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gcom007Member Since 18 Dec 2003
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Posted by gcom007 on 12 May 2010 - 12:43 PM
It's really up to him to make the most of the opportunity. He's got the skills, and he's going to get a shot. If he can pony up, he'll have a very, very good offensive season.
Posted by gcom007 on 11 May 2010 - 01:41 PM
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Posted by gcom007 on 08 May 2010 - 09:39 PM
You are going to say that with the Sharks having far more scoring chances? You watching a different game than I am?
I suppose being a scoreless game is what I should be thankful for.
I'm not saying that the Sharks haven't been far better, but they haven't looked as strong as they did to start out the first 3 games. The intensity isn't quite there for either team yet. That said, I too am thankful for the scoreless game because we could be down, and I say get your game together and take control of the situation. The only reason the Sharks are dominating thus far is because we're not bringing it yet. Score's still even, so it's anyone's game. First goal is going to be big. Thankfully Howard's looked strong so far. If this was 1-3, we'd probably be down 2-0 by now.
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Posted by gcom007 on 05 May 2010 - 06:16 PM
it has been discussed already here ad nauseaum. Ogood was projected starting goalie but he did absolutely everything to loose his job. Later team had no chance than ride on Howard because team deperstely needed points. there was no room for errors anymore.
in short : without Howard = no playoffs.
See, the thing is, I never bought any of it, and I'm certainly not the only one. Plenty predicted rather accurately how this was likely to go down. And I've said the same thing all along that people are just realizing and saying now. The problem is that so many people have selective memories and easily ignore facts in the present.
While Jimmy Howard was playing great, Osgood was going weeks to months between starts. Then, according to the masses he's "blowing his chances." Really? One game out of nowhere once in a blue moon is "blowing every chance?" I never bought it then, and I sure as hell don't buy it now.
And look all over the map over the last couple weeks and you'll read and hear a lot of comments like these:
"Looking back on it, Osgood was never given a fair chance to get going."
"It was stupid to let Osgood sit for so long."
"Osgood wasn't playing as bad as the year before when he was able to turn it on in the playoffs."
"Why on earth didn't Babcock go with the veteran who was the best goalie of the last two post-seasons?"
Listen to the radio; hosts are dropping these lines and fans calling in are dropping them. Read the papers and you'll see writers saying it there too. And even here on lgw.com we've got people backpedaling over the matter.
If you go back, you'd find that more than a few of us were saying this stuff all along. And I'm not saying that it's rocket science; it just makes all the sense in the world if you cut the "hype" bulls***. Hype rarely ever plays out to be worth all the commotion it causes.
And I ask you, in all honesty, what's it worth to ride a rookie goalie to the playoffs only to watch him crumble under the pressure as if it wasn't inevitable especially in this town coming off of two outstanding playoff runs? Not much if you ask me. Some people are calling this "experience" for Jimmy Howard.
Well here's something else that people just might be backpedaling on six months: this "experience" might have a profoundly negative effect on Howard. We've seen goalies get burnt out early more often than not in the NHL, and there's no reason Jimmy Howard is going to magically be exempt to the effect. That's certainly not to say that I think he's screwed because of this, but I'm certainly not ignoring the potential given all the factors involved and the history of countless other goalies to suffer the same fate before him.
All the risks involved weren't worth it to me six months ago, and those risks look all the more like mistakes now that the regular season fog has cleared.
Babcock NEVER gave Osgood anything close to a fair, reasonable chance to get his game going. Someone at his level should be smart enough to know that no matter how well a rookie plays in the regular season, chances are he's going to struggle in the post-season; better to go with the guy who's got the experience if you want to give yourself the best chance to win.
And isn't that the point? People seem content to have just made it into the playoffs, and while I don't want to minimize the accomplishment or act like a spoiled brat, but I want to win every year, and I don't think any guy in that locker room will tell you otherwise. If you want to win every year, you need to give yourself the best chance; you need to go with what you know works. Chris Osgood obviously has worked in the past.
So what do you do? Simple. Everything you can to give Osgood a chance to get going. He's a champion. If you don't believe he wouldn't have found a way to get his game going with a true to life playoff race on, you must not have been watching this guy the last couple of years in April, May and June. Osgood lives for the playoffs, and he would've risen to the occasion if given a few consistent starts or at least a steady, predictable rotation. I have absolutely no doubt about that, just as I had no doubt that he could come in on the 2008 run and carry this team to a Cup, and just how I had no doubt that he could be that guy again even after an abysmal regular season last year.
