I’ll just curse at you and tell you to go the *#$%@& away).

Posted by shanetx from Floydada, Texas on 05/28/13 at 09:14 PM ET

jsquigg's avatar

he had a clear breakaway and the slash took away his shot a penalty shot everytime sorry wings fans it sucks i would be pissed too but rules are rules and your teams subtle interference that you’ve been getting away with winner take all 7th game bring it on

Go fuch yourself, troll.

Posted by jsquigg on 05/28/13 at 11:53 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

My response would be a little different: Eddie Olczyk, is that you?

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 05/29/13 at 12:27 AM ET

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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.