3 Takeaways From Last Night’s Game
Three quick things I took from last night’s game at the Joe.
- Filppula was the best player on the ice. The box score shows a zero for SOG, but he earned an assist in the second when Johan Franzen tipped his blast from a Hudler feed. Filppula won battles all over the ice, and carried the puck effectively all night. He finished with two assists in just under 20:00 of ice time.
- Jimmy Howard is a solid NHL goaltender. I’m not ready to call the 27 year old elite, but he’s looked it so far this year for the Red Wings. Howard came up big multiple times at the end of the 2nd and 3rd periods, when the young Colorado team had pressure. A lot of pressure. He gave up a flukey first goal for the 2nd time in 3 games and a late PPG in the 3rd, but all in all goaltending really proved to be the difference between the two clubs last night.
- Now I know you’re all waiting for me to bash Ericsson here, who had one of his worst games as a Red Wing last night, but I’m instead going to praise Tomas Holmstrom. The 38 year old Swede was easily the best player on his line (Cleary and Datsyuk, both who struggled in the first two periods), and was very active against the young Avalanche defense last night. Holmer gave coach Mike Babcock 15 plus solid minutes in the corners, a place many Red Wings forwards did not find themselves last night.
- That pass from Hudler was unreal. Love him or hate him, that was a special play to turn and throw the puck back to Filppula. He was rewarded with an assist.
- Emmerton and Brunnstrom played under 13 minutes combined, however, they were effective. Both were on the ice to draw a key penalty that lead to the second goal. They also forced the Avalanche into a few icing calls, which led to mismatches on ensuing shifts. Brunnstrom had a great opportunity to score his first Red Wings goal but was denied on a third period breakaway.