Kukla's Korner

The Malik Report

The overnight report: ‘Lake takes’ on the Red Wings’ loss to Buffalo and quotes of note

Paul already posted a "quick take" that focused on the Red Wings' 3-2 shootout loss to Buffalo and the no-goal call against Johan Franzen that may or may not have been a reputation call--or, as Michal Neuvirth suggested to the Associated Press, a promise kept:

The Red Wings appeared to net the winning goal at 2:28 of overtime on Zetterberg's slap shot but the goal was disallowed when officials ruled Johan Franzen had established position in the crease.

"I was talking to the ref a couple times during the game," Neuvirth said. "He told me, 'I know he's standing in the crease, so whenever they're going to score a goal, I'm going to disallow it.' I was glad he actually did it."

Babcock didn't dispute the call.

"We were in the crease," he said.

I had a massive anxiety attack on Sunday, but I watched the game overnight, and I'd like to weigh in if I may:

Was Franzen inhibiting Neuvirth from taking "his ice" in the crease? His heels and body were in there, but I don't think that any of that mattered to Graham Skilliter: as soon as Neuvirth pushed Franzen with his blocker to move him out of a deeper in-crease position, and then the goalie makes sure to look directly at the ref with some, "What was that?" body language after the fact, the ref is going to make the (non-reviewable) call:

Franzen was in the crease, and they're calling these penalties this year, as Ken Daniels and Chris Osgood pointed out, but Jimmy Howard will tell you that he's faced the same kind of player-visits-crease calls where goals have counted dozens of times.

As this call is non-reviewable by the "war room" because GM's and Board of Governors think that reviewing every instance when a goal goes into the net will "slow down the game too much," you have to assume that we're going to be talking about another half-dozen of these calls before the season is out. These are the Red Wings, and as you and I both know, the refs and NHL don't have to say that the team has a reputation, but it has a reputation.

Credit Neuvirth for playing it up.

In the interim, Franzen needs to get his ass out of the crease. He can't do anything about Carey Price-style goalies humping his leg, but he's smart enough and talented enough to look down and make sure his skates aren't anywhere deeper than the top of the red, just as Tomas Holmstrom used to do.

Here are some other game observations after the fact:

As I watched this game, I see the Wings doing a lot of fly-bys at both nets, not covering the Sabres when they get chances and not bearing down on their own chances in front of Neuvirth, who was very good, but saw the vast majority of the 38 shots he faced and didn't have bodies near him making it hard to pin down rebounds. The Wings weren't fantastic in terms of getting to those rebounds before the Sabres cleared them, either.

The first period was VERY meh, and Abdelkader's compensatory skate-back actually pushed Datsyuk out of position prior to Girgensons and Flynn taking advantage of Smith and especially Kindl, who stood and waived at the puck as Flynn put the 1-0 goal in.

I also see that Tyler Myers looks very big and very fast when he has the puck, but on the Tatar 1-1 goal and the shift that led up to it, as he chased Zetterberg around the ice and then passively waived at Tatar's shot, he looked like a big pylon out there--and he looked baffled on the Datsyuk goal, too.

Myers isn't not a magic pill. He plays a lot, he's assertive and he's physical, but his size also yields a lumbering defenseman who doesn't skate like Zdeno Chara does. I watched him as closely as I could, and I sure wouldn't trade Anthony Mantha or Dylan Larkin for him. He may be a right-handed unicorn and all but he doesn't trail rainbows flowing out of his hockey pants when he skates.

Despite the fact that Tatar and Nyquist were good, and Nyquist seemed to spark Tatar, I thought Sheahan was poor. Sheahan's had a rough campaign thus far and has had particular difficulty in trying to win faceoffs.

I didn't expect Franzen to do much offensively, and he took until the third period to find his legs--and surprisingly enough, he does fit quite well with Helm. Jurco...May very well need a "conditioning stint" in Grand Rapids to find his hands.

I didn't understand the rationale between placing DeKeyser and Smith together and reuniting that classic pair of Jakub Kindl and Brian Lashoff, either, though the 3rd pair wasn't poor (Kindl was on for a Sabres goal and on for a Wings goal)

I mean, shit when you realize that Kyle Quincey is the magic mushroom that makes the Winged Wheel's Puck-Moving Machine work, you start wondering if you took ten extra Klonopin for your anxiety attack instead of one.

The Wings looked what they usually look when only the top line is dominant and the first defensive pair is the only one that's really good at moving the puck--thin, not only technically speaking but also in terms of confidence. Sometimes the Wings look like a team that you can't stop, and other nights, if you blow on 'em the paper tiger falls over.

