Monday, May 01, 2006

This is it...

Trusty Blogger wouldn't publish this last night, so here's what I wrote before the games. More to come later:

I remember this situation back in 2002. The Wings were playing the Avs and it was win 2 or go home for Detroit. Win on the road in a hostile environment or all the offseason retooling would go for naught. Win two, and the Stanley Cup was theirs (essentially). The Wings sacked up, Hasek didn't allow a goal for the rest of the series, they got a little luck in the form of the Statue of Liberty, and they advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Here we are tonight, with another elimination game on the road. Another 3-2 deficit, and another win-or-become-a-laughing-stock situation. The difference? We had Dominik Hasek before. Now we have Manny Legace and frankly, I don't have any confidence that he's going to hold Edmonton scoreless for 20 minutes, let alone 120. I was firmly on the guy's bandwagon all along, but I think Mike Rosenberg hit the nail completely on the head today. All throughout the playoffs, Legace has seemed like he'd be more comfortable if he were still the backup goalie. He's not responding to the pressure well (not like the rest of the team outside of Zetterberg is). And the fact is, if the Wings lose tonight, Legace's time in Detroit is done. It's that simple.

It may not be just him though, tonight could spell the end of an era as Steve Yzerman could be playing his last NHL game (Or with him on the sidelines, it's possible that he has played his last game). It's hard to think about, and I hope that Stevie has one of his famous speeches in store for them tonight, because they need a kick in the ass.

I'm not ready to break down my offseason changes for this team until they're dead and buried, because 2 wins, and things could completely change. Quick might not be popular, but a big change would involve #13.

I love the idea of playing Don MacLean tonight even if Yzerman can go. He was effective in his short time up with the Wings (and he did it against Edmonton of all teams). He'll go to the net and do the dirty work, and he's had the scoring touch this year. Sit Samuelsson if you have to, but get him in the lineup.

I'm not worried about the Pistons. The Bucks shot like 62% in Game 3. It won't happen again. Maybe I should be a little more worried based on what's happened with the other top seeds in the league (Spurs 2-2, Suns down 3-1, Nets 2-2, Heat 2-2), but this Bucks team just doesn't scare me. Mo Williams gets the "Scrub off the bench that destroys us for one game" award after going 9-10 in the last game. I thought you had to be white to get that award, but he is very deserving. Now he can go back to scoring 5 points in 22 minutes or whatever it is that Scalabrine, Walton, and Austin Croshere did.

By the way, how happy are the Spurs that Artest got suspended for Game 2? If he plays, San Antonio is down 3-1 right now. I'm not so sure that we won't see SA, NJ or Miami go out in the first round. Miami seems the most likely, but apart from Game 1, the Kings have been better than the Spurs and Artest is giving Ginobili fits. Phoenix is done.

1 comment:

Packer487 said...

It was the kind of loss that I've come to expect out of the Michigan hockey team...just heartbreaking. I finally think it's time to retool. This core has been in tact for a good 10-11 years...might be time for some new blood, and certainly for a new goalie.

I've been emailing theories back and forth the entire day with my friends...I'll have something up about it probably tomorrow.