Game 74 – Minnesota @ Detroit – 22 for 21

Happy Birthday to Jimmy Howard. Wings continuing to tick off the last handful of games at the Joe. Giving the fans more to see with all these OT games, while simultaneously hurting their Lottery Odds.

The Good

Great game by the Birthday Boy. Lot of good saves, and in regulation only gave up 1 breakaway goal and 1 deflection goal. I’ll go ahead and call it here, if Jimmy had stayed healthy the Red Wings may have made the playoffs. When you look at the number of games we have that went to OT, and just remembering the games we had, it’s not hard to imagine. A healthy top of the league goaltender can easily push you over the edge if you get anything else working, and we had that until Jensen sat on him with his big fat butt.

Mike Green scored for his 12th on a great play near the end of the 1st to keep us tied up. I’ll hold off until the offseason but I think I’d be okay with Mike Green staying with us for next season. Tomas Tatar stays hot with another great goal, but the real standout to me was Nyquist. He made a great diving play to get the puck to Tatar for the goal, and he sprung AA for the breakaway OT winner. AA, again, scoring on a filthy back and forth that got Dubnyk to dive for it. That guy is so elite it’s not even funny. Future of the team.

The Bad

DDK was on ice for, and largely responsible by pinching, for the first goal against the Wings faced. Part of that is on Nielsen for not realizing he needed to get back to cover for DDK but I still like pointing out when Dekeyser is on ice and/or causes a goal against. It’s like Ericsson all over again. Speaking of, I actually miss our Swedish pylon.

Abby gets a goal waived off for goaltender interference, and I have no problem with the call. He also took a high sticking penalty earlier in the game. I don’t know what his role on the team is anymore. Is it just to be the pest? Because he’s overpaid for that, and if he is being a pest, he’s got to do it smart and not cause a goal against and a PK.

The WTF?

So the second goal was scored from almost the blue line by a player who hadn’t scored in I read, over 100 games. How did it go in?

Larkin oh my god, that’s awful. I’m not sure what he thought he could do. I know I instinctively reach my stick out for pucks but I suck and am not in the NHL. I gotta think, when it’s this kind of shot, you trust your goaltender. And Howard would have had that if it hadn’t gotten tipped by the end of Larkin’s stick.

Basically, if I see someone in the NHL do something I would do, I assume that it is a bad thing. And this was a bad thing.

Next Game 

Tomorrow and then again Tuesday. Uncharted territory here. I wonder how slow the Tuesday Red Wings will be.

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