Datsyuk's 2-1 goal was amazing, but we're kind of used to that by now. He blew through Myers and Gorges like they were invisible and Neuvirth was out of it as soon as the puck was on Datsyuk's stick, as Chris Osgood (I guess we're stuck with Ozzie for the road trip) suggested. This is what he does.

Along the "paper tiger" lines, you NEVER want to see a team that's climbed from a 1-0 deficit to take a 2-1 lead blow a point in the 3rd period. You also don't want to blow a lead when you're keeping a team off the shot clock for ten minutes.

The Wings needed to put the pedal to the metal, not let the snake up off the mat, and while the Wings kept pushing to a tolerable level, they desperately needed a go-ahead goal, and instead, their lack of finish against a mostly un-screened Neuvirth--who faced SEVENTEEN third period shots to Howard's 8...

Yielded a dumb play where Smith's pass to DeKeyser got picked off, the Sabres took advantage of a second Smith turnover, Andersson made a third turnover and AGAIN, a puck bounced off Howard's pads (Jimmy, you lost 20 pounds and are using lighter gear, but CLOSE THOSE HOLES) and off Smith--who was IN THE CREASE, inhibiting his own goalie's ability to get out and get that right post covered--and it yielded one point instead of two.

I mean, this shit is inexcusable, with six-and-change left in the 3rd, you don't make three turnovers and back your own goalie in:

Getting one point out of games where you don't have killer instinct and two brain farts yield goals against is a good thing, don't get me wrong.

But the Wings fell flatter than pop that's been left out for too long--save Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Kronwall and Ericsson--after the Sabres tied things up.

The Wings had their chances, as they out-shot Buffalo 4-0 including a power play, but the call against them and a little lack of killer instinct bit 'em in the asses (and it's not like the dry scrape helped the shitty ice in Buffalo. Man, it was BAAAAAADDD).

I guess it's the usual story for the Wings: either the depth scoring shows up and the Wings win or Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Kronwall and Ericsson do the heavy lifting (Franzen was big and mean too, good for him to get back into his early-season form after all of two periods of play) and the team rolls the dice in terms of whether "the kids" do doofy things that yield goals against and the calls go against the Wings (deserved or undeserved).

Also: The Sabres are a different team with Ristolainen on the blueline, a much better one. Don't tell them that.

The Senators haven't won in three games and the Rangers will host the Blues tonight (I believe Dan Boyle's still out with a broken hand) before watching Detroit and Ottawa battle on Tuesday, the Wings will need to earn points in every road game to keep things up before wrapping up their 7-games-in-12-nights stint with home games against the Devils on Friday and the Lightning on Sunday.

As for the shootout, you know why the Wings are 0-and-2. Howard isn't very good, especially on the stick side.

Datsyuk made his typical move and hit blocker, Howard stopped Moulson but gave up his traditional back-in-too-much-and-give-up-the-stick-side goal to Ennis, Nyquist tied it with a deke-and-dangle and Howard didn't have much of a chance on the Girgensons goal, mostly because he turned his blocker over (a la Osgood), and Zetterberg's slap shot fake meant he ended up skating right in to Neuvirth.

The Wings flew to Ottawa after the game, so we may have to deal with Don Brennan and Bruce Garrioch for two days instead of one (OOOooooOOOOO, Chris Neil vs. Johan Franzen, OOOOooooOO, I'm so scared! [Neil is a punk, and Franzen has no obligation to fight him]), and even MLive's Ansar Khan played up the Neil-vs-Franzen spiel before suggesting something I don't believe will occur:

2. When will Daniel Alfredsson announce his retirement? It seems like Alfredsson, who turns 42 next month, is done. He hasn't skated at Joe Louis Arena in several weeks and expressed frustration to Red Wings general manager Ken Holland that his back hasn't progressed to the point where he could even practice with the team.

The Red Wings are giving him ample time to decide, but if Alfredsson is set on retiring, when and where would he make the announcement?

Chances are he'd hold a press conference in Ottawa, where he spent his first 17 NHL seasons and served as Senators captain from 1999-2013.

Would he make the announcement while the Red Wings are in town? Detroit visits Ottawa on Tuesday and on Dec. 27.

Doing so before a game would be a distraction, and it sounds like Ken Holland's pushing Alfredsson pretty hard to give 'er one more month.

Also of note from Khan is a Wings scoreless and winless streak against the Rangers, who host the Wings in one of those stupid "NBC Rivalry Night" games:

The Rangers and Henrik Lundqvist shut out the Red Wings twice at MSG, where Detroit hasn't won since Dec. 6, 2009.

