The Boys Are Back in Town
Well, kind of. The Red Wings “Red Team” took on the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first preseason game for both teams, which resulted in a disappointing 3-2 loss. Chris Kunitz got the Pens on the board first, scoring halfway into the first period. Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall evened the score only two minutes later after being set up by a beautiful pass from the great Pavel Datsyuk. He makes it all look so easy. Evgeni Malkin and Matt Niskanen put the bad guys up 3-1 during the 2nd, with Niskanen scoring on the power play. To me it seemed as if Malkin was on the ice for the entire game, and I haven’t decided whether that was due to his irritatingly skillful play or because the announcers were slurping him all night (get a room, gentlemen). Things started looking up for the Wings when Jiri Hudler tipped one in at the beginning of the 3rd period, but sadly, tonight’s story had no happy ending. Although it wasn’t Howard’s best game, I don’t think this is at all an indication of what the season holds for our boy, Jimmy. Even though that first goal made me shake my head (tsk-tsk), my faith remains. MacDonald played well during his one period of play and allowed no goals during the third. Also, I found it hard to judge the newbies just from tonight’s game, but Mursak and Smith were the only ones who really stood out to me. It will be interesting to see how they compare to those on the “White Team.”
Tonight’s exhibition game was only a taste (and a tease) of Red Wing hockey, but it gave us an opportunity to see who is fighting for a spot on the roster and to fall in love with Datsyuk all over again. Wearing #24 in memory of his good pal and former Wing, Ruslan Salei, simply reminds us of why he is a four-time recipient of the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy (given to the player who has exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability). Tomorrow the Wings take on the Philadelphia Flyers at 7:00 EST in London, Ontario, and on Friday the Wings will take on the Flyers at home at the Joe Louis Arena.
Posted on September 22, 2011, in Uncategorized and tagged Brendan Smith, Jan Mursak, Jiri Hudler, Joey MacDonald, Lady Byng, Nicklas Kronwall, Pavel Datsyuk, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.