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Member Since 14 Feb 2009
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#1982485 Let's Talk About the Refereeing

Posted by Buppy on 09 May 2010 - 10:25 PM


4. Refs are fallible, and the rules exist as they're called on the ice and not in some absolute sense. I understand that the Wings lost and that was a factor as far as many here are concerned, but consider the alternatives: review every play, double the number of refs on the ice, make every call reviewable, allow games to be rolled back for missed penalties... I'd love to hear suggestions that aren't going to ankle the game. About the only alternative people who complain about the reffing have is "just hire people who aren't idiots." I'm very sure that the refs in the NHL aren't idiots, and that you aren't going to improve the reffing by getting new people in. It's a hard game to call, especially when everyone on the ice is gaming the system as much as they think they can get away with. The only way to change that would require significantly altering the game, which would be much, much worse. The puck is going to deflect unfavorably off of the linesmen, calls are going to be missed, others called wrong, others made up based on what the ref thinks happened rather than what he saw. It sucks, but the alternatives are worse.

Fallible should not mean 'crap'. Refs should absolutely be held accountable for poor performance. Yes, the game is fast, and players are selling things all the time. But NHL refs should be the top 100 or so in the world at what they do. The refs in the playoffs should be the best of those. 'Suck' is not a standard we should find acceptable. We should demand that the refs do their job better. Demand that they don't make reputation calls, or calls based on what they think must have happened because they couldn't see, or make-up calls because they know they screwed up an earlier one, or calls based on fan reaction. How about not randomly calling hooking when a guy gets tapped on the gloves, but there's obviously no effect on the play. Maybe call cross checking in the crease whenever it happens, and not just when someone falls on a goalie or a team 'deserves' a call.

Rule changes should also be made. Intent to blow = Intent to suck. Distinct kicking motion. Head shots. Diving. How about a rule so you don't call hooking when the 'hookee' pins the 'hooker's' stick with his arm. How about trying to better define interference, and training refs using video examples. Standards for reasonable distance from puck and time elapsed after the puck is gone. Try to get all the refs on the same page, and let the teams know as clear as possible what the standards are. It will always be somewhat subjective, but that doesn't mean we can't improve. I don't believe this is the best we can do.

And why not have some type of review system? Maybe something like the challenge in the NFL. Probably wouldn't be feasible for missed calls, but it would work for bad ones.

#1982457 Let's Talk About the Refereeing

Posted by Buppy on 09 May 2010 - 09:33 PM

The Red Wings were responsible for losing this series. A Stanley Cup-bound team overcomes any obstacle they face and wins the series regardless. In fact, I think even if the officiating was more balanced tonight, the Red Wings still would have lost because the Sharks were simply better. However, calling a spade a spade, the refereeing over the course of this series was very one-sided in favor of the Sharks.

Statements like those made in this thread aren't meant to take away from the Sharks. In order to draw penalties, a team has to keep control of the puck, keep their feet moving, and yes, even sell calls whenever possible. Every team in the league does it. Most any team that wins a 'Cup experiences a little bit of luck en route, and I think the Sharks had a good deal of luck with the officiating, some of the bounces, missed calls, etc. But I will repeat: they were the better team.

Regarding the first bolded portion; it's a tired cliche. Of course, by default, the team that wins the Cup overcomes whatever obstacles they had to face, but that does not mean they could have overcome any obstacle. It just means they were fortunate enough not to face anything they couldn't.

Reverse the calls in game 2. I don't mean make them even, I mean call the game in our favor. Call all the dives on SJ. Miss the penalties on Kronwall and Flip and Cleary. Could the Sharks still have won that game? I doubt it. If Murray and Vlasic (I think) had been given majors and thrown out of the game, could the Sharks have won? Call the Sharks for knocking down Cleary in the crease in OT in game 3 would we have scored? In game one, call Setoguchi for diving, and miss the other call that gave them the 5 on 3. Do the Sharks still win?

Do all that and I think we win 4-1, and the Sharks have a legit complaint about the refs. Wouldn't change anything about how we played or they played. Wouldn't make us any better or them any worse. Things went the Sharks way this series. They weren't better by any significant margin. They weren't more resilient. They just benefitted from the breaks in a pretty evenly played series.