The Rangers, 5-4-1 heading into Monday's game vs. St. Louis, are dealing with a decimated defense. Dan Boyle (hand), Ryan McDonagh (separated shoulder) and Kevin Klein (foot contusion) are out. In addition, John Moore is serving a five-game suspension.

Simple stats:

Shots in Buffalo 38-21 Detroit. Detroit out-shot Buffalo 10-7 in the 1st, 7-6 in the 2nd, 17-8 in the 3rd and 4-0 in OT.

Special teams: Detroit went 0-for-4 in 8:00 of PP time; Buffalo went 0-for-4 in 5:17 of PP time.

Goaltending: Jimmy Howard stopped 19 of 21 shots in regulation and OT in Detroit, but gave up 2 of 3 shootout goals; Michal Neuvirth stopped 36 of 38 shots for Buffalo but stopped 2 of 3 shootout shooters.

MSG picked the 3 stars, and they picked Chris Stewart, Zemgus Girgensons and Michal Neuvirth.

The Wings' goals: Tatar (3) from Sheahan (3) and Datsyuk (5) at 12:55 of the 1st, even strength;

Datsyuk (5) from Abdelkader (5) and Smith (2) at 4:27 of the 3rd, even strength.

Faceoffs 36-28 Detroit (Detroit won 56%);

Blocked shots 18-3 Buffalo;

Missed shots 16-5 Detroit (attempts 72-29 Detroit; Detroit had 38 shots on Neuvirth and another 34 wide/blocked);

Hits 14-7 Buffalo;

Giveaways 5-4 Buffalo;

Takeaways 4-2 Buffalo (possession changes 8-7 Buffalo).

Individual stats of note:

Datsyuk went 18-and-7 (72%) on faceoffs;

Zetterberg led the Wings with 5 shots, but Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Jurco and Franzen had 4 shots;

Nyquist, Zetterberg and DeKeyser hit Sabres players 3 times;

Smith, Abdelkader, Zetterberg and Helm missed the net 2 times;

Jurco led the Wings with 2 hits;

Giveaways were tagged to Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Miller and Ericsson;

Smith and Zetterberg had the Wings' takeaways;

DeKeyser actually led the Wings in ice time with 25:03 and Smith was second with 24:55; Jurco was last with 11:18 and the Glendening line actually got 3rd-line ice time for once;

Despite his assist Smith finished at -2, and the Wings were "even" overall.

At 7 AM and coming off a bad anxiety attack, I don't give a shit about what the Sabres said, so here's a quick survey of the Wings' comments:

Zetterberg, Babcock and Tatar were blunt in their comments to the Detroit News's Ted Kulfan:

"Any team that hasn't won a lot, when they still hang around in a game, they're dangerous," Henrik Zetterberg said. "If you look at their lineup, they have some good players, and their goalie (Michal Neuvirth) played well and unfortunately we couldn't get it done."

The Sabres won the shootout 2-1 with Gustav Nyquist the lone goal scorer — Pavel Datsyuk and Zetterberg getting stopped by Neuvirth, who stopped 36 shots before the shootout.

Buffalo played the night before, losing 5-0 in Pittsburgh. But the Sabres came out and played suffocating defense, stalled the Red Wings enough to stay close, and earned a hard-fought two points.

The Red Wings were disappointed with only the one point.

"We did a ton of good things, we had unbelievable scoring chances, and we didn't score," coach Mike Babcock said. "You have to give them credit. But we had the puck most of the night, we had opportunities, but we didn't finish. Were we as good as we could have been? I don't think so."

...

"The first 10 minutes (of the game) there were no shots, no nothing, the fans (were quiet) but that's no excuse," Tatar said. "We have to work around something like that and play our game as hard as we can for 60 minutes."

Also of note from Kulfan:

The quick pace appeared to affect Franzen, who hadn't played since Oct. 17. Franzen played 16 minutes 19 seconds, had four shots, with one blocked shot.

… Brian Lashoff played his first game of the season, replacing Kyle Quincey (day-to-day, ankle). Daniel Cleary was the other healthy scratch.

Tatar and Babcock made similar comments to the Free Press's Helene St. James:

"It was kind of sloppy game," Tomas Tatar said. "We have to find our way to win these kind of games. Instead of pushing them and hold our tempo, we kind of fall asleep. We have to be better, create more offense."

The Wings have 38 shots on Michal Neuvirth, put the puck behind him in overtime, and limited the Sabres to 21 shots. Coach Mike Babcock said he didn't think the Wings started poorly, but, "we let them hang around. Were we lolly-gagging around? I didn't think that. But where we as good as we could have been? I didn't think so.