I had and have no doubt in Chris Osgood because the guy has proven throughout his long career that he has what it takes to be a champion, and when you've got a guy like that in the room, you do everything you can get him going.
But Babcock chose to let the champion sit and rot on the bench while setting up a rookie goalie to fail, so again, in my mind, this one's entirely on Mike Babcock.
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Posted by gcom007 on 05 May 2010 - 02:31 PM
"Babcock also shot down any idea he might put in Chris Osgood in place of goalie Jimmy Howard.
“I’ve made lots of goalie changes over the years when I’ve been coaching,” Babcock said. “I always do it for a reason. I don’t believe there’s any reason.”"
I don't expect to come out of this with Howard or anybody, but I sure as hell hope Babcock gives Osgood a fair shot next year down the stretch. While I'm not happy at all with Howard's playoff performance this year, I still blame Babcock for putting too much on a rookie, just as I've been saying since November. There's no sense sugarcoating how poorly he's played the majority of the time in the playoffs, but there's also no sense holding it against him at this point. He's got a lot of potential, but probably 99% of the time, a goalie needs a few years in the NHL before they're really ready to carry a team through the playoffs.
Next year, let Osgood do what he does in the playoffs and let Howard watch. Then the next season, I'd be a lot more likely to put money on Howard answering the call when the playoffs role around.
Posted by gcom007 on 04 May 2010 - 10:46 PM
Babcock gets most things right, but I've been saying it since his first year here, he makes bonehead decisions when it comes to the goalies...
Posted by gcom007 on 04 May 2010 - 09:56 PM
However, that soft goal at the end of the 1st and the soft goal in the 3rd are unacceptable. I feel infinitely more justified in suggesting that Babcock screwed up with the goaltending. It's just stupid to put so much on a rookie when you've got a guy like Osgood there. He never was given a fair shot, and that's a shame.
As I've said since November, it's stupid to put so much on Howard. It's not fair to him. He was set up to fail or be Patrick Roy, and the latter was unlikely to happen.
He hasn't been good enough in the playoffs and he lost this game for us. I don't blame him though. I blame Babcock. He's been making poor coaching decisions since November, and now we're suffering through the result of those poor decisions, and most unfortunately, so is Howard.
Posted by gcom007 on 04 May 2010 - 02:08 PM
I highly doubt anybody is taking away from Osgood's recent past performances, so not much need to divulge into numbers there saying one goalie is better than the other.
Presently though, it is Howard's job and he has not been the problem/main problem on this team in losses (sans Phoenix game 4 perhaps) and we're basically smacking the few upside the head who think Osgood should be starting next game. Not because of Osgood, of course he is capable, but because Howard really hasn't done much to justify yanking him to the bench.
There have definitely been people dropping the cliche of Osgood getting by on stacked teams. It's typical BS Osgood analysis around here. When Osgood plays well, it's because of stacked teams. When anyone else struggles, it's the team's fault. Meanwhile, in the regular season, when the team plays poorly, it's because they're not confident in Osgood to make the save. Then someone else comes in and plays well (and perhaps the team gets a wake up call and picks up their game too...) and suddenly the teams playing better because the goalie's giving them confidence.
And that does bring me to a point about Howard again. If we're going to go with the idea that strong play from a goalie makes a team play better with more confidence, and then that weak play makes a team play worse with less confidence, you've got to question how Howard's play in the post-season is influencing this team. And while I'd agree that he certainly hasn't been the only problem, he's most certainly not been a strength for us the majority of the time thus far.
He's struggled to hold leads and oftentimes given up the leads early. On multiple occasions he's surrendered the lead/let the other team tie it up merely moments after we tied it up/took the lead. And that boils down to the one thing I very much agree with Eva on: Howard's timing for giving up goals has been terrible, and far too often these goals are either stoppable or blatantly soft.
Here is a stat that to me is fairly stunning: Howard's given up goals in pairs (or more...) just a few moments or less apart, in 6 out of 9 games.
While the circumstances are obviously different given how much Osgood's played this year, if this were 2008 and Howard started and played as he has this year, he absolutely would have been pulled by now. The biggest reason we pulled Hasek is because he kept giving up goals in pairs, surrendering leads, and generally not stopping the puck at the worst times. Howard's absolutely had the same issue, and for as well as he's played at times (and bear in mind, I gave him a ton of credit for his Game 2 recovery and don't hold those 3rd and 4th goals against him), he's also played downright poorly at others.