For the second part, something needs to be said for the principle of good sportsmanship. I know diving, embellishing, pleading for calls, etc is prevalent in most sports. But there is something wrong with the mentality that says this is ok. The 'if you're not cheating you're not trying', win at all costs philosophy needs to go. Selling calls and diving should be one of the harshest penalties. Just below blatant recklessness.

Sure, Draper's career would be over. Mule would spend a lot of time in the box until he learned his lesson. But the game would be better for it. The game would be much better if players tried to make plays as hard as they sometimes try to draw calls.

Make diving/embellishing nullify the original penalty (if there was one). Give the PP to the other team. Misconduct to the offending player if there was no original penalty. Keep track of the divers, and suspend repeat offenders. 3 dives by one team in one game; eject the coach, fine the team, and take a goal away from the offending team (or give one to the other team if the offenders don't have any).

#1982310 Franzen Upset Refs Missed Call, Stuart has sprained MCL

Posted by Buppy on 09 May 2010 - 06:39 PM

So based on the points made here, does anyone think Stuart should have been called for the shot to Murray's head shortly after the Franzen no-call. Murray's lip was shredded, guy was bleeding all over himself? For that matter, should Stuart have received something more then a minor for the elbow to Pavelski's head? According to the new rules that is a game misconduct penalty.

How about knocking Thornton's stick out of his hands from behind (forget the player), leading directly to your teams only score?

I would have a lot more respect for the officiating sucks threads if the posts were at least marginally unbiased.

Bottom line is, Sharks won by beating the Wings at their own game, which many of you gloated would never happen.

Yes, Stuart's head shot should have been called. Though I'd suggest that if Murray's had not preceded it, or at least been called, Stuie wouldn't have sought retalliation. I took the refs letting Stuart's go as an admission that they F'd up the Murray hit.

And like I say in pretty much any officiating discussion, there are always missed calls on both sides. Picking out one here and there doesn't make it even. We have seen VS announcers talking about the terrible calls in game 2. We even had Bettman come close to admitting that refs can make mistakes. This series was not called evenly.

I'm not saying that the Wings would have won. Aside from game 4, it was pretty evenly played. The Sharks capitalized better on their opportunities, but they also unfairly had more of them. I'd say the Sharks probably would have won anyway. What really bothers me though is that since we can't ever get any kind of consensus, we have no real hope of improvement.

Losers always cry about the problem, but in a biased way. Winners always say it was fair. Truth is, it's hardly ever perfectly balanced. Even if it was though, who cares? The focus should be that the officiating is terrible. It's been terrible for years, and will continue to be terrible until somebody admits that there is a problem. We should not be talking about the five missed calls on your team, and you responding with the 5 missed on ours. That's too many mistakes, and it has far too much impact on the games.

The league made such a big deal about head hits this year. Murray's hit could have been used as an example to go along with the explicit definition the league came up with. But the refs let it go, and then let Stuie's response go. Being even doesn't make it good. But you don't want to admit there was a problem, because you fear it takes some validity away from your win. The league doesn't want to admit there's a problem, because they fear cries of bias or unfair play. Only the losers talk about it, and we're easily brushed aside as whiners. So it will never get any better (at least not until we get a commissioner with some balls).

I hope it's not the Sharks getting shafted next round. Good luck.

#1982276 Who should we Keep? Release? Sign?

Posted by Buppy on 09 May 2010 - 05:39 PM

IMO detroit can only keep one of Miller/Eaves.. perhaps neither.. IF they are going to be on the team it must be on a 4th line, because they aren't third line players.. Draper has a year left so I take it he will stay on the team as a 4th line, then they have 2 spots for Helm, Miller, Eaves, Abdelakader....they can't keep em all... wings must get a third line that can SCORE and be EFFECTIVE.. not just go out there to try and kill time and dump it and then go change...

Players like that don't come cheap. How do you propose building a scoring, effective 3rd line without sacrificing the potency of the top two lines? We tried 3 deep scoring this year, and that meant Bert, Willy, and Leino.