"We did a ton of good things. We had unbelievable scoring chances and didn't score. It's not like we did everything terrible, we didn't at all. Would we have liked to get the second point? Yes. A team plays the night before, you should jump all over them from start to finish. We talked about it. We were unable to do it. Give them credit. But we had the puck all night, had lots of opportunity to finish."

...

Zetterberg put the puck in the net midway through overtime, but the goal was waived off because Johan Franzen was in the crease, though there wasn't much contact. "We were in the crease," Babcock said. "Don't be in the crease."

Perhaps Sunday's experience can serve as a good lesson: Don't be overconfident just because an opponent rarely wins. Let them hang around, and that's what happens.

St. James noted that the Wings were less than surprised by Datsyuk's performance...

“When I am on the ice, it’s still like I’m on the pond playing with my friends,” he said. “I remind my head, it’s fun. When you jump on the ice, fun is coming.”

Datsyuk suffered an injured shoulder in the first exhibition game, sidelining him four weeks, two overlapping into the regular season. Where mortals need time to get their game legs back — witness Johan Franzen, who returned from a groin injury Sunday after missing two weeks — Datsyuk warmed up in no time. After one assist in each of his first two games, Datsyuk had a goal, a goal and an assist, and two goals and one assist entering the Buffalo game. He has 10 points overall.

“Pav is the Magic Man, he’s playing really well,” Tomas Tatar said. “Everybody knows that they have to be aware of him. He created a penalty on them and a power play for us in overtime, and we had a chance to win the game there. He’s playing unreal for us.”

Coach Mike Babcock said of Datsyuk, “Tonight, again, I thought he was magic.”

And she gave Zetterberg the last word:

Z SAYS: "We got enough chances to score more goals," Zetterberg said. "I think I had at least five quality chances. ... We have to do a lot better. We created enough chances. When Pavel had his chance, he scored. More of us have to be like him."

The Wings blew a TON of points--I'd say a good 15--during the 2013-14 season because they let their opponents up from the mat, not scoring more than 2 goals and consistently giving up 3rd period leads because they weren't able to win the race to 3 goals. That pattern reappeared on Sunday evening.

MLive's Ansar Khan took note of the fact that the "stats" favored the Wings...

The Buffalo Sabres were 2-9-1, had scored 12 goals all season and were shut out in five of their previous eight games.

The Detroit Red Wings had defeated the Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings two nights earlier and were off to an impressive 6-2-2 start.

Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg are playing great and Johan Franzen was back from his groin injury. The Red Wings had won eight in a row from Buffalo and were 13-1-1 in their past 15 vs. the Sabres, who figured to be fatigued after playing the night before.

And at least Tatar's coming around:

After Brian Flynn opened the scoring at 6:55 of the first, chipping in a shot over Jimmy Howard, Tatar tied it at 12:55. Following a dominant shift from Datsyuk, Zetterberg and Justin Abdelkader, Tatar corralled the puck behind the Buffalo net, skated along the boards and across the ice, eluding a defender, and snapped in a wrist shot from beyond the faceoff circle.

"The shift before the guys had lots of pressure, lots of chances," Tatar said. "They went and changed, but their guys stayed on the ice, so they were really tired. I got the puck and kind of walked around and (Niklas Kronwall) made a good play in front of the net. He (provided) the screen and the puck went through."

There's nothing interesting in the AP's recap past Neuvirth's quote, but NHL.com's Joe Yerdon offered a few more quotes of note, starting with Neuvirth:

"I was talking to the ref a couple times during the game and he said, he told me, 'I know he's standing in the crease so whenever they're going to score a goal I'm going to disallow it,'" Neuvirth said. "I was glad he actually did it."

The Red Wings did not argue the call.

"We were in the crease. Don't be in the crease," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said. "It was a disallowed goal."

The Red Wings out-shot the Sabres 4-0 in overtime, but were unable to put one legally past Neuvirth. The Sabres took advantage of the added opportunity in the shootout.

"We had a power play in the overtime. We have to score one of those," Detroit forward Tomas Tatar said. "Unfortunately we didn't do that. And a shootout is 50-50, they scored more goals than we did, and they won the game."

...

"We want to win it in regulation, that's the whole thing," Smith said. "We should've put more points on the board."

Zetterberg's comments to DetroitRedwings.com's Bill Roose might as well take us out...

“We have to bear down better,” said Zetterberg, who registered a game-high five shots on goal. “We created enough chances. When Pavel (Datsyuk) had his chance he took care of business. More of us got to be like him, when you got a chance put it away.”

Detroit fired a season-high 38 shots on goal and had a goal in overtime disallowed, but only slipped two goals behind Buffalo goalie Michal Neuvirth.

