The Malik Report
by George Malik on 03/16/14 at 10:02 PM ET
After the Wings found out that they couldn't nurse a 0-0 tie, after Niklas Kronwall chased Patrick Kane to the blueline and the kid line kind of collectively brain-farted and watched the Hawks score the 2-1 goal, after Hossa picked the low corner and made it 3-1, I got angry (and the game ended ingloriously thanks to a 4-1 shorthanded goal where Franzen got his pocket picked by Hossa and neither Kronwall nor Alfredsson were anywhere to be found).
As a Red Wings fan, as someone who desperately wants to believe that a team with ten players hurt--including Datsyuk and Zetterberg--can somehow make the playoffs, even when Kyle Quincey's tripping Brendan Smith and guys are getting hurt every game and the Wings' opponents are the ones getting healthier and stronger and keep on *#$%@& winning...
The Red Wings lost a 4-1 decision to a vastly deeper Chicago Blackhawks team, kicking off the first of 5 games played in 8 nights and 9 in 15--with two games against Toronto, two against Minnesota, one against Montreal, Pittsburgh, Columbus and Tampa looming...
And I understand that plugging away and plugging away, staying calm and just keeping at 'er is the Red Wings' way, but I sure as *#$%@& hope that someone comes out of this game angry enough to stand up.
To stand up and say something. Whether it's Kronwall, Ericsson, Alfredsson, Sheahan or frickin' Teemu "everything is nice" Pulkkinen saying not making the playoffs is, "Not very nice," it is OFFICIALLY time for the Red Wings' leadership to channel Steve Yzerman, circa being down 0-2 to Vancouver in 2002, and to try very hard to ignore that the Hulls, Robitailles and Larionovs have given way to Nyquists, Emmertons and DeKeysers.
This team has to find a reason, a rallying cry, a purpose, a point at which they choose to stab their spades into the ground and start digging themselves out of the hole they've skated themselves into, partially due to incredibly inconsistent play and partially due to a staggering amount of injuries intersecting with an in-transition team that has yet to address the absences of the net-front presence that is Tomas Holmstrom and the brain drain on defense thanks to the losses of Rafalski, Stuart and Lidstrom...
And yes, when you add it all up, the math is stacked against Detroit and stacked against Detroit severely.
But a team that kept the Hawks to within a goal for 46 minutes and a team that, despite goal #4, got a remarkable performance from its goaltender earlier on...
It can't give up, not now, not yet. This team has 15 games remaining, and while it's a half-Grand Rapids Griffins team that has to climb nearly vertically uphill...
They've got to try to find a way. And it's about time for a *#$%@& rallying cry that involves something bolder, angrier and ballsier than the Patented Kronwall Sad Face saying, "We weren't good enough."
Shots 30-20 Chicago overall. Detroit was out-shot 11-5 in the 1st period, 14-7 in the 2nd, and Detroit actually out-shot Chicago 8-5 in the 3rd period.
Special teams: Detroit went 1-for-4 in 7:47 of power play time; Chicago went 1-for-3 in 5:42.
Goaltending: Jimmy Howard stopped 26 of 30 shots for Detroit; Corey Crawford stopped 19 of 20 for Chicago.
The 3 stars were picked by NHL.com's Brian Hedger, and he picked Duncan Keith, Ben Smith and Marian Hossa.
The Red Wings' goal: Nyquist (17) from Alfredsson (24) and Kronwall (34), PPG.
Faceoffs 30-21 Chicago (Detroit won 41%);
Blocked shots 18-11 Detroit;
Missed shots 16-5 Detroit (attempts 53-47 Chicago, with Detroit firing 20 shots ON Crawford and 27 wide/blocked);
Hits 33-20 Detroit;
Giveaways 12-7 Chicago;
Takeaways 4-3 Detroit.
Faceoffs: Legwand went 6-and-12 (33%); Sheahan went 3-and-9 (25%); Glendening went 6-and-4 (60%); Emmerton went 5-and-3 (63%); Franzen went 1-and-1 (50%); Abdelkader went 0-and-1.
Shots: Franzen led the Wings with 4 shots; Alfredsson Nyquist, Glendening, Kronwall and DeKeyser had 2; Smith, Legwand, Miller, Tootoo, Quincey and Ericsson had 1 shot.
Blocked attempts: Legwand hit Hawks players 3 times; Kronwall hit Hawks players 2 times; Alfredsson, Nyquist, Miller, Lashoff, Pulkkinen and Franzen had 1 attempt blocked.
Missed shots: Nyquist missed the net 5 times; Smith missed the net 3 times; Tatar, Kronwall and DeKeyser missed the net 2 times; Emmerton and Franzen missed the net 1 time.
Hits: Franzen led the Wings with 6 hits; Abdelkader had 5; Alfredsson had 3; Sheahan, Legwand, Tootoo and Ericsson had 2; Smith, Nyquist, Lashoff, Emmerton, Quincey, Glendening, Pulkkinen and DeKeyser had 1.
Giveaways: Quincey and Ericsson had 2 giveaways; Tatar, DeKeyser and Howard had 1.
Takeaways: Tatar had 2 takeaways; Miller and Kronwall had 1 takeaway.
Blocked opponent shots: Alfredsson and Quincey blocked 3 shots; Smith, Glendening and DeKeyser blocked 2 shots; Nyquist, Sheahan, Lashoff, Emmerton, Ericsson and Kronwall blocked 1 shot.
Penalties taken: Sheahan, Tatar, Glendening and Pulkkinen took minor penalties.
Plus-minus: The Wings finished at -14. Sheahan, Tatar and Kronwall finished at -2; Smith, Abdelkader, Alfredsson, Nyquist, Legwand, Quincey, Ericsson and Franzen finished at -1.
Points: Nyquist had a goal; Kronwall and Alfredsson had assists.
Ice time: Kronwall played 24:06; DeKeyser played 21:43; Ericsson played 20:59;
Franzen played 20:16; Sheahan played 18:25; Legwand played 18:12;
Tatar played 17:49; Nyquist played 17:48; Quincey played 17:19;
Alfredsson played 16:55; Glendening played 15:48; Miller played 15:06;
Abdelkader played 14:33; Smith played 14:28; Lashoff played 13:19;
Emmerton played 9:55; Pulkkinen played 8:17; Tootoo played 7:20.
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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.