As I've said all along and all season, I like Jim Howard a lot and I'm very happy for all he's done this year and I think he's got a lot of potential if he keeps his head straight and continues to improve on his fundamentals. But at the end of the day, I'm not going to sugarcoat anything about the post-season: he hasn't been good enough, not even close. If Osgood were in game shape, I think Howard would have and probably should have been out in the first round. Far too often he has not played well enough to allow this team to get any kind of momentum or swagger going. When you're constantly giving up goals in pairs, giving up leads early, giving up leads or ties through the game, you don't give your team any chance to get going.
Again, I'm not saying it's all his fault by any means, but you've got to sugarcoat it and some to say that he hasn't been a glaring weakness in the post-season far too often. And to suggest that he isn't helping the team play better is no stretch either. And while I get that it's real hard to put Osgood in at this point for other reasons, and while I get that Howard's finished games better than he started at times, it doesn't change the fact that we've lost more games than we've won and Howard's most certainly one of the reasons that is the case.
So while it's not so cut and dry for me, I certainly understand why many are ready to yank Howard and see if Osgood can get it done again. This isn't just slappy's on the forum. It's the radio hosts, it's the journalists, and it's not a brand new suggestion after game 4. While I get that Howard is a rookie and I'm not going to hold this against him in the future, I don't think anyone is being honest if they suggest that Howard hasn't been incredibly disappointing in the post-season so far. The whole reason we went with Howard over a 3-time Cup winner down the stretch is because he played so great, at times looking utterly dominant while putting on a one man show. He absolutely has not played anywhere close to that level in the post-season.
How can you really expect people to be happy about that?
Posted by gcom007 on 04 May 2010 - 12:47 AM
And as far as last year goes, I think many of you are just totally forgetting things. Osgood was nothing short of outstanding, probably better even than he was the year before. The team had countless injuries throughout the playoffs to major stars. Lidstrom actually missed games! Hell, and game 4 against Columbus dragged his stellar stats down as he let in 5 goals while sick or dehydrated...I can't remember what it was, but he was FAR from 100% after only surrendering 2 goals in 3 games prior to that. And if you break it down over the course of the playoffs, Osgood was facing a lot of shots. On average he'd be just a few below Howard right now and Osgood isn't one to give up the rebound shots like Howard.
If last June people had tried to say anything negative about Osgood's playoff performance, or tried to minimize it in any way, there would be a tidal wave of people declaring you wholly and completely insane. If we had won the Cup, Osgood was getting the Conn Smythe, absolutely no doubt about it. He was the difference in the playoffs for a team battered by injuries to its stars. Against the Blackhawks, a far, far, far stronger team offensively than Phoenix, without Nicklas Lidstrom for the final two games of the series, Osgood held the Hawks to 1 goal each game.
And how well did Datsyuk play for us last year? How about in the first four games of the Finals? Oh wait, he didn't even play. How about Hossa? How about Holmstrom?
How else can I put this? I think it's absolute lunacy to suggest that Osgood was anything short of brilliant during the last two post-seasons. And any way you shake it, when push comes to shove, Howard hasn't answered the call too much of the time this year. We're not even to game 3 of the second round yet and he's already given up almost as many goals as Osgood gave up in the entire Cup run in 2008! And in the first round we played one of the worst offensive teams in the league! It's worth defending Howard's play last night in particular, but far too often he's failed to raise his game, and he's created as much chaos for himself at times as anyone on this team.
There's no way in hell you can't look at the goaltending as a problem when you're giving up 4 or more goals in 5 out of 9 of your starts thus far. It doesn't mean that goaltending has been the only problem, it doesn't mean we should put Osgood in, nor does it mean that Howard's been utterly terrible. But he's been nowhere near good enough. Not even close. You can't give up so many goals early, many of them stoppable if not blatantly soft, and expect the team to rally around him and play their best hockey. Osgood was a rock the last two post-seasons; he was as steady as they come. There's no way in hell you can look at Howard's post-season so far and say the same. Howard hasn't given this team a chance to relax and get their game together far too often. That's just not going to cut it, no matter how well he plays the rest of the game.
And then there's last year...
Babcock on Osgood last year after the playoffs: "Despite the loss, Red Wings coach Mike Babcock couldn't contain his praise for the veteran goalie. "I think just in the playoffs in general he was excellent for us," Babcock said. "(He) gave us a chance. You know, along the way in the playoffs this year (was) much different than last year. We never were always firing on all cylinders. We always had people missing. And Ozzie was one of our strengths, to say the least, all playoff long. I think he deserves a lot of credit. His numbers speaks for himself, he's done a great job." ( http://redwings.nhl....s.htm?id=466559 )
And as Babcock says, the numbers tell quite a story here...