“We got almost 40 shots and had one goal disallowed so I think we created enough,” Zetterberg said.

...

For all of the good they did do Sunday, the shootout loss, Detroit’s second of the season, really irked Zetterberg.

“Yeah, it does,” he said, “but I think we should have finished this before” it reached that point.

Damn straight.

Going forward, DetroitRedWings.com's Craig Peterson penned a, "Look Ahead in Hockeytown," previewing all four games that the Wings play over the next seven days (including next Sunday's game against the Bolts), and he spoke with the Wings about managing their energy on the road:

“It’s a little bit different grind, (not) sleeping in your own bed,” center Darren Helm said. “You’re not familiar with places, the dressing room, different situations may pop up. You just have to adapt. It’s more of a mental grind than anything. Nothing that we all haven’t really faced but something new for this year. We haven’t had our first trip. So eating right, getting sleep, just things that we need to be conscious of.”

Having picked up a point in three straight games now, The Wings are 2-1-2 on the road this year and hope to build off of that after going 21-15-5 last season.

Yuck and "yeck," 2-and-3. Not good enough.

“We feel like we’ve got something good going,” Ericsson said. “We’ve had a pretty tough schedule with teams we’ve played here (in Detroit) but nothing is easy in this league, we’ve noticed that. We have to play at the top of our game to beat anyone and when we do, we can beat anyone.”

Winning on the road is never easy but having the ability to take care of business in the opposition’s building is paramount for a team to have success. Away games take teams out of their comfort zones and the Wings can find out a lot about themselves during this road trip. A strong showing this week would add yet another piece to the puzzle, proving their ability to compete in future road games.

“I’m conscious of what the schedule is but we’ve caught four teams on back-to-backs already this year,” coach Mike Babcock said. “We’ve had an unbelievable schedule. New York is going to catch us back to back but I don’t worry about all that stuff…I always say, year-after-year, day-after-day, if you win today everything’s OK and that’s what we’re going to try to do.”

Peterson continues with the aforementioned previews, and while I can't embed it, FSD posted Mike Babcock's interview with John Keating. He was no-nonsense, no excuses.

Fox 2's Woody Woodriffe, the Detroit News's Bob Wojnowski and the Free Press's Jamie Samuelssen also spoke about the Wings on Fox 2's Sportsworks...

 

And I'll post a prospect catch-up entry after I get some sleep, but the most noteworthy item comes from the Guelph Mercury's Tony Saxon, who reports that Tyler Bertuzzi's going to be sitting out a few games for a hit to the head:

The Storm did suffer one big loss in the [Saturday's 3-2 win over Barrie], as Tyler Bertuzzi was given a five-minute major for head checking and a game misconduct for a hard hit on Barrie's C.J. Garcia late in the second period.

Garcia was not seriously injured on the play but the penalty comes with an automatic two-game suspension and will be reviewed by the league to determine if any supplementary discipline is warranted.

"The puck was on the guy's tape and it was a clean hit," Walker said. "For me, I thought it was a really clean hit, a really hard, low, hands down, hard hit. But I have no idea (what the league will say)."

Personally, I'm just trying to work through my depression and anxiety as I am able, and I'd rather write a 12-hours-late "quick take" than nothing.

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Comments

BenjaminKGT500's avatar

Chris Osgood (I guess we’re stuck with Ozzie for the road trip) suggested

Is he working for free or something? Its his third year, somebody at FSD has to realize by now that Osgood is in the wrong line of work

 

Posted by BenjaminKGT500 on 11/03/14 at 07:44 AM ET

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I also see that Tyler Myers looks very big and very fast when he has the puck, but on the Tatar 1-1 goal and the shift that led up to it, as he chased Zetterberg around the ice and then passively waived at Tatar’s shot, he looked like a big pylon out there—and he looked baffled on the Datsyuk goal, too.

That’s because Myers spent his entire shift chasing Pav’s line around and was dead tired by the time Tatar came on.
Give the guy a break. He actually looked very good out there. I wish Wings could get him, but not for Mantha price.

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 07:51 AM ET

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By the way, since when did standing in the crease become illegal? Did I miss the rule change? Didn’t they change the rule back in 2000 to NOT automatically disallow goals when a player is in the crease? After the Brett Hull Cup winning goal. There has to be actual interference with the goalie

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 07:54 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

The rule is weird and it can’t be reviewed, so it’s the ref’s discretion:

“If a goalkeeper, in the act of establishing his position within his goal crease, initiates contact with an attacking player who is in the goal crease, and this results in an impairment of the goalkeeper’s ability to defend his goal, and a goal is scored, the goal will be disallowed.”

