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Red Wings-Hawks quick take: 3 is their magic number (and they can’t score 3)

The Detroit Red Wings cannot score three goals, and they are dooming their own playoff chances because of it, having dropped 3 of 3 against the Chicago Blackhawks and following up last night's 3-2 shootout loss to San Jose with a 3-2 shootout loss to Chicago.

For the second night in a row, the Red Wings gave up the first goal, a bizarre back-door-tap-in by Viktor Stalberg.

For the second night in a row, the Wings tied things up, getting a power play tip-in by Johan Franzen off a Carlo Colaiacovo shot, and for the second night in a row, the Wings took a 2-1 lead quickly, with Cory Emmerton banging home a rebound for a top-shelf goal. But the Wings seemed to trip over themselves when the Hawks were given a too-many men penalty with 1:31 left in the 2nd. They stopped moving forward. They seemed content to guard a 2-goal lead.

And the Wings sagged during and after Jakub Kindl took a hooking penalty, and yet again, the goalie who kept the Wings in it was burned because his defense was caught swimming. Johnny Oduya flickered a pass through falling-down players and off Kyle Quincey right to Jonathan Toews, who tied things up with 1:57 in the 3rd.

Both teams played for a shootout, regrettably, with the Wings only getting 1 shot in overtime and all the effort and progress the Wings made in terms of pushing the puck FORWARD, skating FORWARD, shooting the puck ON the net and then RETRIEVING any rebounds to SUSTAIN puck possession hockey...

And Howard was schooled while the Wings' shooters were just as slowly and painfully over-cutesy in the shootout as they were in regulation.

That is my biggest problem--the players. The coaching staff has swapped lines and defensive pairs on the fly repeatedly over the past few games, they've accentuated the positive, they've tried to get the maximum amount of effort from their charges, and we're at a point where even Pavel Datsyuk is throwing blind passes to no one in the slot, where Henrik Zetterberg's automatically skating the puck BEHIND the net with one hand on his stick, where Gustav Nyquist is spinning and twisting himself into the boards instead of toward the net.

The Wings' best players aren't getting the job done, from Datsyuk to Zetterberg to Brunner to Kronwall to Kindl to Howard, frankly, at least not in the shootout for the Wings' goalie, and now the team has 7 games left--starting with Sunday's tilt in Nashville--and has 44 points, needing 9 to control their destiny.

That's a hard number to achieve, and the Wings...Are slowly turning into Beavis, chittering and jittering, saying, "WE'RE NEVER GONNA SCORE!" and then proving it.

At this point, the coaches can only make moves on defense. They can't swap out forwards as only 12 are healthy and there are no recalls for anything save emergencies. There is nothing that the GM can do. It's on the players to decide their fates, and the players have not delivered.

It's on them now, and it's going to be on the players for the next seven games.

If the horses can't deliver, in the end, coaches and general managers do not score goals or stop pucks. And there are some incredibly well-paid and incredibly talented players on the Wings who are not playing up to their potential, including the three men wearing letters on their jerseys and the goaltender who has to be better in the shootout--and EVERYONE in between.

The responsibility for this entire season falls upon the players who HAVE played for the Wings, not the players who you or I wish COULD have come here or we think SHOULD have come here. And the Wings are holding on by a thread.

Statistics:

Shots
29-28 Detroit overall. The Wings were out-shot 11-10 in the 1st, out-shot Chicago 10-7 in the 2nd, were out-shot 10-8 in the 3rd and out-shot Chicago 1-0 in OT.

The Wings went 1-for-5 in 8:08 of PP time; the Hawks went 0-for-3 in 4:29.

Jimmy Howard stopped 26 of 28 shots; Corey Crawford stopped 27 of 29.

The 3 stars were picked by the "Chicago Media," and they picked Viktor Stalberg, Jimmy Howard and Jonathan Toews.

Faceoffs 37-22 Chicago (Detroit only won 37%);

Blocked shots 17-13 Chicago;

Missed shots 12-9 Detroit (total attempts 58-50 Detroit, with Detroit firing 29 on net and 29 wide or into Hawks players);

Hits 31-29 Detroit;

Giveaways 11-4 Chicago;

Takeaways 13-10 Chicago.

Individual stats, TMR style:

Faceoffs: Datsyuk went 11-and-11 (50%); Filppula went 7-and-13 (35%); both Emmerton and Zetterberg went 1-and-4 (20%); Andersson went 2-and-5 (29%).

