Posted on: June 3, 2008 1:46 pm
Sitting in Hockeytown last night, I could not help but marvel at how amazing that hockey game was. It was such a wonderful game to watch, the highs and lows, watching a team that was playing near the top of their game battle a goalie that could seemingly do no wrong. The Penguins roared out of the gate to an early 2-0 lead, and the crowd groaned their displeasure. They could feel the game slipping away. As the second period started, we waited on the edge of our seats, begging, praying for a reason to cheer. Darren Helm answered the desperate city's prayers, punching a goal past Fleury. The third period rolled around, everyone wished again, holding out against hope that this team could bring home the Cup that night. Pavel Datsyuk shot one past Fleury, the crowed erupted....and then promptly were shot down with the realization that the puck had only hit the crossbar. Then, the red light was lit behind the goal, again by Datsyuk. This one counted, the game was now tied. Hockeytown was in a frenzy, strangers were hugging, people were screaming and jumping around. Three minutes later, the puck found the back of the net. Pandemonium ensued, suddenly the lead was theirs!! Red and white clad fans were running around, the mighty Winged Wheelers had united this crowd behind them, nothing could stop them. The minutes ticked away, and the anticipation grew, and grew and grew. With a minute left no one was left sitting. Suddenly, with 35 seconds left, their hopes were dashed, as the Penguins found the back of the net. A desperate goal by a team that had nothing to lose, the crowd was deflated, but, at the same time, refused to leave, knowing this game was far from over. The first overtime went through with plenty of close calls on both sides, the city groaned and cheered, their anticipation killing them. The second overtime started, a few fans left, the die hards held on, their own voices making up for those who had left. The play ebbed and flowed, the crowd sat on the edge of their seats, both teams tired, started making mistakes, but neither could capitalize, Fleury held on strong, his pads suddenly impenetrable. The second overtime ended, more fans left, we refused to leave. The third overtime started, suddenly, the Penguins had more life in them, and then the whistles rang out, and the fans knew something was wrong; A four minute penalty, our hearts sank. Could the Wings find a way to end this seemingly unbeatable penalty? The red light behind Chris Osgood was suddenly alight with a flame that burned the hopes of the city down. The Penguins had managed to defeat the Wings. But what a game it was. Those of us who watched the whole thing should treasure the experience of being able to see that, no matter what happened, one team had to lose, and the Red Wings, unfortunately couldn't capitalize on some golden opportunities. Now its upsetting that the wrong team won, but the Wings are still ahead 3-2 in the series, and Fleury will have to play 2 more perfect games to beat them, and I do not think that he can do it. I said Wings in 5 to start the series, but, I think that the game tomorrow night will be the night that Niklas Lidstrom and the rest of his Winged Wheelers lift the Cup aloft, celebrating their 11th Championship.
Posted on: May 5, 2008 3:49 pm
- And then there were 4: Pittsburgh and Dallas advance in overtime thrillers, and, while Pitt was no surprise, the Stars managed to race out to a 3-0 lead, and then allowed the Sharks to creep and creep back into the series. However, Marty Turco has looked nothing short of amazing on getting his way to the Western Conference Finals. What interests me the most about these Western Conference Finals is that Marty Turco generally struggles against the Red Wings, especially in Detroit, where the Stars lost twice this year, only going 1-3 over the course of the series this year. Will Turco continue this hot streak? My guess would be yes. Unfortunately for him, I don't think his team is better than the Red Wings, considering one of their second line players, Johan Franzen, just broke the franchise goal record for a series, besting Gordie Howe's mark of 8 in a 7 game series, with 9 in a 4 game series. Their starting line of Henrik Zetterburg, Pavel Datsyuk and Tomas Holmstrom is, in my opinion, the best line in the country, with Sydney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Marian Hossa coming in as a close second. Personally I think the Wings will win in 6 games, and the Penguins, who still have not played a quality opponent in my mind, will march through the Flyers in 5 games, setting up a pretty interesting Stanley Cup Finals. Personally I think the Wings will win (then again, I'm a hometown fan) but lets see how things work out.
Posted on: April 25, 2008 1:46 am
Edited on: October 5, 2010 12:37 am
- So THERE'S the offense: 30 runs in 3 games? Apparently that's all the Tigers need to sweep a team in a 3 game series. Welcome back Curtis Granderson, we missed you. The offense obliterated the Rangers, putting up a lot of points in a hurry. A 5 run deficit apparently means nothing to these guys, an 11 run inning will cure that but quick. I'm glad to see the bats booming downtown, hopefully they don't get cold by the time I'm out there on Sunday.
- Pistons prove they can play when they care: Turns out, Philly has no chance of winning this series if the Pistons actually put their minds to beating the 76ers. A near 30 point blowout in Detroit proved that. Hopefully this momentum continues into the road games at Philly. I'm sticking to my prediction of Pistons in 6.
