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frankgrimes

New enemies, whom do you fear the most?

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With summer finally getting closer to be finished and training camp about to start, I think it might be an interesting topic to discuss the new/old enemies and why some here (don't) fear them. For me there are two teams I really fear, because they are by far the toughest SOBs in the NHL.

1. Toronto Maple Leafs Maybe their playoffseason was a fluke, maybe not but in terms of grit and toughness this team is going to be a hell to play against. With the edition of Clarkson and Bolland Leafs have gained even more size and Carlyle has a bunch of options to play his matchup games against Detroit. They can role their skilled players, form a checking line or even send the energy line (Orr MacLaren!) out against the Wings. Over the course of a full season, checking everything that moves will leave a big toll on some of the older players and the skill might dimish even further. At least their goaltending and defense aren't that good so that should be a chance for the Wings but if the games are going out of hand, I really fear for our young guns and star players, Orr is going to have some fun for sure...

2. Boston Bruins Skilled, young, tough and elite goaltending. Finding a way to beat this team is not going to be an easy task and I really hope Babcock has some tricks under his sleeve. Detroit can't outskill them like the Hawks did, they can't outtough them either so the best bet would trying to make Chara tired and force him to play against Datsyuk and Zetterberg as often as possible. I know there are teams like the Penguins but as long as they aren't dressing MacIntyre I don't fear them at all, they might beat the Wings with their skill game but Pittsburgh isn't that tough and thanks god the careerkiller known as Cooke has been dealt.

Edited by frankgrimes

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As the Leafs handily proved last season, having goons and racking up the hits doesn't necessarily accomplish anything. And for goodness' sake, enough with the size thing. It has been mentioned repeatedly that Clarkson does not add size, being exactly the NHL average in that category. You seem to have this incorrect image of him as a Milan Lucic clone. Bolland is actually of below average size, so the addition of the two of them has not made the Leafs a bigger team. As for the supposed energy line you've made reference to, it isn't an energy line. The guys you've named as part of it are players who fight and who hit a lot, whose talents pretty much end there, and who, with their lack of defensive acumen, will get shown the proverbial door by any line with a modicum of offensive potency. Just how little Orr and McLaren bring to actual hockey gameplay is reflected in their ice time last season: an average of 6:23 and 5:09 of ice time per game, respectively, good for the bottom two spots on the team in that category.

As for the Bruins, the Wings have certainly had no problems with them in the recent past. More, the Bruins have become weaker with the subtractions of Horton and Ference, both of whom played an important role on that team over the past several seasons. As for Chara, good luck making him tired; he's one of the best-conditioned athletes in the NHL. And playing Datsyuk and Zetterberg against him will not exactly be a strategy, given that Julien will be matching him up against them anyway. Whatever the case, he's a very good defenseman but not a game changer.

I'm not sure why you would fear Steve MacIntyre. He has played all of 13 games over the past two seasons for the precise reason that he is worthless at the NHL level.

Edited by Crymson

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You dont have to be big to play big. The Red Wings will see a different brand of hockey in the East for sure. To face the Bruins and the Leafs once or twice a season is far different from sharing the same division, but it will be exciting. Cant wait for the season to begin!

Edited by RyanBarnes!
F.Michael likes this

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I forget who it was, but a while back someone pointed out the difference between the East and the West was that the west has more "elite" teams that you know will make the playoffs, whereas the East has a lot more "bubble" teams that you never know from one season to the next how they're going to perform.

We know before the season starts that Boston and Pittsburgh are going to be good. What scares me is the number of bubble teams around us. Washington, Philly, Montreal, Ottawa, NJ, Rangers, Islanders, Columbus, Toronto. Trying to put them in any kind of order is a mugs game, because they're all so up and down from one season to the next. And of course us. We were a bubble team last year too.

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It will be interesting to see how things unfold in the east. The Islanders are looking to take that next step. Toronto has something to prove. Pittsburgh has something to prove. Boston is likely to be a contender once again. Columbus is a bubble team. Same with Washington.

I wouldn't be worried about guys like Steve MacIntyre at all. He may not play in an NHL game again. I'd be more concerned about physical players that can play a regular shift and see more than 5 minutes of ice time. We should watch out for guys like Matt Martin, Chris Neil, Wayne Simmonds, etc. Guys like John Scott, Eric Boulton, Matt Kassian, and George Parros likely won't see many games against us.

That said, we're going to have to play more physical. It's just obligatory.

F.Michael likes this

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This whole Big, Bad East thing is incredibly overstated. It's the same stuff people were saying about the Flyers in '97. (Remember how the Legion of Doom was supposed to outright abuse the soft, smallish Wings?)

We had to play the 'hawks, what, like, 77 times this past season? And we won how many of those games?

No one in the East "scares" me like the 'haws. And, for my money, the Ducks are about as Big, Bad, and Nasty as any team you're gonna see in The New NHL - so, no, Boston doesn't really scare me too much. (Though I'm expecting us to drop quite a few contests against them.)

The Caps' PP scares me. I feel like it would eat us alive.

Overall, though? I am so incredibly pumped for our first EC tour.