Helm, Miller, and Eaves all had 10+ goals. Abby could likely do the same. Ritola might be able to. Draper could pitch in a few. With those guys we could expect around 40-50 goals. That is not bad at all for a bottom 6. We also get solid defense, great speed, and 100% effort. They may not have been great in the playoffs, but we got like 3-5 goals from our 3rd and 4th lines, that's nothing to complain about.

Our top 6 was great in the playoffs. Pav and Hank played like superstars. Flip was great against Phoenix, and still solid against SJ. Bert and Mule weren't much against Phoenix, but improved against SJ. Homer played his role very well. Couldn't ask for much more in terms of their playoff performance.

But if you look at the regular season, it's a different story. Obviously the injuries were a big part of it, but I think we need something in the top 6. Another true goal scorer, and probably better speed. And being the Wings, someone who can play puck possession and is defensively responsible. Pav, Hank, and Franzen are the only sure things.

So that leaves 3 top 6 and 1 depth spot to fill. Options include Filppula, Cleary, and Hudler who are already signed and Homer, Maltby, Bert and Willy who are UFA.

Maltby doesn't bring anything even to the bottom 6, so he should be gone unless maybe we have a little space left over for a 14th forward. Willy isn't good enough for the top 6, and not the right fit for the bottom, so he's gone. I don't think any combination of the other 5 gives us a great top 6, and they're too expensive to keep for the third without weakening the top lines.

Cleary has his NTC, so he isn't going anywhere. He could fit in pretty much anywhere. Put him on the third line and he makes the bottom 6 pretty strong IMO. He could also step into a top 6 spot if someone was injured.

Homer and Bert are both in their late 30s, slow, and have had numerous injury problems in recent years. Do we really want both in the top 6? Or would either fit on a 3rd line? IMO, no. I think we can only keep one of them, and I'd much prefer Homer.

Flip and Happy would be ok for the final two spots, but I would rather see one of them traded. Happy is a quality goal scorer, but his speed, defense, and stregth on the boards isn't that great. Flip has the rest, but he's not much of a scorer. One would be fine, but both I think leaves us a bit weak.

The problem is that there are very few really good scorers available as FAs (and we may not be able to afford them), and our tradable assets are pretty limited. So Filppula and Hudler might just be the best we can do. Especially considering that we may have a lot of work to do on the defense, and I don't think Jimmy is quite proven yet (no sophomore slump, please...please!).

#1972656 No Worries

Posted by Buppy on 03 May 2010 - 06:05 PM

The Wings have seen how this series will be called. Take not and adjust. Don't touch anyone who doesn't have the puck. Don't go near the goaltender. Open the game up and find another way to get it done. Datsyuk, Franzen, Z and Filpula are all skilled enough guys that they should be capable of scoring at a fair clip without releying on the guy in front of the net.

Also, for f***'s sake guys, quit comitting stupid penalties. Dicipline! Many of the calls against us were bad, but Datsyuk cannot be cross-checking players in the playoffs, he knows better. Cleary, the game is on the line, wtf is up with that slash? Howard, your stick is to be swung at the puck, not other players - wise up!

Be realistic, San Jose is a good team. One of the best in the league in fact. If the games were called perfectly even, the Wings would still have to play very well to have a chance to win.

You can't just say "there's some adversity now go overcome it and if you don't then you didn't try hard enough or weren't good enough...". You can't win battles in the corners or in front of the net or anywhere else if you don't even fight them for fear of taking a BS penalty. Some adversity can't be overcome.

Last game Flip gave up on a loose puck when a Shark player was maybe a little in front of him. Rafi's stick maybe might have been near to touching a Shark and he dropped it like it had suddenly become poisonous. We made few drives toward the net and had little traffic in front after the bogus interference calls. That is what you're suggesting, and that is exactly what we can't do. That's basically giving up.

What we need to do is just play like we would any other time. Forget last game, nothing can be done about. Be aggressive, drive the net, fight hard, and hope the refs don't get in our way again (or at least call it even).