Shots: Zetterberg and Franzen co-led the team with 6 shots apiece; Cleary had 3; Kindl, Emmerton, Filppula, Ericsson and DeKeyser had 2; Abdelkader, Nyquist and Brunner had 1.

Blocked attempts: Franzen fired 4 shots into Blackhawks players; Kindl, Abdelkader and Ericsson had 2 attempts blocked; Datsyuk, Nyquist, Brunner, Emmerton, Quincey, Colaiacovo and Zetterberg had single attempts blocked.

Missed shots: Datsyuk, Colaiacovo and Zetterberg missed the net 2 times; Nyquist, Brunner, Filppula, Ericsson and DeKeyser missed the net 1 time.

Hits: Ericsson led the team with 6 hits; Colaiacovo had 5; Miller had 4; Abdelkader and Filppula had 3; Franzen had 2; Kindl, Cleary, Datsyuk, Nyquist, Tootoo, Zetterberg, Kronwall and DeKeyser had 1.

Giveaways: Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Brunner and DeKeyser had giveaways;

Takeaways: Kronwall had 2 takeaways; Datsyuk, Nyquist, Miller, Tootoo, Brunner, Emmerton, Zetterberg and Andersson had 1.

Blocked opponent shots: Emmerton, Colaiacovo, Filppula and Kronwall blocked 2 shots; Kindl, Quincey, Zetterberg, Ericsson and DeKeyser blocked 1.

Penalties taken: Kindl, Cleary and Quincey took minor penalties.

Plus-minus: The Wings finished at a collective -5. Kindl, Cleary, Tootoo, Quincey, Filppula and Franzen finished at -1; Brunner finished at +1.

Points: Emmerton and Franzen scored goals; Miller, Tootoo and Colaiacovo had assists.

Ice time: Kronwall led the team with 27:57 played; Ericsson played 24:33; Zetterberg played 22:54;

Datsyuk played 22:22; Colaiacovo played 21:41; Filppula played 20:57;

Franzen played 20:11; DeKeyser played 19:49; Kindl played 19:23;

Cleary played 18:22; Abdelkader played 16:13; Quincey played 14:14;

Miller played 13:22; Brunner played 11:46; Nyquist played 11:42;

Andersson played 10:47; Emmerton played 9:26; Tootoo played 8:33.

Update: The NHL Network posted the shootout via the Hawks announcers:

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Comments

Figaro's avatar

I’ve pretty much lost confidence in Fil.  Nothing good happens when he’s on the ice.  Tonight, he went offsides on a 2-on-1 and it was his line on the ice, chasing and chasing and eventually running into each other and flailing on the ice in front of the net as Toews scored the late goal. 35% on faceoffs.  He’s definitely worth $5mil a season…

Hey, at least we got one point.  Points are points.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/12/13 at 11:38 PM ET

gowings's avatar

George….I agree 100%

“Hey, at least we got one point.  Points are points.”

Wish I could see that way…..Murphy’s law….all the teams we wanted to loooose tonight obviously win…...maudit…..

Posted by gowings from MTL on 04/12/13 at 11:43 PM ET

RWBill's avatar

For the first time in several weeks Detro-yet is not the team that controls its own destiny.  It is Dallas.

Dallas can tie Detroit tomorrow ( Home v SJS) and hold the tie breaker with more Regulation/Overtime Wins.

Posted by RWBill from the open bar on The Hasek. on 04/12/13 at 11:59 PM ET

gt500x's avatar

At this point, the coaches can only make moves on defense. They can’t swap out forwards as only 12 are healthy and there are no recalls for anything save emergencies. There is nothing that the GM can do. It’s on the players to decide their fates, and the players have not delivered.

I like our team.

Posted by gt500x on 04/13/13 at 12:00 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

  At this point, the coaches can only make moves on defense. They can’t swap out forwards as only 12 are healthy and there are no recalls for anything save emergencies. There is nothing that the GM can do. It’s on the players to decide their fates, and the players have not delivered.

I like our team.

All our injured guys, like Helmers, are just like Deadline Deals!

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/13/13 at 12:05 AM ET

Avatar

There is nothing that the GM can do.  It’s on the players to decide their fates, and the players have not delivered.