- Renewed Rivalry?: The Wings and Avalanche meet for the first time in the playoffs since 2002 when the Wings won the Stanley Cup, with the Wings taking Game 1 with a 4-3 victory. While many of the old time hockey (see: pre-lockout) fans want this to be the same as the old wars these two teams waged on each other, it just feels slightly forced to me. Yes, I do direly wish that this was the days when Patrick Roy battled Claude Lemieux for the title of "Detroit's Most Hated Rival", but these aren't the same Avs, and they really aren't the same Wings. I'm going to enjoy this series for what it is, a good Conference Semi-Final, and most likely a fun series to watch if all the games follow like this one (Osgood's save with 8 seconds left, amazing), but I'm not going to turn it into what it is not, and that's part of that 6 years where these two teams waged war on the ice for 7 games and by the end you would have thought they won the Stanley Cup with the way these cities rejoiced from downing their hated rivals. Granted, it may turn into that, but I won't put that pressure on this series until then.
- Michigan Man goes #1: Congratulations are in order to my fellow schoolmate, Jake Long. He's fought for 4 years to earn the right to be the #1 pick in the NFL Draft, and I hope that he and the Dolphins find success with each other.
- Pacman gobbled up by Dallas: Jerry Jones is going to officially announce the new name for his team, the Dallas Rehabbers. They work wonders for troubled athletes, bringing them in, and turning them into semi-respectable pro athletes. I'd bash them for this move, but its worked in the past (Terrelle Owens doesn't annoy me half as much as he used to) so kudos to Dallas, you got a damn good corner for next to nothing. It makes me hate you even more, but props are deserved.
Posted on: April 22, 2008 1:03 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2008 1:53 pm
All sorts of sports things going on in Detroit right now:
- The Red Wings close out the Predators: What a difference a new goalie makes. Dominik Hasek played fairly well in the first couple of games, but in Nashville he really fell apart. Chris Osgood looked near unbeatable once he got in, and he only let up one goal in 2 and 2/3 games. Nick Lidstrom's goal from center ice was nothing short of amazing (and I still haven't decided whether that was his intent or was just trying to waste time...). It was a fun series, no doubt, but I'm nervous about the potential next round match ups. I want no part of the Calgary Flames, which is why I'll be rooting for the Sharks to close them out soon. Miikka Kiprusoff and Jerome Iginla scare me, especially because they have eliminated us in the past. There is nothing more that I would like to see than a renewal of the Colorado - Detroit rivalry that was so great during the 90's. Either way, its good to see that the Wings have gotten over their recent trend of losing in the first round to a hot goalie, especially because Ellis played so great for the Predators.
- The Lions and the NFL Draft: I'm not much of a Lions fan, to be honest, they're more of a punchline to me, but, I still follow with some sort of morbid curiosity that I can't expel. I blame my father for raising me a Lions fan. Either way, I think that this draft could potentially be something that would get me back and interested in the Lions. There seems to be a lot of talk in Detroit now of the Lions trading Roy Williams. There is speculation that Dallas, Philadelphia and Washington are all interested in the man who is best known for celebrating a first down while getting pummeled. However, the one that intrigues me the most is the Buffalo Bills. They have the 11th spot and they are reportedly interested in Devin Thomas, out of Michigan State. If Ryan Clady (from Boise State) is available, I would swap Roy Williams for him and then pick up a running back, which would also play into the Lions new offensive strategy of running the ball (which somehow they plan on doing without improving any aspect of the running game yet). If they don't do a good job in this draft, I think they will only be 4-12 this year.
- Where is the Offense?: Its interesting that the Tigers have one of the highest payrolls in the country and invested all this money into offense, and yet they have probably the most inconsistent offense in the country. 13, 1, 8, 2, 3, 5. That is the run totals of their last 5 games. It is incredibly frustrating watching this team play and wondering which offense you're going to see. There is a chance I'm going to be at the game on Sunday, but who knows which offense will show up. However, the recent pitching of Galarraga has been something to behold. Hopefully he doesn't get the Zach Miner syndrome and start to fall off once teams have seen him more than once. I can't wait for the pitching to get out of this slump, I think this team can be really amazing once they finally pick it up. Bandwagon fans around here are incredibly frustrating, freaking out because the Tigers have started off so slowly. Relax folks, its a long summer. The Tigers will be fine. They might not win 110 games, but they will be fine.
- The NBA Playoffs are here: Tim Duncan and Steve Nash gave us a show in their first round game last weekend. Is there anyone who can will their team to victory like Tim Duncan? 0-4 all season on 3's? Doesn't matter. I think the Spurs will win that series, but its definitely going to go all 7 games. Other series that intrigue me are the Mavs and Hornets. I personally can't stand the Mavericks, but I really am starting to fall in love with the Hornets. Maybe its the Katrina sympathy vibe, or maybe its just the fact that I love watching Chris Paul dominate defenses night in and night out. Either way, these teams match up pretty well, and it should be fun to watch. The Pistons did drop game one to Philly, but I don't expect that to be a trend in this series. The loss was probably the best thing that could happen to them, as they tend to get complacent when they blow out opening teams. I say Pistons in 6.