So the goalie can totally bump a player in his goal crease and he gets a freebie because it’s the player’s responsibility to allow the goalie to make a save.

Franzen was in the crease, no doubt, but Neuvirth sold it.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 08:04 AM ET

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So the goalie can totally bump a player in his goal crease and he gets a freebie because it’s the player’s responsibility to allow the goalie to make a save.

Franzen was in the crease, no doubt, but Neuvirth sold it.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 08:04 AM ET

He was in the crease, yes, but there was no contact made with the goalie until after the puck was in the net. Only then did Franzen’s ass touched Neuvirth
Bad call in my opinion. And I can totally see the same exact goal being allowed against the Wings

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 08:10 AM ET

Will's avatar

Nice article. Everything well covered.

It would sure be nice if they could crack down on the goalies initiating contact. Seems to me, to be the same thing as embellishment… their going out of their way to create contact and taking advantage of the purpose of the rule in the first place. That could be discerned by a simple review. If I can see it, Toronto surely can. But anyway, gotta stay out of the blue.

 

Posted by Will from Toledo on 11/03/14 at 08:21 AM ET

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Posted by Will from Toledo, Ohio on 11/03/14 at 08:21 AM ET

I don’t have a problem with goalies initiating contact with an attacking forward in their crease. Their crease is their space to work and does need to be protected to a certain extent. My issue with the no-goal from last night is that there was no contact until after the goal was scored.
And the fact that this is a not reviewable play is just plain dumb

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 08:27 AM ET

DrD's avatar

Hang in there, George. Thanks again for all you do.

On the no-goal call: If the League wants offence, why not allow any goal where there is no physical contact with the goalie? It’s not like Franzen was blocking his lateral movement, he was just blocking his view - who cares if he is in the paint?

Secondly, what is up with Jurco, I have never seen such a talented guy so snake-bitten. I would put Nestrasil back in if I were Babcock and let Jurco sit for a bit. I prefer Nesty’s overall game to Jurco’s at this point.

Posted by DrD on 11/03/14 at 08:35 AM ET

Nathan's avatar

This is so stupid. The rule is bad and needs to be changed. I never thought I’d say this, but the mid-‘90s black-and-white version of “in the crease = no goal, period” was better than the current wording. At least it was unambiguous.

Allowing goal/no-goal calls to be reviewed is not going to slow the game down. It will only slow the game down in the 10% of situations where there is actually very good reason for a detailed review. The NFL certainly isn’t a poster child for speedy games, but this is one thing they have down—as soon as an official signals touchdown, the video review officials are replaying that score over and over again, and then they radio down confirmation of the score, or a request to hold for further review. There is no reason, other than a lack of will and an absurd obsession with “tradition,” that the NHL cannot implement a similar system immediately.

If the NHL wants to speed up games, there are plenty of other things they could do. They could drop this dry scrape they added for OT games. They could drop the zamboni pass for SOs. They could easily cut at least 2 minutes from each intermission (and arguably as much as 5 minutes). They could allow pucks to hit the netting and remain in play. They could go back to calling icing the way I thought they were supposed to call it coming out of the lockout, where they were supposed to let play continue with no icing if the icing was a result of an attempted pass.

It would not be difficult at all to cut the time needed to complete a full game by 5 minutes.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 11/03/14 at 09:22 AM ET

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Franzen’s feet were definitely in the crease but he was in no way interfering with the goalie. However, given the propensity by the officials to call the Wings….seemingly more than any other team…then it was incumbent on Franzen to be fully aware of his positioning.

Had he moved out the the length go hi ski blades he would have been outside the blue paint.  Of course, even then, they may have invoked the “Homer rule” and claimed his posterior was in the plane of the crease.

I don’t know if it is just subjective on my part but, it seems that we get more questionable calls like than going against us, by far, than any other organization in this league. I watch countless instances where far more contact occurs than happened on this goal and the goal is ruled a good goal.

The Wings must have the record for called-back goals…..by a country mile….over the past 20 years.

Posted by NewfieWing on 11/03/14 at 09:25 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Secondly, what is up with Jurco, I have never seen such a talented guy so snake-bitten. I would put Nestrasil back in if I were Babcock and let Jurco sit for a bit. I prefer Nesty’s overall game to Jurco’s at this point.

Posted by DrD on 11/03/14 at 08:35 AM ET

Jurco is certainly making his case as the one who will be sent down when (and if) Weiss (ever) returns. Maybe that will give him some confidence, time to just play and stop overthinking.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Window Seat on the Captain's Ship on 11/03/14 at 10:16 AM ET

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Jurco is certainly making his case as the one who will be sent down when (and if) Weiss (ever) returns. Maybe that will give him some confidence, time to just play and stop overthinking.

