Editor’s Note: This may say “By: Pez” but it was actually written by Chip Fisk, who is someone we believe would be a good fit for the fourth writer. Please leave any feedback. Also, he did about 95% of the photoshops you see, which is impressive as well because it proves that we’re the only lazy ones. Any editing/formatting errors were done by Pez. Also, I didn’t make a scoreboard. Deal with it.
HEY!!! Did you guys know that the Detroit Red Wings have won 11 Stanley Cups??! That’s right…11! All of their fans will tell you that, even though 2008 might as well be 1908 given how long it feels since the Wings last reached the NHL’s pinnacle of success. This is Hockeytown! They’ll tell you THAT themselves, too!
If Montreal fans are the 50 year old guys still trying to be relevant by hyping up those championships that they won in high school, then Detroit fans are the 21 year old version. In college…still wearing their letter jackets around campus. The memories of their glory are still fresh in their minds, but definitely in the past, regardless.
Even though the final score suggested otherwise, the Detroit Red Wings are a team that, like the city they play in, is in noticeable decline. The city has transformed from the center of American manufacturing prowess into a morally and economically bankrupt shithole. Its most newsworthy citizen, Ted Nugent, only remains in the public eye due to increasingly inflammatory statements he makes regarding the president and other democratic politicians, all while revealing a mind, heart, and mouth so vile that you can’t help but feel a bit sorry for him. Oh…and there’s a distinct possibility that his underground doomsday bunker is close to Tim Thomas’, as well.
While not declining as precipitously as Detroit itself, the Red Wings have gone from Stanley Cup finalist in 2009 to a team struggling to make the playoffs both last year and this year. The Red Wings have long crafted an image of blue collar, rough and tumble hockey. This team has given the sport ‘The Production Line’, ‘The Bruise Brothers’, the stoic professionalism and leadership of Stevie Y, and ‘The Russian Five’ over the past decades. Now? Now this team is stocked with so many Swedes (and Euros, in general) that it’s hard to distinguish whether one is reading a hockey roster or an IKEA catalog. While Ken Holland and Coach Hair should be commended for developing the 4th-6th reaches into ACTUAL NHL players (and stars), the Red Wings just don’t look like they once did. Now that I think about it, I’m pretty sure that I had a Franzen bookcase in college. I digress, but in the span of 60 or so years, the Red Wings have gone from this:
But I digress. Much like the streak-ending Montreal contest on March 24, this was Boston’s game to lose. This was NOT the Thanksgiving eve game in Detroit where the B’s were simply embarrassed. The Bruins – with their sloppy play, stupid turnovers throughout the entire game, and lack of any noticeable physical edge – STILL should have won this game tonight.
The first period was bad tonight. I’m talking a ‘no amount of towels on the bed are going to keep the sheets clean’ kind of bad period. For the first seven minutes or so, both teams looked listless and uninspired out there, which probably wasn’t the ideal way that NBC wanted to showcase two Original Six teams both trying to stake their respective claims in the playoffs. It wasn’t until Torey Krug’s long seam pass to Bergy did the Bruins show any signs of life. When the red hot Bergeron failed to convert, it was the first signal that things might not go Boston’s way. The next, of course, was Krug’s tally that wasn’t…when his goal was disallowed due to Chara being…Chara? I don’t know, but it was horseshit. Undaunted, Johnny Boychuk answered with a blast of his own! 2-0, Bruins! Er…1-0, Bruins!!!
The second period was noteworthy for just one sequence. Beaten by Tomas Tater (he doesn’t deserve a proper spelling), Bergy gave the Wings an early power play after he clutched Tater as he skated by him. Either he was admitting defeat on that shift, or he was trying to impregnate the young forward. Given how hot he’s been playing as of late and the growing Hart Trophy buzz around him, the latter idea might just have some legs. “But men can’t do that to other men!” Oh, really?
I have no idea where I was going with that. Truth be told, I was just really proud of this photoshop I made this week and wanted to use it. Somewhat clean lines. Good overall fit. Skin tones are off, but c’mon. It’s not the REAL Photoshop software! Frankly, I don’t care if it makes sense or not.
The teams went into the third period tied, which boded well for Boston. After all, the Bruins’ goal differential in the third period this year…as Jack Edwards is sure to mention EVERY…SINGLE…BROADCAST….is tops in the NHL. If any team is to take control during the third, it had to be the Bruins. Right? Wrong! After Bergy once again mocked pain and the idea of injury to setup KARRRRRRRRRRL! on the powerplay, things were looking up.
Alas, the Wings would answer on troubling goals from Tomas Jerko and the ‘even hotter than Patrice Bergeron and Jarome Iginla COMBINED’ Gustav Nyquil. On the first, Meszaros just looked LOST. After losing the puck in his pants (???), he allowed Jerko to occupy prime real estate in the slot without much opposition and then drive home an uncontested rebound. Earlier in the game, he nearly gave up a short handed goal to Darren Helmet after getting beaten wide BADLY (more on that later). The winner, as most of us know, occurred after Nyquil took advantage of a bad Bruins change and made Big Z look like a cone. Action intensified, Tuukka found the bench for an extra attacker, Howard was peppered with more shots…but the Wings held on to win, 3-2.
– I enjoy watching Dougie Hamilton mature before our very eyes. Even though every ‘off’ game is seemingly blown out of proportion because he’s not Phil Kessel, he’s going to be a very good two way defender. He might never be a 50-60 point guy from the blueline, but consistent 30-40 point seasons and solid play in his own zone is very realistic. He was involved in the play offensively, and his play breaking up a 2 on 1 late was something you typically see from a 10 year vet. Soon he’ll be a man. Soon…he’ll be Douglas.
– Loui Eriksson played pretty well considering the line shuffle. Even though his first season in Boston has been disappointing due to the obvious concussion reasons, he’s a proven Top 6 forward who now helps to give the B’s the best third line in the NHL. While not having the chemistry with Krejci and Looch, he gave them a different dimension tonight.
– This game really didn’t mean THAT much. Losing it? Meh. It happens.
– Meszaros. Yikes. It’s games like tonight which show why his acquisition at the deadline wasn’t more widely hailed by pundits. Sure, he’s an experienced d man. But he’s definitely no Dennis Seidenberg.
– What was with all of those empty seats at the Joe? Isn’t this ‘Hockeytown’?! It says so RIGHT ON THE ICE! Why aren’t you there for a game between your hot team and the team with the most points in the NHL?! With playoff seeding on the line, no less?
– Hey Jarome…You’re feeling ok? Was this just a routine night off or what? Please don’t be injured. Now I realize that the last part is a request and not a question, it remains just as important.
– Along the injury front, can anyone update us on whether Dennis Seidenberg might be able to play in the playoffs? Is Ray Lewis’ deer antler spray banned in the NHL? Because, uh, Meszaros.