2007-2008 Playoff Stats
2008-2009 Playoff Stats
GP: 23 Record: 15-8
2009-2010 Playoff Stats
Posted by gcom007 on 03 May 2010 - 10:54 AM
Jimmy was standing on his head when the score was 3-2, so saying he has never made the big timely
The glove save on Malhotra, Thornton, the saves on the door step through the mad scrambles, if I remember correctly all happened while the Wings had the lead or were tied.
I find it hilarious all of the glaring mistakes made in this game by Wings skaters and the way to fix it on here starts with the netminders.
That was my point though in saying that last night was his most important game. In the other games where he gave up the second goal, the 3rd and 4th goal tended to follow shortly thereafter as opposed to last night when he battled back and started making the big saves. I'm not disregarding his play throughout the game and while he eventually let in a 3rd and 4th goals, it was due to circumstances more outside of his control than in previous games. He was strong and resilient after the 2nd goal in this game. We were in this game last night until we lost our composure in the 3rd and took a ton of stupid penalties. You can't blame Howard for that.
That said, again, he needs to be stronger in the first in games 3 and 4 if we're going to have a prayer, along with the rest of the team. He hasn't had all the help in the world, but he hasn't helped steady the ship early on, and that's important in the post-season more than ever. A big save when you're up 1-0 is as important as a goal that sends it to 2-0. We need that out of Howard tomorrow.
I don't agree with much of Eva's analysis and I don't think Osgood should go in, but one thing he touched on that has been true in 6 of his 9 playoff starts is that he hasn't made timely saves to help us attain and maintain a lead. I do believe that's more important than some acknowledge. And to be fair and objective, one benefit Osgood could bring to the game even if a bit rusty is his ability to slow things down. He's much better about absorbing the puck and controlling the pace than Howard at this point. All season long, we've seen a more furious pace to the onslaught in front of Howard, but much of that has to do with Howard's struggles with rebound and puck control in general. Whereas many goalies smother the puck up on the first shot, Howard often gives up multiple rebounds, forcing him to make 2-3 saves and creating scrambles in our end.
(Note: the following isn't an argument to put Osgood in, so much as discussion on why I thought Osgood should've been given more of a chance to be the guy heading into the playoffs)
I think Howard certainly can improve on his weak points in time, but the youthful issues play into why I didn't like the idea of him starting in the playoffs as a rookie. Many have said for awhile that his technical shortcomings as a goaltender would be more evident in the playoffs as the intensity picks up and guys zero in on a goalies weaknesses and tendencies. Despite some strong moments at times, more often than not, this has been true. Again, I don't hold it against Howard as he is a rookie; it's just why I thought Osgood should've been given more chances to get going so he could lead the way again in the post-season. I simply saw no harm in giving Howard more time to learn what it takes to play at the NHL level; it's no knock on Howard as a goalie as he's just a rookie.
Ultimately, 99% of the time I believe that the benefits of a veteran netminder in the playoffs outweigh the benefits of going with the younger regular season hotshot. Veterans know what it takes to win in the playoffs and how to help control the pace of those game. They oftentimes learn by watching and experiencing day to day how other veterans do it first.
A lot of people thought it was stupid to go with Vernon over Osgood in '97 as Osgood was the younger hotshot at that time, and while he had his fair share of doubters too (which I still believe are solely the result of game 7 against San Jose in his rookie year, enough said...), many questioned the move. I think Vernon's regular season stats were a bit rough (he had a sub-.900 save percentage if memory serves me correctly...), definitely not as strong as Osgood's who played more as well. But Vernon was the veteran who had already won a Cup, and he went on to win the Cup for us again and the Conn Smythe as well.
I have little doubt that watching Vernon win that Cup in 1997 was the biggest difference maker in Osgood's career. He was a strong goalie technically, already an All Star and Vezina runner-up before he was 25, but regular season stats and records oftentimes have little to do with postseason stats and records, let alone the sound mental approach needed to go the distance in the playoffs. As he's said again and again, he learned all that watching Vernon.
So for me, I think Osgood should have started in the playoffs, no matter how the regular season went down. However, that doesn't mean I think he should go in at this point. I mean this as no knock to Jimmy Howard as a goalie, and I'm not just backtracking because he hasn't been great in the playoffs. I've said it all along for the same reasons I'm reiterating now. And while I don't hold anything against Howard, the experience of watching him thus far in the post-season is certainly affirming of my previous thoughts on going with the veteran in the post-season. Worst case scenario you have to go to Howard if Osgood screws up. Much better to let the veteran battle with the emotions of getting pulled than a rookie who doesn't show up, and if a rookie can't get it done after Osgood, it's not going to be nearly as (potentially) scarring to him as being the starter from game 1 has potential to be.
