Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Game 3

Cue the references to the 'flip side of the coin' and all that. Almost a mirror image of Game 2. Wings came out hot, early lead, and let it slip away, mostly due to dominant work in the corners by the Sharks. And a really bad slew-foot penalty by Bertuzzi. Although that was after the go-ahead goal, it really took the wind out of the Wings' sails. A 6-on-5 Wings advantage would not have been fun for two minutes, or at least a minute-thirty. Instead, the Wings had to kill the penalty, on which the Sharks had good puck possession, then try to turn it around in 30 or 40 seconds, with the crowd on their feet, hopefully providing that final boost of adrenaline to the Grier line.

Joe was dominant. On a 6-game point streak now, he was double-shifting most of the third period, trying to tire out Draper and Lidstrom, and then create scoring chances once they were off the ice. Nobody other than Bertuzzi is really big enough to muscle Joe off the puck along the boards. And it didn't seem like Bertuzzi was really playing much of a game. So bad, in fact, that E.J. Hradek is saying that the Wings should scratch him for Game 4. I can't imagine them doing that, but Holmstrom is reported to be on his way to SJ in order to suit up.

Playing Homstrom is a risk, but down 2-1, it's one the Wings have to take. It's great to have a player with heart that will play through injuries, but do you want a player that's not fully healthy? Just like Cheech wasn't the rest of the Nashville series, and probably even now. I guess Holmstrom's real asset is to stand in the front of the net and create havoc, and his injury is (supposedly) an eye injury, so he may be close to 100% right away. But not being able to see a booming Lidstrom shot from the point could be hazardous to your health.

One last note- I sure hope Guerin is giving 'locker room leadership' or 'playoff know-how' or some of that shit, because he sure ain't doing squat on the ice. Shooting from every possible angle is great and all, but after a while it starts looking like the lazy way out.

I sure wish my Treo took better pictures, but oh well. Here's one of the crowd after Cheech's goal, about as loud as I've ever heard it in there, with a sea of white towels.


chico said...

You should send that pick on to these guys for their playoff album :


Mike said...

Thanks, I sent all the ones I took to Jasper's rink.

Ian said...

1) Holmstrom arrived in San Jose shortly before game 3, so you can bet he's ready to suit up.

2) I fail to see how playing Holmstrom is a risk. Don't say "supposedly", of course he has an eye injury; Craig Conroy almost popped his eye out with a cork in game 6; he came out right after that and hasn't played since. He can see fine; they're just worried about "re-bleeding".

The games have gotten better as this series has gone on. This series has been a pendulum, and that plus Holmstrom's return should mean big things for game 4. Go Wings, and best of luck (but not too much) to the Sharks.

Mike said...


I think playing injured people are a risk for two reasons.

1. They may not be 100% back, and could hurt the team by not being fully ready to play. I did not see the Conroy incident, and I believe you that he is fully back. I was just poking a little fun at how NHL teams downplay injuries, and occasionally cover up one injury with another.

2. They are at greater risk for re-injury. I'm not a doctor, so I can't speak intelligently to this point, especially vis-a-vis Holmstrom.

I'm anticipating a great game tonight.

Paul said...

"And a really bad slew-foot penalty by Bertuzzi."

You can't be serious. A slew-foot? Not even close. Bertuzzi wasn't the one who initiated contact - he was driving the net with the puck and both players' feet got tangled.

I hate refs who think just because somebody falls down there must be a penalty somewhere.

Mike said...

Does it really matter who initiated contact? A slew foot is a tripping penalty regardless of the prior circumstances.

At the time, at game speed, it looked like a slew foot to me. I was sitting in the same corner that it happened, about 20 rows up. But I'm a homer, I admit it. For whatever reason, they don't show replays of that stuff on the jumbotron. I only had one look at it.

I've been looking for video of it for the past couple of days, with no success. If you can post a link to the video, I'm willing to be convinced otherwise.

I hate refs who think just because somebody falls down there must be a penalty somewhere.

Again, we happen to agree on something. I'm often the the annoying guy in the stands that explains to outraged spectators that even though Joe fell down it's not a penalty. I like to pretend I'm a hockey fan first, Sharks fan second.