That will probably win, but I like to forget anything that happened in those playoffs.
Cleary was awful in the 2008 playoffs, but the Wings won the Cup. In 2009, he was brilliant and scored a lot, but the Wings lost and he missed that crucial breakaway at the end of game 6 against the Pens.
2007 is a better memory, because the team vindicated itself after choking in the playoffs in 2003, 2004 and 2006. Losing to Anaheim on a deflection sucked, and I still feel we'd have won the Cup if not for that play, but overall, that playoff feels better. Also likely because we won the Cup the following year. 2009 still stings because the Wings haven't won anything since then.
Man, those post lockout years were (almost) magnificent. 2006, favorites for the Cup. Sure, they choked big time, but they were still overwhelming favorites and won a ridiculous amount of games. In '07 they shed the choke reputation and were so close to the finals. '08 was a Cup win, '09 was a Game 7 final that we played with one hand behind our back and still almost won.
2010 had so much promise, and then the injury parade started, and mixed with retirements we haven't been the same since.
"We got seven left-hand D. I love (to have a righty), but how do you get it?" Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said over the weekend at the NHL entry draft in Philadelphia. "It's great to have this fantasy; like (general manager) Kenny Holland would tell you, there's no tree. I've been all over him, but there's no tree to grab them off of, so we'll get what we get."
I don't get why people were calling Brunner a bust. Signs on a contract that's cheap as s*** and produces very, very respectable numbers without any kind of NHL/AHL development beforehand. He doesn't sign with us after because he wanted more money and it didn't work out for him, but the bottom line is we got him for a year on an ELC and he helped our team immensely. Not a waste at all.
Who says they aren't getting a chance? You think Wings scouts travel the entire world scouring for future talent, but don't bother to check around the metro area?
I know it's cool to have a local guy on the team, but you don't go out of your way to sign someone of lesser talent just because they're local. I know it's important for "Michigan boys" to feel like they're specially chosen, but maybe that's the problem. If their only shot is getting picked because they're local, they might not be good enough.
I wish Holland had signed Mike Grier, back when he was a free agent, and like always, the Wings were needing big, physical right handed shooter.