Once in a blue moon there's a Patrick Roy who can do it all as a rookie, but it's RARE as can be. From all I've seen through the years, you're far more likely to burn a guy out by putting too much pressure on him early on. I think Howard's got a lot of skill and potential, but to say I'm not concerned for how this could end up affecting his career would be a lie. Again, far too many goalies come on strong only to burn out fast. I suppose there's nothing to be done about it now, I'm just saying...he's a good kid, and I've loved seeing him prove so many wrong this year. Unfortunately, I know all too well how quickly people will turn against you as well...
Posted by gcom007 on 03 May 2010 - 09:22 AM
This is silly, any way it goes. s***ty refs or not, both those games were winnable and the Wings did everything in their power to lose while giving the refs every opportunity possible to make s*** calls.
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Posted by gcom007 on 03 May 2010 - 09:18 AM
We didn't last night's game because of Jimmy Howard, though at the same time, we haven't won a game in this series yet either, and Jimmy Howard has a hand in that too. There haven't been incredibly soft goals, but there has been a lack of big saves before we're already in a hole. If we're going to have a prayer, he needs to be far stronger in the first period in games 3 and 4. He has failed to make the big saves early on and when you go down early, or you don't maintain early leads, you're not set up too well for the rest of the game.
Just like the rest of the team, Jimmy Howard needs to put in a full 60 minutes in games 3 and 4 or this series is over.
Posted by gcom007 on 03 May 2010 - 09:08 AM
I throw out the "bandwagon fan" to those who bail on the team for no reason other than they are facing adversity. There are a lot of people here saying "season is over" and other crap like that. A true fan doesn't give up on their team.
If you can't grasp that concept, then I don't know what to say.
Prime example of a bandwagon fan
Easy to throw the towel in. They will be rooting for the Sharks next week.
This is nonsense.
There is a fairly literal definition of the term "bandwagon." You would do well to read up on the concept of "bandwagon effect" so as to understand why you should stop using the term in a manner that makes no sense.
Based on your working definition, your grievance with "bandwagon fans" revolves around an issue of faith more so than an actual case of "bandwagon effect" in action. There is a difference between one who is pessimistic and one who is optimistic for certain, but in this case, such states do not necessarily minimize how much of a fan one may be. It has more to do with how specific people's personalities deal with any given situation. Thinking or imagining the worst absolutely does not automatically insinuate that you do not care endlessly about something.
You would do well to stop deriding people who care enough about the Red Wings to seek out a message board, make an account, and then post on a forum, perhaps thousands of times. They may not be the same type of fan you are, but they are most certainly fans. You may not process things the same way or agree with them, but it is naive to make sweeping comments to suggest that there are many people here that do not care endlessly about this team. It is entirely unnecessary and presumptuous.
Posted by gcom007 on 02 May 2010 - 11:57 PM
Howard is the reason that this game was not a blowout.
Osgood, playing behind a totally stacked team as he was the last two seasons, never had to deal with the sort of barrages Howard has been weathering so far in these playoffs.
While this is irrelevant to the topic, your assessment of Osgood's challenges the last few years, especially last year, is way off. That stacked team last year had countless injuries and were a defensive nightmare. How on earth do people so easily forget that Osgood was essentially a shoo-in for the Conn Smythe last year for this reason alone? We had every reason to go down early if not for the excellent play of Osgood. And remember in 2008 against the Pens? 2 shut outs to open the series and take a 2-0 lead against Bettman's fake-son's team!? Give me a break. Osgood was nothing short of outstanding any way you shake it the last two years.
That said, and I'm not saying Howard has been horrible, he hasn't played very well either. He's had really solid moments, but far too many piss-poor moments as well and he has lacked the ability to make key saves at the right time now in 6 of 9 playoff games. He's not losing the games for us in a Legace-esque fashion, but he's certainly not doing much to help matters either. He's got to do more to keep us in the game in the first or it doesn't matter how well he plays in the 2nd or 3rd. Phoenix was a terrible offensive team and now we're facing a team that's actually got some firepower. He's got to be stronger early on in these games, whether the defense is helping or not.
It's everyone's fault we're not playing well more often than not in this post-season, and Jimmy Howard absolutely deserves to shoulder as much of the blame for that as the rest of the team. It's a tough lesson to learn, but he's a rookie, and hopefully he is learning that it takes a lot more of "something" to do in the playoffs what seems fairly natural in the regular season. While I'm not letting him off the hook for this post-season, I'm not about to hold it against him either. Again, ROOKIE!!!