Posted by MurrayChadwick on 11/03/14 at 10:16 AM ET

It’s not just Jurco, it’s the entire “kids” class, except for Nyquist. None of them have been really all that good. Tatar is a turnover machine, Sheahan and Helm and invisible for the most part.

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 10:20 AM ET

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Is he working for free or something? Its his third year, somebody at FSD has to realize by now that Osgood is in the wrong line of work

Exactly, I have little good to say about Osgood’s commentary. Get rid of Ozzie and bring back Murph.

Posted by Steve in SE MI on 11/03/14 at 10:30 AM ET

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Exactly, I have little good to say about Osgood’s commentary.

I’ve always liked Ozzie and I’m a defender when it comes to the HHOF argument, but when it comes to colour commentary, his detractors are right: Osgood is no good.

Posted by Garth on 11/03/14 at 11:00 AM ET

RWBill's avatar

Franzen is fully 100% at fault for the goal being waved off. 

Unlike the Abdelkader incident, Franzen was not battling and wrestling with a defender resulting in his body pushing into the paint.  The Wings were on a 4x3 and no one was busting Franzen’s balls.  There was more space on the ice than the entire game.  His mental laziness and total lack of awareness put him squarely in a location where the goalie could take advantage of his in-the-paint location, which he did, moving forward, extending his arm and pushing off Franzen.  He clearly demonstrated that Franzen’s location was in his space.

All Franzen had to do, again being completely untouched by the shorthanded Sabres, was set up outside instead of putting his feet all the way into the paint where an attentive ref had fixated his attention.

The goalie was adept and smart for immediately making contact with Franzen in the crease.

Franzen’s inattentiveness cost us the game winning goal and a point in the standings.

Posted by RWBill on 11/03/14 at 11:26 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

I think more than Franzen cost the Wings a point in the standings. The Wings never displayed the killer instinct to get that 3rd goal in regulation, and they spent the post-game saying that they should’a had the game taken care of within 60 minutes.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 11:28 AM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Eh, Kronwall throwing passes into feet and Nyquist’s unwillingness to one-time the puck should have made it so the only place Franzen’s heels were a minute later was on their way back to the locker room.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/03/14 at 11:44 AM ET

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I would consider putting Gustafsson is just for the shootouts. I think Babcock has to have a talk with Howard to make sure it does not mess with his head, but this is too obvious that Howard just cannot win shootouts. Allowing 2 goals (and maybe making 1 save) in shootouts on a regular basis is just not good enough.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 11:45 AM ET

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I would consider putting Gustafsson is just for the shootouts. I think Babcock has to have a talk with Howard to make sure it does not mess with his head, but this is too obvious that Howard just cannot win shootouts. Allowing 2 goals (and maybe making 1 save) in shootouts on a regular basis is just not good enough.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 11:45 AM ET

How about Pav and Z score on their attempts

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 11:46 AM ET

George Malik's avatar

Despite the 38 shots there was a whole crapton of waiting for the perfect shot. When you have another 34 shot attempts hit Sabres players or go wide, you’re doing it wrong.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 11:47 AM ET

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How about Pav and Z score on their attempts

If this somehow defends Howard for his shootout failures, that’s lame. Yes, of course if we score 3 goals in every shootout, we will win most of the time, but what’s the league percentage of scoring a shootout goal, 33%? That’s what we scored yesterday, 1 out of 3. Our shootout record in the last 2 years is too abysmal, those are important points, need to “look after that and fix it” as Babcock says.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 12:20 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Howard could talk to Chris Osgood about this whole, “Turning over your blocker hand” thing. That was Osgood’s weakness and Howard seems to be particularly vulnerable on the stick side.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 12:25 PM ET

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That was Osgood’s weakness and Howard seems to be particularly vulnerable on the stick side.

5 hole remains a big issue too. Howard pretty much makes a save in a shootout only when the forward over dribbles. If the forward just comes in and shoots, it’s a goal.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 12:38 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

To me, his biggest issue is that he can be backed in TREMENDOUSLY QUICKLY if a shooter comes at him with speed. The blocker side opens right up and the five-hole opens up because he’ll back in from five feet in front of the crease to the middle of the crease incredibly easily. Part of being a good shootout goalie is not matching a shooter’s speed and trying to bet on making the shooter make the first move to get around you.

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 12:42 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Our shootout record in the last 2 years is too abysmal, those are important points, need to “look after that and fix it” as Babcock says.

