Apologies for the condensed GDT, it's late, i'm strapped for time and I have a busy day tomorrow.
From my understanding, 3 points in our remaining 4 games is what we need to secure a playoff spot, there is no reason why we shouldn't secure two points in this game with Buffalo in their current state.
Red Wings unleash the force, Glendening and Nyquist with a pair each, Datsyuk with a goal and a helper. Wings win 5-1.
My biggest issue is that this is the automatic way it's done. The roster is always full of veterans so there's little room for any of the prospects to even get a chance until someone gets hurt or until they've run out of waiver options. I'm sure it's because Babcock and Holland don't generally trust rookies/young players until they prove their worthiness, but maybe that's changed this year. I think it has with Babcock, and I hope it has with Holland. Not completely, I don't think they should abandon the process and rush Mantha, Pulkkinen, Athanasiou, Mrazek, and some of the young defensemen all up here next year, but start leaving room for some of them to get a decent taste of NHL action and go from there.
Well, it's not the automatic way it's done. More often than not the really good players do earn roster spots before they run out of waiver exemptions. Usually because they're good enough to earn an injury call-up prior to that, and perform well when they do. Occasionally it's just because we have an opening.
Fischer, Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Franzen, Filppula, Helm, Smith, Brunner, Dekeyser... all of them did it. Possibly Hudler and Kronwall as well. Maybe even Abby (I think 07-08 counted as his first year, but maybe not).
Tatar and Nyquist are more exception than rule. The guys that normally get left down until they're out of options are the guys like Kindl, Emmerton, Andersson, Kopecky, Ritola, Mursak...
Free agency is a narrow window, and once you let that opportunity go you can't go back. Sign a proven player and leave a kid you think is ready in the minors: It doesn't work out, or you have injuries, you have the option of using that kid. Pick the kid instead of a proven player what happens if it doesn't work? Fall back on another kid you didn't think was as good as the first one?
And now we're getting to a point where kids are competing against other kids. Emmerton lost his spot to Andersson. Andy may be headed the same way, or if not then there's less opportunity for Glendening, Ferraro, and Callahan. Could be hard to find spots in the lineup for all of Tatar, Nyquist, Jurco, and Pulkkinen, even if we leave one or both of Jurco and Pulu in GR next year and that's not even considering Mantha possibly jumping one (or both) of them.
In short, nothing about how we handle young players needs to change. Mostly because we already handle them the way you're all suggesting anyway. The way we handled Nyquist this year should have been different, which is to say it should have been the way we handled other good kids in the past. But that's in the past, it worked out pretty well regardless, and there's no good reason to think it's a pattern or particularly likely to happen again.
Have to love this time of year. Checking scores every few minutes, logging in for the updated standings, doing the math to see how many possible points other teas have left vs us.... it is GREAT! Not as great as running away with things, but still a ton of fun. BTW if I have done the math correctly-we need 2 more wins and 1 NJ loss to clinch! Then we win the tie breakers on ROW.
Tough game tonight, i'm glad we racked up as many points as we have these past few games so this one isn't as desperate. It will be a challenge but I think our boys can overcome the odds.
Lines are a complete guess, I am not going to be able to re-update it before tomorrow night's game so I took a crack at what I think the starting lines might look like going by what was rolled in the game against Buffalo. Someone will post more accurate ones as game time closes in i'm sure.
Monster is confirmed to play, Price is not but highly likely to get the start.
Get this win guys and make the path to the playoffs that much easier for our remaining games.