And a side note on the penalties to Pav and Cleary. Both of those were plays we see 20-30 times every game. But normally, sticks don't break and players don't take headers into the net, so no one notices. Cleary got unlucky, and Pav happened to get called. Can't really complain about either one.

#1968827 Wings Lack Third Period Comebacks

Posted by Buppy on 01 May 2010 - 12:38 PM

In the past three seasons, teams trailing after the 2nd are a combined 22-145. It doesn't really happen all the time. Furthermore, 17 of those 22 wins came in the first round. The other 5 in the second.

Detroit is 0-14 in the last three playoffs. 9 of their 18 total losses came in the third round or finals, where the teams are good enough to make comebacks very rare. Not sure how many of those were tied after 2 (Wings were 4-3 in those games not counting this year) so at the very least 6 of those 14 you really couldn't expect them to come back. 0-8 is not all the remarkable. You would only 'expect' maybe 1 or 2 wins anyway. Couple of the games this year, we weren't playing well to begin with, and I'm sure some of the losses the previous two years were the same. There isn't anything unusual about it.

Level of competition, poor play to begin with, bad luck...the playoffs are such a small sample that I don't think you can draw any conclusions. Over the past three regular seasons, the Wings were 1st, 1st, and 12th in Win % when behind after 2 (1st, 2nd, & tied for 3rd in Point %). Being 12th/3rd this year despite being a pretty poor team for much of the season I think says a lot more than 14 playoff games in the last three years.

#1964404 First Round Grades

Posted by Buppy on 28 April 2010 - 02:23 PM

Lilja - C- (He earns his pay on the PK, and the PK has been way too inconsistent for my likings. Not all his fault, but he needs to step it up in that regard)

Just a note, but Lils wasn't out for any of Phoenix's PP goals.

#1964372 First Round Grades

Posted by Buppy on 28 April 2010 - 01:46 PM

Grades relative to expectations/ability

Datsyuk - A (Almost perfect, would probably be A+ if his linemates had been better)
Homer - C (Not bad, and not less than expected, but nothing special either)
Franzen - C+ (Half his points were because he just happened to touch the puck before Pav, needs to improve)

Zetterberg - A+ (How many plusses can we add?)
Filppula - A (Probably better than we should reasonbly expect, no plus since Hank made him look a lot better)
Bertuzzi - B (Continental drift is faster, but he mostly stayed out of the way at least)

Helm - B+ (Draper 2.0 coming along nicely)
Draper - B- (The OD was really working hard, sucks that people have to get old)
Eaves - C- (Other than the PK, not showing the greatest hustle)

Abby - B- (Came out strong, but barely noticeable after the first game)
Miller - B+ (Great effort, not enough skills, Maltby 2.0?)
Cleary - D+ (Good and bad at times, not seeing/using his linemates well at all, did nothing with time on Pav's line, step it up)

Lidstrom - B- (Aging legs showing, damn you Father Time!)
Rafalski - B- (meh)

Stuart - A (Probably a plus if Kronwall was better, and stop trying to get fancy)
Kronner - C- (Good to see his passes start connecting, now keep it up)

Lilja - B+ (I barely noticed him, which is good for a third pair man, a plus for being that solid after a year off)
Ericsson - B (Huge improvements from early in the year, can still get better)

Howie - B (Some huge saves, some bad goals, could have been a lot worse, needs to work on his handoffs)

#1964343 So how come we can't play like this all the time?

Posted by Buppy on 28 April 2010 - 01:10 PM

Playing like that all the time just wouldn't be fair. The Wings are a charitable group, they like to let people win every once in a while. After all, who wants to watch a team go 82-0 in the regular season then 16-0 in the playoffs...

#1959674 Ilari Filppula's goal in Finnish league

Posted by Buppy on 26 April 2010 - 05:20 PM

Obviously, that only worked because the defender only had the minimum 15 pieces of flair. Ilari had at least 37.

#1955999 Drop Kick

Posted by Buppy on 24 April 2010 - 12:58 AM

Ridiculous! His foot was inside of Howard's leg pad. Thats a little much to me...Holmstrom would be thrown out of a game for that!

