Tough loss but that's the way it goes. We deserved to win, we didn't. We had enough chances to score a couple of goals, but the puck didn't go our way. Blues got a fluke goal and sat back the rest of the way. If it's one thing Hitchcock knows it's how to protect a lead, and he has the defensive pieces to do it.
I thought the key moment that killed our chances of a comeback was when Babcock decided to put Abdelkader out on the 4-on-4. Lots of space on the ice, great for skilled players like Nyquist right? Well no, let's play a guy whose biggest strenght is playing along the boards, something there's a lot less of in 4-on-4 hockey. So he gets the puck, and Kronwall is completely open in a spectacular scoring opportunity. It's a pass even I could put on the tape, but Justin puts it behind Nicky so instead of stepping into the slot and scoring he has to slow down, awkwardly take the pass with his skate and nothing comes of the chance at all. Kronwall is so frustrated by the bad pass he takes a stupid penalty shortly after.
Babcock has to start playing the guys who actually make things happen for us. If we can call up Shehan, we can call up Tatar. Time to sit Daniel Cleary because he doesn't help us win. Time to make Abdelkader a 4th liner like he's supposed to be. Tatar, Nyquist, Zetterberg and Datsyuk are the guys who drive our offense, backed up by Filppula and Franzen (who was looking good today). Right there you have our top 6. LOAD THAT SH*T UP.
I'm not upset about nothing being done by Holland this deadline, but sooner or later some fat is going to have to be trimmed from this team one way or another.
List of expendable players:
List of players NHL ready or soon to be NHL ready:
Sad thing is I don't see anyone but Nyquist, Andersson and MAYYYYYYBE Lashoff being on the team next season.
Jarnkrok should be fast-tracked. Give him a locker-room spot next to Zetterberg. Let him watch Datsyuk in what could be his last season in the NHL. Use him on the wing. Use him on the 3rd or 4th line. Trial. By. Fire. The kid will sink or swim. Sending him to Grand Rapids for a year is almost a step back from the SEL, really at most a lateral move. But that's what's going to happen, right? Sigh.
Semin is a lazier floater than Franzen. I could not possibly be happier that he re-signed with Carolina.
That's a bad reputation that may or may not have had SOME truth to it at times in Washington, but ask any Carolina fan and they will say it's definitely not true this season. Actually he's been praised for his hard work, even defensively. And of course he's putting up points.
It's a lot of money but it could turn out to be worth it. Looks like Semin and Staal have really found eachother.
We didn't have much after the 1st period offensively, and made a ton of defensive mistakes and gave the puck away constantly.
Luckily we have Howard. For all those who say "elite goalies should be able to steal a game for their team, therefore Howard is not elite"... well, I give you exhibit A. Not that it's the first time Howard's done it, far from.
Huge points. We need to keep rolling so Holland feels comfortable making a splash at the deadline.
Don't they say every year it's a deep draft? And even when they don't, I'm sure guys picked late still have become very good players. There are no sure things in the draft unless you're picking top 10. Maybe even top 5 or top 3.
Wings won't be picking that low anyway, so it doesn't make sense to abandon this year for a mid-to-late 1st round pick. Playoffs are a crapshoot and no matter what the pessimists on this board say, if the Wings get in and get hot, they could make a run.