Our shooting percentage since the start of the 2012-13 season is 21.5%

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/03/14 at 12:43 PM ET

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If this somehow defends Howard for his shootout failures, that’s lame.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 12:20 PM ET

What’s lame is picking on a guy who has been one of the best players on the team so far.
We scored 1 goal out of 3 and they scored 2 out of 3, not that big of a difference, considering that our best scores didn’t score.

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 12:47 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Man, the comments section is acrid today. Are we all pissed off about the candidates we have to vote for tomorrow? *#$%@& vs. *#$%@&?

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 12:50 PM ET

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Man, the comments section is acrid today. Are we all pissed off about the candidates we have to vote for tomorrow? *#$%@& vs. *#$%@&?

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 12:50 PM ET

Sh!t vs crap is a choice every election cycle, unfortunately.

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 12:51 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Who’s acrid?  I’m agreeing with VPalmer.  Something needs to be fixed in the way the Red Wings handle shootouts.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/03/14 at 12:56 PM ET

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What’s lame is picking on a guy who has been one of the best players on the team so far.

When was I picking on Howard? Of course, he has been tremendous during the games so far this season, but during shootouts he is just plain terrible (and this is not a new issue). This is not picking on the guy, this is reality. Those shootout points are too important. Gustafsson is much better at that, so that’s why I would consider making a switch just for the shootouts. I have no issues with Howard during the games.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:00 PM ET

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Gustafsson is much better at that, so that’s why I would consider making a switch just for the shootouts. I have no issues with Howard during the games.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:00 PM ET

From last year
Gustafson - .727
Howard - .692

Not that big of a difference and Jimmy percentage is not that bad, considering that he had a bad year last year.

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 01:08 PM ET

perfection's avatar

besides that… if you put Gus in JUST for the shootout after sitting all night, his chance of a groin pull is about 95%

I’d much rather take a goalie who’s warmed up and has their head in the game, regardless of their past win record. Howie has come up huge in shootouts in the past. The fact remains it’s just a dumb way to end a game. Hope the double OT 3v3 starts next season.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 11/03/14 at 01:46 PM ET

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What’s Howard’s win/loss record in the shootouts in the last 2 years?  I am just curious (and could not quickly find it) and I understand it depends on the shooters too.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:47 PM ET

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What’s Howard’s win/loss record in the shootouts in the last 2 years?  I am just curious (and could not quickly find it) and I understand it depends on the shooters too.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:47 PM ET

http://www.nhl.com/ice/shootoutstats.htm

here you go

Posted by George0211 on 11/03/14 at 01:49 PM ET

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The fact remains it’s just a dumb way to end a game

No matter what we think about it, the tied games end in a shootout and we better fix this problem sooner than later (I mean our record in them). When at the end of the season 4-5 points separate 4th seed and 8th seed, we can say “oh, it was because of those stupid shootouts” or we can find a way to fix the problem. Maybe Dats, Z, Tatar and Nyquist should spend a significantly more time of practicing them and I mean before each game and taking into account who is the opposing goalie. Maybe it will help, maybe not, but something has to be done imo.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:53 PM ET

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http://www.nhl.com/ice/shootoutstats.htm

Thank you, George.

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 02:03 PM ET

perfection's avatar

Posted by VPalmer on 11/03/14 at 01:53 PM ET

right, but the REASON it’s dumb is precisely because there isn’t a whole lot you can do. I mean, do you really think Datsyuk just needs to practice? Seriously? Or that Howie hasn’t thought to work on breakaways before? Or that the coaches just haven’t thought about actually scouting the other team’s goalies? I hate to break it to you but the team is likely just as prepared as every other team in the league. It’s a crapshoot. Yeah, some guys are better than others, but there’s just not a whole lot that can be done from a team standpoint. It’s exactly why it’s a dumb way to end a game. It doesn’t really have to do with actual hockey all that much. I’d personally rather the team spend practices focusing on being a better team and winning more games in regulation. I’d rather they work on that 4v3 power play. If shootouts are their focus in practice, they better be pretty damn perfect in every other realm because that sounds like quite a luxury.

I am of course with you that I’d like to see us win some more of them… but I also think we will. It’s a coin flip basically and probability says we will win some an we will lose some. I think it just stings more when you lose one in a game you should have easily won in regulation.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 11/03/14 at 02:25 PM ET

Red Winger's avatar

I think it’s perfectly legitimate to recognize that Howard has been both very good during most regulation and OT, and just plain bad in shootouts.

Babs is right, those are important points we’re giving away.

Posted by Red Winger from Sault Ste Marie, MI on 11/03/14 at 02:34 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 11/03/14 at 02:40 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Sh!t vs crap is a choice every election cycle, unfortunately.

Unfortunately true.

Posted by bigfrog on 11/03/14 at 10:11 PM 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.