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Lebda out; Lilja in

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Mattias Ritola expected to make Red Wings playoff debut; Andreas Lilja back in for Brett Lebda in Game 4

By Ansar Khan

May 06, 2010, 10:40AM

DETROIT -- The Detroit Red Wings will make a couple of lineup changes tonight as they try to stave off elimination against the San Jose Sharks in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals.

Forward Mattias Ritola is expected to make his playoff debut, replacing Jason Williams. And on defense, Andreas Lilja will go back in for Brett Lebda.

Ritola is expected to play on a line with Justin Abdelkader, his former linemate on the Grand Rapids Griffins, and Kris Draper.

http://www.mlive.com/redwings/index.ssf/2010/05/mattias_ritola_expected_to_mak.html

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I DON'T agree with this move. Lebda's speed was a great addition. Get rid of Ericsson. What is going on???

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Yeah, I've gotta say - the inclusion of Ericsson in the line-up has been a head scratcher for me.

I thought that Lilja's stay at home style paired really well with Lebda's speed and overall lack of defense. It was sort of like Lilja was Lebda's safety net. Not sure what they think they're gaining by leaving Ericsson in the line-up.

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Babs does have quite a boner for Ericsson.

Perhaps Ericsson has incriminating pictures...

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Lilja-Lebda should be the third pairing, they worked just fine during the 07/08 season and we all know how well that season turned out to be....

I'm not the only one who loathe Ericsson... give him a break already.

Edited by mindfly

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Ritola you ripper!!! Can't wait to see him play, he and Abdelakder are great mates and they were deadly together in Grand Rapids.

Lebda looked pretty reasonable in Game 3, hard to believe they took him out and not Small E.

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Should have been May instead of Ritola, and Lilja should have gone in for Ericsson.

Sub May in for Draper.

wings7 likes this

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Long term, Ericsson is better than Lebda for the team IMO, but short term/immediately after last game, surprised that Ericsson wasn't scratched for pinching so much on the OT goal.

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I feel like Ericcson is one of those people who only have a job because the boss is his relative. Why is he still here?

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Should have been May instead of Ritola, and Lilja should have gone in for Ericsson.

May is done as a Wing, why can't people understand this?

dobbles and edicius like this

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Long term, Ericsson is better than Lebda for the team IMO, but short term/immediately after last game, surprised that Ericsson wasn't scratched for pinching so much on the OT goal.

I wouldn't really call it pinching, he brought the puck up into the zone and stayed with the rush. I mean he could have peeled back but at the same time Willy haaaaaaaaas to hit the net.

Hossa4Life likes this

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I wouldn't really call it pinching, he brought the puck up into the zone and stayed with the rush. I mean he could have peeled back but at the same time Willy haaaaaaaaas to hit the net.

Right right.

In sudden death though, unless it's really there and open, just doesn't make sense to pinch/be overly aggressive IMO when the last goal decides everything. Don't want bad odd man rushes like what happened.

Williams does have to hit the net but at the same time, missed shots completely happen more so even though it is our favorite whipping boy, I can live with a shot completely missing the net from a long ways away more often than not.

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I feel like Ericcson is one of those people who only have a job because the boss is his relative. Why is he still here?

yeah its like holland wants it to work out soooo badly. a lot of players have bad sophomore years (if you can call this his sophomore year), IMO the few games we had this year with lil/lebda 3rd pair were our best defensive games.

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I like the Ritola/Williams move, but I would have also preferred to see Lilja in over Ericsson for sure.

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I thought the Lilja/Lebda paring was decent, and E has been bad lately. I don't understand this move at all.

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Lilja's in for Lebda because Brett Lebda sucks.

Ericcson has shown promise in the past, and it takes time for a defenceman to learn the game. This is great experience either way. Same for Howie.

55fan likes this

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It does scare me having Ericsson out there and it pains me to say that because i was a big fan of his :( I still hope he can be a force in the future but at the moment he is far from that

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I feel like Ericcson is one of those people who only have a job because the boss is his relative. Why is he still here?

Because Babcock gets a boner by Tall big hockeyplayers :ph34r:

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Yeah, I've gotta say - the inclusion of Ericsson in the line-up has been a head scratcher for me.

I thought that Lilja's stay at home style paired really well with Lebda's speed and overall lack of defense. It was sort of like Lilja was Lebda's safety net. Not sure what they think they're gaining by leaving Ericsson in the line-up.

I assume it's because Ericsson is big and the Sharks are too? Plus they want to get him as many NHL mins as possible. Holland will let Lebda walk this summer so there's no point in investing any time in him. It's not like a Lebda for Ericsson switch would make a real difference. I know people on LGW like to pretend that the most important players are the complementry forwards and depth defensemen but in real life we should be more concerned about the guys who play more than 10 mins a game.

I wouldn't really call it pinching, he brought the puck up into the zone and stayed with the rush. I mean he could have peeled back but at the same time Willy haaaaaaaaas to hit the net.

Also note that traditionally when one of your d-men goes deep into the offensive zone a forward is supposed to keep an eye on the play and stick around to cover for him. Ericsson shouldn't have pinched in there but at the same time had Willy hit the ******* net (honestly-- how can an NHL forward miss so often? Does he even show up for practice?) Ericsson would've been there for the rebound. Instead he missed and didn't bother covering for Ericsson by rushing back and supporting Rafalski.

Ericsson was stupid to make such a risky play but it's pretty moronic that no one else on the ice covered for him when he rushed down there-- it's not like they aren't expected to do that anyway.

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Ericsson will be be part of this team going forward, and he's no worse than Lebda ... provided he never gets within 20 feet of the opposing net for the duration of these playoffs.

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Ericsson usually isn't too bad when he plays with Lilja. Same with Lebda.

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