StormJH1 likes this

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Alright, to be fair, I'm probably being a little too optimistic. It's just, I've lived most of my life here in the "New York metropolitan tri-state area" (PA) so I've had a real good, long look at The Dreaded EC. And, honestly? It doesn't scare me. But, granted, that's if the Wings play like the Wings we know and love (i.e. take what the opposition dishes out, focus on the scoreboard, play our system, stick to The Plan, don't get distracted by any sideshow garbage, hit and finish your checks when you can, etc.) I mean, it's one thing to Play Our Game against an opponent we're intimately familiar with (e.g. the Ducks). But what happens when every other game you're playing puts you up against a team you know very little about? And what happens if all of these new foes decided to really "take it to us" physically? Do we just endure it? How does that set us up for the postseason? (Lest we forget, we're insanely injury-prone.)

It'll be interesting. I know that much.

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Looking at the schedule; why aren't we playing the Maple Leafs more than 3 times, and why so many Western Conference opponents?

Sorry if my question is redundant.

EDIT - and yes - I feel the East will be a bit more physical - however I feel we'll be able to adjust to it (with, or without any legit fighters on the roster).....Cannot wait for the puck to drop!

Edited by F.Michael

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Looking at the schedule; why aren't we playing the Maple Leafs more than 3 times, and why so many Western Conference opponents?

Sorry if my question is redundant.

EDIT - and yes - I feel the East will be a bit more physical - however I feel we'll be able to adjust to it (with, or without any legit fighters on the roster).....Cannot wait for the puck to drop!

We play more physical against teams that play more physically against us

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We play more physical against teams that play more physically against us

Well - we've been able to "step up" when the physical play comes to us...I'm hoping that it won't wear us down over the course of the season.

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Well - we've been able to "step up" when the physical play comes to us...I'm hoping that it won't wear us down over the course of the season.

I guess that's my biggest concern. The wear and tear. The grind of a full regular season with multiple games against the likes of the Bruins and Leafs.

I have to wonder if our puck-possession system - which basically invites physical punishment (if you have the puck, you're not checking. And you're probably being checked) - might become something of a double-edged sword, given that Eastern teams generally play a looser, more wide open, run-'n'-gun game than what we've grown accustomed to in the West. Basically: we should have the puck a whole lot (good. See: controlling the play), but the flip-side of that is...we'll have the puck a whole lot (bad. See: "if you have the puck....")

This is why I don't really see us parting with Tootoo. What if we end up really needing a little ball of hate?

On a positive note: think of all the points we might "get back" by not playing the 'hawks 104 times. And we'll also be seeing the Flames less. And the Sharks.

jimmyemeryhunter likes this

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I guess that's my biggest concern. The wear and tear. The grind of a full regular season with multiple games against the likes of the Bruins and Leafs.

I have to wonder if our puck-possession system - which basically invites physical punishment (if you have the puck, you're not checking. And you're probably being checked) - might become something of a double-edged sword, given that Eastern teams generally play a looser, more wide open, run-'n'-gun game than what we've grown accustomed to in the West. Basically: we should have the puck a whole lot (good. See: controlling the play), but the flip-side of that is...we'll have the puck a whole lot (bad. See: "if you have the puck....")

This is why I don't really see us parting with Tootoo. What if we end up really needing a little ball of hate?

On a positive note: think of all the points we might "get back" by not playing the 'hawks 104 times. And we'll also be seeing the Flames less. And the Sharks.

Agreed.

Babcock may have to make some changes to our style of play from time to time.

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Everyone. As always.

Boston - because d'uh

Ottawa - because they've already said that their only goal this season is to be better than us :lol:

Totonto - beacuse they play a style that gives us fits

Tampa - because Filpulla's going to make us want to choke him by finally reaching his "potential" and playing the way we wished he had in Detroit

Florida - because Weiss - see Alfredsson 2.0

Pittsburgh - becasue of Pierre McGuire and Edzo

Seriously though, I always worry about every team.

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Simple answer: The Wings. When they engage & play their game, there's no team (East or West) that they can't beat. It's when they get lazy, don't show up on time, etc. that things go wrong. So, the Wings are the team I fear the most.

Nev, Smite, 55fan and 2 others like this

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^ my thoughts exactly. and not that I "fear" them, but, boston is going to be one of the teams to beat. wings/b's will be neck and neck til the last week of the season for the division crown.

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I have to wonder if our puck-possession system -

Do we really play a puck-possession style anymore? After losing Rafalski and Lidstrom, just chipping the puck into the neutral zone was more than our D could manage some nights.

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Within the division, I think the Bruins will be the Red Wings biggest threat. The Senators remind me of the Predators. Just a pesky team that competes hard and is a pain to play against.

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First of all, we are the Mighty Detroit Red Wings. We fear no team, other teams fear us. HOWEVER, Our biggest threat to winning the division is hands down the Boston Bruins. They have a good mix of fowards, fairly solid overall defense, and a shutdown goaltender. Being in the finals last year, and winning the Cup a few years back was definitely no fluke. That being said, I still believe we have a great chance of winning the division. Especially with the additions of Alfredsson and Weiss. Should be an exciting year in Motown!!!

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I fear Grand Rapids the most....they take our talent and leave us with Sammy and Bert pretending to be roster players.

Well the point of this thread was to discuss new enemies and why people fear them. The Grand Rapids are the Wings farmteam.

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Boston and Pittsburgh.

I see Ottawa as an up and coming team, though.

Edited by GMRwings1983

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Boston and Pittsburgh.

I see Ottawa as an up and coming team, though.

ya, up, and coming to play golf in July

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ya, up, and coming to play golf in July

Isn't everyone playing golf in July?

They went to the 2nd round last year and have a good mixture of skill and grit.

Something we don't have. A mixture of skill and grit.

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