Well, maybe the players have decided to be inspired by the GM who didn’t deliver when he could havedone something to make them better…

Posted by Garth on 04/13/13 at 12:05 AM ET

gowings's avatar

“Dallas can tie Detroit tomorrow ( Home v SJS) and hold the tie breaker with more Regulation/Overtime Wins.”

With Columbus not too far behind…and oh look…is that a coyote I hear…?

Posted by gowings from MTL on 04/13/13 at 12:05 AM ET

Avatar

What bothers me most is that we just played 3 superior teams (Blues, Sharks, Hawks), and pretty much saw no strong effort from all 3. They let us break on them, and then just went back the other way and managed to find a way to pull off a win, even if the last two weren’t real wins.

So much of the way the Wings play is inefficient or just dumb. They need to make serious changes, but I don’t know what they can adjust with so little time left and such a fractured roster.

Posted by CrimsonPhoenix on 04/13/13 at 12:36 AM ET

Tony Perkis's avatar

I was just happy they didn’t lose 7-1.

Posted by Tony Perkis from Drinking at Robert's Lounge with Billy Batts on 04/13/13 at 01:15 AM ET

Avatar

On the bright side of they do make it into the playoffs they won’t be able to lose in a shootout.

Posted by loojay on 04/13/13 at 01:20 AM ET

w2j2's avatar

Zetterberg played 22:54; Datsyuk played 22:22; Filppula played 20:57; Franzen played 20:11.

Aren’t those crazy minutes for forwards?

How can any player hold up and play at his best when he is exhausted?

cool mad

Posted by w2j2 on 04/13/13 at 01:28 AM ET

perfection's avatar

George, you blame it on not scoring three… well how about not being able to hold one goal leads in the third? how about not being able to win a friggin shootout for the life of us when it matters most? yeah, it’s a skills competition but we should have at least won one of these two shootouts all things being equal. we are definitely leaving valuable points out there.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 04/13/13 at 01:31 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

Yes. Second game in which the Wings gave up a 2-1 lead. Unacceptable. Second straight shootout loss. Unacceptable.

And every time I hear people complaining about Kronwall, I look at that 24-to-28-minutes-played stat and think, “You’d be making mistakes and might be on for a goal against if you were playing half the damn game, too.”

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 04/13/13 at 02:06 AM ET

Hockeytown Wax's avatar

whats this on the red wings web site ??  playoff tickets are on sale ??  who in gawds name is stupid enough to buy those ??

... and who was standing right in front of the net when Chicago scored the tying goal ??  Queazy was !!!  Broken face or not, he suxxx and should have been scratched again ... no reason to sit Smith.

Between the line combos Babs is coming up with and playing musical defencemen, its getting pretty obvious that he’s just balancing out game time as best he can and if by some miracle they do play themselves into a playoff birth then they’ll know exactly who to play and who to sit.

Its player evaluation time in preparation for next season.

EnJoY !!!

Posted by Hockeytown Wax from West Bloomfield, Mi. on 04/13/13 at 04:11 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 04/13/13 at 02:06 AM ET

1) different for forwards

2) he’s the number 1 D man, we’ve had 3 years to know he’s going to be our number 1.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 04/13/13 at 10:03 AM ET

SandysWingingit's avatar

3 goals is a lot to ask when your team is not playing with the requisite number of legit top-6 goal scoring forwards….just sayin’. Some games, this team was lucky to score one. Not saying they didn’t have a couple scor-a-palooza’s (Vancouver, Ducks). But those were the exception this season.

And yes, the defense has it’s weak moments. Howie, too.

But when I think of all the games the Wings lost by one goal (I counted 13 including the 7 OTL), I couldn’t help but wonder if just one trade deadline or offseason move for that top-6 forward Babcock has been asking for forever could have made the difference. Tough to find? Too costly? More like, too late! And it is, indeed, out of everyone’s hands now and squarely on the backs of this (“I’m okay with our”) team to try to keep the playoff streak going.

Sorry to say, I’m not real optimistic about their chances…

Posted by SandysWingingit on 04/13/13 at 10:04 AM ET

Figaro's avatar

And when we get to the Play-offs (I’m also a Cubs & Lions fan, so I’m always optimistic) this Musical Defensemen game Babs is playing is doing nothing for the on-ice chemistry that you have to have in May & June.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 04/13/13 at 10:08 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.