Friday, April 9, 2010

BJ's Get the Shaft in Regular Season Finale, Red Wings Take SO Win.

It took the full 65 minutes of real hockey, and four rounds of the shootout, but Big Todd Bertuzzi finally told the Columbus Bluejackets to take a seat and ended their season with a game-winning Shootout goal to end a scoreless tie and bring the Red Wings up to 100 points, a benchmark they have now held for a remarkable 10 consecutive seasons.

Normally, I would be more loathe to give the Wings praise for having to go the distance with a team as low in the standings as Columbus, but I give credit where it is due: the Bluejackets ran us hard the whole game, and Steve Mason made life miserable for our boys tonight. Luckily our Calder candidate Jimmy Howard was equally up to the task of shutting the door on BJ scoring chances, and thankfully Columbus's PP was as anemic as our own.

Now that the festivities are dying down a bit on Twitter, let's go over The Geek's Winning Formula:

1.) Apply Pressure to Wound - Although it didn't produce goals, it produced results. I definitely felt the Red Wings pressured much better tonight than in recent games. Guys were pressing hard, not letting up on Bluejacket players on the boards and hindered cycling. It was wonderful. The pressure Detroit used in the offensive zone was obvious as well, as the Wings outshot the BJ's 45-22, a differential that is much more Wing-like in my mind. The only reason a shootout was needed has got to be Steve Mason. He showed tonight why he was the Calder winner last year, but was shown one shot too many in the end.

2.) Keep the Energy Up! - Very good showing in this regard tonight, a lot of guys moving their feet and skating hard to the puck. The hitting was by no means prevalent, but considering it's the Red Wings, that's how we like it. Detroit played just physical enough to back the Bluejackets off, and that allowed us to play our game. The boys were a little sleepy in the face-off circle, going 21 for 36, but to their credit, it was not a factor for the Wings.

3.) No 3rd Period Heroics, Please - What'd I tell ya? Play a good game, and you're likely not going to be staring down the barrel of a loss. They may not have scored in regulation, but Detroit never trailed in the game, did they? This is the important part: It takes one moment going your way to break a tie, but you have to work to come back from a deficit. If the Wings can keep this intensity and prevent themselves from fighting a losing battle, we'll have little to worry about come post-season.

Overall, it was a fun game to watch, very entertaining on both sides of the ice, and VERY entertaining following all the Tweeps on Twitter. Wow, do I feel dirty after this game!! Was a ton of fun though. If you guys are reading, you're good people and I'm glad to have shared a few (dozen) laughs with you tonight. May we share lots more through the Playoffs!!

Well, my powers of premonition apparently need some work, as Big Bert ended up being the hero of the night. So to start, I'm 0 for 1. Need to sharpen my skills for the game on Sunday against the Blackhawks, I guess...

Till then, Wingnuts!! Let's Go Red Wings!!!


Michael Smith said...

Great game to watch. Steve Mason was amazing. He definitely gave his team a chance to win.

The Wings won, no one got hurt, and we got by the Predators in the Standings, so it was a +++ game. The low (no) scoring kept the team engaged all 60 minutes. Lots of positive outcomes for such a low scoring game.