If you’re Modano, where else would you want to be? He’s from Livonia, he has a frickin’ hockey rink named after him in Westland and he’d be joining a team that would be an automatic contender with or without him. The Wings have a history of doing this (i.e. Luc Robitaille and Brett Hull) and it’s worked out pretty well if I recall correctly. There isn’t a better fit for him.
After Z actually scored 1:47 into the second period, I thought it was done. It just felt like the Wings’ night. It felt like Game 7 in Phoenix, when they realized their backs really were against the walls and that they should actually, you know, exert themselves. Less than two minutes later, though, when Todd Bertuzzi took a hooking penalty, I knew it wasn’t going to be so easy. (Side-note: who holds the record for Most Penalties at Inopportune Times? It has to be Bert). From that point on, the Wings were sloppy. They looked tired. They looked bored. They lacked the killer instinct they showed in that Game 7. It just kind of felt like it was a matter of time before things started to turn.
And turn they did. The third period was a clusterf***. This thing would have been over in regulation had Jimmy not made some stellar saves and Joe Pavelski not missed a wide open net. The Wings looked defeated before they even were. It was a complete role reversal. Detroit is supposed to clamp down a game like this. San Jose is supposed be the team that wastes it all away. Instead, when Couture scored to tie the game, the reaction was more of a “well, about time” than “you’ve got to be kidding.” The comeback was in sight from a mile away. As a Red Wings fan, it was a shock to the system. A two-goal third period lead at home in the playoffs is supposed to be a no-brainer. This wasn’t supposed to happen.
The overtime goal is only worth bringing up as a means to discuss Jonathan Ericsson. What was he doing? He was literally behind the net when the Sharks were at the Wings’ blue line. He was s***ty all game, he’s been s***ty all season. I don’t understand how Babcock chooses to sit Lilja over him. Babs has had this infatuation with Ericsson all year and it’s never really made sense. I keep waiting for him to get better, to live up to this hype that’s surrounded him for the last few years. Some guys just never get there. Potential can only be your calling card for so long.