I took it to mean, Franzen is most comfortable (and performs best) when he's not the #1 Guy.
Hossa is a known, and was a known at that point. He's one of the most consistent players in the league as far as production is concerned (and I'd also say as far as all-around commitment goes). Like I've said, maybe not a lamp-lighting force in the playoffs - but Franzen is? Put another way: "Hossa is a great regular season player but a playoff no-show" - take away Franzen's '08 run, and the statement's a pretty good fit for him as well. The guy plays like a big-bodied Brett Hull, minus the stuff that made Hull an elite asset.
Hossa >>> Franzen. Kenny got the wrong guy. I know, hindsight blah blah blah. But, again, Hossa was a known. Franzen was still very much a question mark. Has he done anything since the signing to really make you say to yourself, "Thank GOD Kenny picked Franzen." You could say, "He scores 25-30 goals for us every season." So then why get on Hossa's case about disappearing in the playoffs and only being valuable in the regular season?
And then there's the contract. That big blessed albatross.
And people overstate Hossa's playoff no show, I'm guessing based on the one season he was in Detroit.
He has 97 points in 137 playoff games. Looking through his playoff performances he's hardly a no-show. And it's not exactly apples to apples to compare that to Franzen's three great playoff years.
Hopefully for the Wings it was the last two playoffs that were a fluke for Mule and not the 3 before it.
As I said before, for years the Wings made up for their lack of size and could beat a strong forecheck by superior skill. But that skill has been declining season after season so their ability to beat it through puck possession and outlet passes has gone away season after season as well. Lids retiring was certainly the biggest hit to that puck possession style.
I am not panicking yet, but I can share some of my concerns about last night's game.
1. It looked like an AHL team vs. an NHL team last night - it was that bad. I don't think I've seen the Wings play a worse 60 minutes of hockey in recent memory. It wasn't like we got unlucky or couldn't cash in on chances - the Wings had no legitimate scoring chances.
2. I didn't see a single useful pass from our D to the forwards. Quincey in particular looked bad.
3. Franzen - who I am usually a big fan of - was non-existent. He looked like he was skating through mud. Same goes for Sammy.
4. Special teams = scary bad. Is Tom Renney running them? I've lost all faith in Renney's abilities after watching the debacle in Edmonton over the last few years. They've got to fix that.
BUT, that was only game 1, and it was against a clearly amped-up St. Louis team. I have no doubt it will get better, I just hope it happens quickly. Also, I liked the way Brunner looked, and I liked Tootoo's speed and energy (I wish he made contact with Tarasenko on that hit attempt). Tootoo, Helm, and Miller would be a fast line.
BTW, thoughts on Howard? I actually didn't think he deserved to get pulled - I assume it was more of a mercy move by Babcock.
I think it was definitely a mercy move by Babs and in no way a reflection of Jimmy's play. He was getting shelled out there.
It would've been nice if he had stopped one of the breakaways but I don't really fault him. All in all he played well considering he got no help.
Z and Dats were held without a shot. Datsyuk was uncharacteristically lazy around his own net a couple times. And Mule had one shot but was mostly invisible except for his fake tough guy act.
It is only one game, but when fans are wondering how this team will look in the post-Lidstrom era, this is a nightmare first glimpse.
OMG, yes, everyone hates the Wings....wahhhh... you mean Pavel slithers and Crosby glides...oh, the humanity...that's clear evidence of the anti Wings agenda! Breaking news...Ken and Mickey say only nice things about the Wings...Alert the media...Olczyk played for the Blackhawks and is paid by them and he is biased towards them???...You're joking...and he said favorable things about the Penguins?...I'm sure the fact he coached them had nothing to do with it...No one ever says one nice things about the Wings, EVER!!! They all hate them...*sob*...Next you're going to tell me Don Cherry favors Canadians...Seriously???
All snotty sarcasm aside, I think people are often too sensitive about some imagined anti-Wings bias.
However, Enzo is an exception. With Olczyk it sounds like they picked a fan from the stands as he goes on about the Wings "subtle interference" and pointing out what should've been penalties called against them. It's one thing to do that when you're the color guy for the Hawks or Pens, but his lack of professionalism on NBC is embarrassing.
And the difference between him and Ken and Mickey is they're doing a local fox sports broadcast. Several of the guys who do the national games have some ties to other teams but manage to set that aside and be relatively objective on NBC. Olczyk is awful.