He jockeying for position, lifted his foot, lost his balance a little, then got caught up in Howie's ridiculously large pads. Nothing wrong with it. No more interference than Abby's stick in Bryz's face on Miller's goal. Though I do agree that Homer would've been called for it.

#1955987 Automatic Chara suspension recinded

Posted by Buppy on 24 April 2010 - 12:42 AM

Well they obviously can't classify "enforcer" in the rule book. But the criteria on past incidents etc. make it pretty easy to see the type of game someone plays.

For an example, if Datsyuk decides to stick up for himself at the end of the game would this forum still be asking the league to enforce this?

And if you don't like this rule would you like seeing Tootoo or Cooke out at the end of the game taking runs at Lidstrom etc.

I take that to mean that you DO want to see Crosby or Ovie out taking runs at people?

The point of the rule is to stop ANYONE from doing that crap. Shouldn't make any difference if it's Chara or Chuck Norris riding a Rhino.

It's a suspension for instigating, not for fighting. You don't typically see instigators handed out to people 'sticking up for themselves'. (From the league's explanation, it sounds like they're saying Chara shouldn't have gotten one, but I haven't seen the incident, so I can't say.) The refs are certainly capable of giving out instigators when they shouldn't, so i don't absolutely hate the clause, but you have to admit it is starting to look like a superstar get out of jail free card.

#1942946 Red Wings facts

Posted by Buppy on 14 April 2010 - 11:53 PM

The truth is that anything good we do this year is a bonus. One of the problems with consistent greatness is getting worn down by long seasons as well as long, draining playoff runs. Eventually this is bound to catch up with you. This is compounded by the fact that Babcock dosn't roll 4 lines, my only complaint about,in my opinion,the best coach in the game. Our best defensemen are old. After that the depth is lacking. We have a handfull of upper eschelon forwards, mixed with a bunch of patch-work fill ins. Add to this the fact that we have an unproven,untested,albeit talented rookie goalie. The deep seasons (and lack of using 4 lines)have worn down our few great players. Thats why overrated crosby, and a-hole malkin got the cup last year. I won't even get started on the shall we say less than realistic officiating over the years that is controlled by the league(overlord betteman). Since the 80's we have won 1 game that the guy that got shot(o'halleran?) has called. This goes beyond coincidence. By the way, anyone interested in a true history lesson on the NHL should watch the movie Net Worth. It's got Gordie,Ted,Adams,all the historical people the league celebrates. An eye opener to say the least. One last thing: Any team that counts on a guy like Blowtuzzi to be a key piece of the puzzle and not the checking line 4th line role-player that he has become is just fooling themselves or desperate.

What are you talking about? When we've been healthy, we've always gone with 4 lines.

#1939290 Snakes

Posted by Buppy on 12 April 2010 - 11:57 PM

Sometimes ideas or concepts, take something that somebody originally had, and put your own spin on it or try to make it work a bit differently. Happens in business and work all the time. It's better than them doing nothing and it's not worth getting feelings hurt that they might do this.

I might be more receptive if they were playing someone else and still planning something. But you know if they were playing the Kings or Preds, the idea never would have been born.

It's blatant immitation predicated entirely on the fact that we already do it. It borders on mockery.

#1939169 Snakes

Posted by Buppy on 12 April 2010 - 09:30 PM

Why? Just because Detroit is an Original Six franchise with "history" and "tradition" doesn't mean other teams, or new teams, can't have their own deals as well? We have to dump on them for trying to develop their own traditions or ideas? Let them have their fun. If it encourages fan participation and doesn't hurt anybody, let the idea go forward.

It's not 'thier own tradition' or 'thier idea'. It's ours, that they are trying to copy and modify. At least the rat-trick thing had some backing behind it. This is just lame mimicry.

How about they come up with something that doesn't involve throwing some kind of animal on the ice. How about they howl at the moon, or chase a roadrunner, or encroach on to suburban areas and kidnap small dogs from the backyards of elderly ladies. (Ok, that last one is a bad idea, but you get my point.)

(Side note, an elderly lady in my neghborhood did recently lose a small dog, and a coyote has been seen in the area several times. It is really getting out of hand.)