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Abel to Yzerman

Toughness?  Winners Are Tough

Dateline: San Antonio. 
Subj: Toughness

72 and sunny here on the River Walk.  Well, I haven’t actually been to the River Walk but I hear it’s cool.  The Alamo? Now that’s a sight to behold.  Well, I haven’t had a chance to visit it, but I’ll bet it’s, you know, historic.

Brooke Army Medical Center?  Never heard of it?  You should have.  I spent an hour there yesterday and met a few heroes.  This isn’t the forum for it, but I’ll say it anyway:  you have servicemembers all over this nation recovering in hospitals just like Brooke.  Every single one of them I met yesterday, no matter how badly injured they are, have only one wish.

All they want is to re-join their units, get back to the sand or the sea.  So whether you lean to port or starboard, to these guys (and girls) it’s nothing but a sideshow.  They know their missions and they’re dedicated to it, despite the misgivings of many of our countrymen.

So, we were talking about toughness.  We we discussing toughness as it relates to getting shoved around a hockey rink and how we need “to get tougher before the playoffs.”  Did we need that toughness the night before against Calgary?  Traditionally, the Flames are grittier, more prone to violence and “tougher” than Detroit.  Yet, 50 shots later no one was talking about “an infusion of toughness.”  Naturally, a garbage team like Philly manhandles the Wings on the back end of a two-in-two and the hue and cry returns.

So, you want toughness.  You want Wunderkind Kenny Holland to deal for it, grow it, acquire it.  What’s your definition of “tough”?  If you’re one of the people bellowing for it today, enlighten me.  Who’s the tough guy you want brought in?  What’s the dramatic impact one player is going to have, one tough, gritty player? 

Toughness is not a deadline acquisition.  Grittiness is an organizational theme that starts with the scouting, continues through minor league philosophies then is realized at the NHL level with a team patterned around that style of play.  The Wings fall nowhere in that description.

I guess what I’m saying is this: Holland’s going to make a move, but giving up 5 in the third in Philly and watching his team get molested is not going to prompt him to revise his search criteria. 


Been a long couple of weeks, but it would appear that I’m back in business as far as posting goes.  As Jes Golbez pointed out, I should be ashamed for letting my real job get in the way of my posting regularity.  Jes, the bastard, is right again. I feel dirty. 

Would have been kind of nice to put Bubba in the rearview where he belongs last night.  It’s such a pleasant, consistent image…Bubba getting smaller in the mirror.  Would have been nice to put a little pressure on Bubba and see how he responds to second place for the first time in months.  Didn’t happen, but we all know there are 5 nights that will determine so much down the stretch.  The division, seedings and first-round matchups.

The Diggers tell me this morning that Hasek will start testing the wrist this week.  Osgood is two weeks away and MacDonald’s been exposed.  Does that mean Kenny’s looking at goalies on the trade front?  That idea makes me want to throw up in my mouth a little.  But…

More to follow.  Did I tell you it was 72 and sunny?

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About Abel to Yzerman

Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977.  No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y.  Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation.  There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature.  Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that. Your suggestions and critiques are welcome: wphoulihan@gmail.com