If you can’t tell by the fact that I call these things Good, Bad, WTF? these are where I can just talk about the game off the cuff and not have to worry about putting together convincing arguments or statistical analysis (Also I don’t feel unprofessional when I cuss).
But before we get to the fun part, I want to begin on a somber note and once again offer my condolences to Ken Daniels and his family after the tragic loss of his son Jamie on Wednesday morning. Jamie was only 23 years old, and I cannot imagine what they must be going through. Our thoughts are with you Ken.
Now, onto the game.
I love Thomas Vanek. Did you know he has a point in 4 straight games? Because he has a point in 4 straight games. Not only was Larkin’s goal gorgeous AND on our abysmal fucking power play, but it was an amazing assist by Vanek. He threaded the shot through so many bodies and I’m telling you, good players know when someone is near the net for a rebound. Great play from the beginning to end.
Really I thought the entire offense played well this game. I mean the Wings actually outshot a team for once. There’s not even a joke there, I literally cannot remember the last game where that happened. They were constantly hammering Sergei BOBROVSKY, and it’s just unfortunate for the Wings that they played him on a night that he was unequivocally the #1 cop on the force. The fact that the Wings didn’t score in the last two minutes blew my mind. I thought Riley Sheahan was going to actually break down in tears when Bob made that glove save.
The Good giveth, and the Good taketh away.
Petr Mrazek was without a doubt the bad this game. I don’t want to sound too harsh because I like St. Petr, but let’s be brutally honest with ourselves: Petr Mrazek lost that game for us. Not the refs, not the defense, but Petr Mrazek’s fucking glove lost us that game. When Chris “Underrated Outside of Detroit/Fantastic Hair” Osgood calls you out in the intermission and brings up when he coaches you, you’ve done fucked up. Goals 2 and 3 were 100% percent because he did not catch the puck and instead caused a rebound situation (I’ll get to the whole freeze/play the puck thing in the WTF, obviously that was the most WTF thing to happen all game). He’s got to be better than that.
Also, that short handed goal against pretty much sums up our Power Play. I almost wish Larkin’s goal wasn’t on the PP so I could say “Look, Detroit’s Power Play is so fucking bad it actually causes goals against!” Maybe that would be enough for coaching to do LITERALLY ANYTHING to improve our PP over the rest of the season.
Alright let’s talk about the elephant in the room.
Petr Mrazek fucked up when he tried to cover that puck, okay? I checked rule 63.2 and it’s pretty clear, unless he caused a rebound by coming out of the crease to cut down the angle Mrazek is not allowed to freeze the puck that far out. But that’s not what happened. He screwed up the glove save and then bullrushed the puck like a Mac truck to cover it, which should have been a delay of game penalty.
But I’m still going to put this on the refs, because it’s their goddamn inconsistency that caused that cluster of a goal.
Mrazek had the puck covered for FOUR. MOTHER. FUCKING. SECONDS. And you know what happened? That ref is telling him to move it, move it. You can see his whistle near his lips. It’s pretty obvious what happened here. The ref knew the rule but thought he would be generous and just yell at Mrazek while everyone is skating around to move the puck OR he will get a penalty. Mrazek, not wanting a penalty but probably pissed the freeze didn’t happen, throw the puck away and simply messed up. Oh thank you Mr. Ref, wonderful job there. I hope you apply the same logic to the rest of your penalties. You know, tell the goalie to hurry and get the puck out of the trapezoid or it’ll be a penalty. Tell the guy to stop the hook MIDHOOK or you’ll call a penalty. Tell him to hurry up and get off the dude who just got boarded or it’ll be a boarding penalty.
THAT’S NOT HOW PENALTIES WORK.
If you’re going to call it, call it. If you’re not going to call it, let the play go. Mrazek should have gotten a penalty. He would have been pissed but it would have been correct. Instead the ref waited, causing Mrazek to be out of his net with a play developing and only decided a couple seconds in to tell him to play the puck. At this point Mrazek is probably confused because, hey, if it was going to be a penalty shouldn’t it have been called already? But he’s not going to ignore the ref and purposely take a penalty, now is he?
This is the same problem that we have with the DoPS handing out their suspensions almost arbitrarily. Without consistency, all we get are pissed off fans.
Sunday vs the Flyers at home, game 2 of the longest home stand of the season. The wings have 2 wins in the last 10 home games I believe. Word cannot described how badly we need those 2 points.