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31 Thoughts [Sportsnet]

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25. At his exit meeting last season, Jimmy Howard said he and the organization both discussed how he needed to get his save percentage from .910 to “.915 or .920.” Fourteen games into the season, it is .922.

“I don’t look at numbers anymore,” he laughed on Tuesday. “I used to when I was younger, but not looking comes with maturity. Sometimes it doesn’t tell the whole story. The only time I talk about it is with the media or my goalie coach. I have to be in my own little bubble, have to play well every single night. Give us a chance.”

Detroit isn’t up there with Buffalo, but after a rough start that could have gone off the cliff, they’ve battled and stabilized. “Last year, we found ways to lose. After the injuries (this year), some of our veterans have come back to calm things down. At the beginning, we were trying to do too much, and things snowball out of control.”

26. Howard joked that he’s “not that old,” but recognizes how much the organization is changing. “Being a Red Wing still means a lot to us who have been here. It’s no fun to be out of the playoffs. Everyone wants to be playing come springtime.” He didn’t want to get into it too deeply, but some time after an 8-2 loss to Boston in their fifth game of the season, there was an intense conversation between the players about how their play was not acceptable.

“We had to dig in. Play the right way. The good thing about this group is that it is not a cliquey team. We could be blunt with each other. Press the re-set button and demand we start doing things like winning battles.” What did he say? “I kinda keep my mouth shut.”

27. It has been reported that Howard, a free agent, will be extended. “There hasn’t been dialogue as of yet,” he said. “But everyone knows how I feel about the city and the organization. And how much it would mean to finish as a Red Wing.”

28. Finally, Howard says he’s really impressed with some of the younger players. “Dylan Larkin is leading us every night,” he said. What about the rookies? “Michael Rasmussen. The way it started for him was probably not ideal, but he’s now scored in three games in a row. Dennis Cholowski. Great skater with a great shot. Both guys have shown how they can contribute even though they are young.”

 

(That was published before last night's game, which saw Howard boost his SV% to .924.)

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I haven't been saying much about Howard or the goaltending in general, mainly because I kinda don't want to jinx things...but it really needs to be said: Howard and Bernier have both been outstanding for us over the past ten games or so. IMO, goaltending's the biggest reason why the team's had a great November. Is this level of goaltending sustainable? Probably not. But this is a good lesson in how valuable solid goaltending can be.

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2 hours ago, Dabura said:

I haven't been saying much about Howard or the goaltending in general, mainly because I kinda don't want to jinx things...but it really needs to be said: Howard and Bernier have both been outstanding for us over the past ten games or so. IMO, goaltending's the biggest reason why the team's had a great November. Is this level of goaltending sustainable? Probably not. But this is a good lesson in how valuable solid goaltending can be.

One thing I've noticed is that the team is doing a GREAT job of keeping guys on the outside.  Remember 8 years ago when we were getting 50 crappy shots a game and only scoring 2 goals?  Samuelsson with 15 sog every night from 45 feet away in the goalies chest?  Well, seems like we've been on the other side of that coin recently.

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10 minutes ago, Jonas Mahonas said:

One thing I've noticed is that the team is doing a GREAT job of keeping guys on the outside.  Remember 8 years ago when we were getting 50 crappy shots a game and only scoring 2 goals?  Samuelsson with 15 sog every night from 45 feet away in the goalies chest?  Well, seems like we've been on the other side of that coin recently.

Good observation.

I've mentioned a few times that Blashill's "scoring chances, not shot counts" philosophy has slowly won me over, but I've only talked about it re: our o-zone play. Our phalanx-esque zone defense is consistent with that philosophy: we're ok with allowing shots if all the shots are coming from outside the danger areas.

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5 hours ago, Dabura said:

Good observation.

I've mentioned a few times that Blashill's "scoring chances, not shot counts" philosophy has slowly won me over, but I've only talked about it re: our o-zone play. Our phalanx-esque zone defense is consistent with that philosophy: we're ok with allowing shots if all the shots are coming from outside the danger areas.

Exactly.  Howard's rebound control is good when the shots aren't from in tight.

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On 11/17/2018 at 3:55 AM, ChristopherReevesLegs said:

You need to catch up, they're planning on extending him per MLive.

"Never doubt Howie" - ancient LGW proverb

Yes, i did need to. Found the article. Says multiyear extension. I'm hoping that's not Holland code for " $6 million per until age 40". But 2, maybe 3 years between $4-5 million per is cool. Both goalies making $7-8 million per season together.

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On 11/22/2018 at 4:55 PM, Dabura said:

I haven't been saying much about Howard or the goaltending in general, mainly because I kinda don't want to jinx things...but it really needs to be said: Howard and Bernier have both been outstanding for us over the past ten games or so. IMO, goaltending's the biggest reason why the team's had a great November. Is this level of goaltending sustainable? Probably not. But this is a good lesson in how valuable solid goaltending can be.

TOO LATE. YOU JINXED IT.

9 hours ago, chaps80 said:

We all know Bob Essensa was the most underrated goalie the Wings had since The Streak began. 

BEfore my time.

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