Friday, December 11, 2009

Ducks coming to town today

I know he's not a Duck anymore, but still, this was one of the first results when I googled "Anaheim Ducks goons"

Let's first talk about the Wings. With the lastest injuries this is what they're gonna ice today:
Datsyuk - Zetterberg - Holmstrom
Bertuzzi - Abdelkader - Leino
Draper - Helm - Eaves
Maltby - Miller - May

Lidstrom - Rafalski
Stuart - Ericsson
Lebda - Meech

Howard (starts)

That's a bit freaky isnt't it. I will say that Abdelkader did a good job on the second line against St Louis, but there's a big question about how Leino's gonna be on that line, will Abbie have to do all the production, and also Abbie has been horrible on face offs this year. So we'll have to wait and see.

The team the Wings are meeting tonight is struggling. They're worst in the West. If there's one team the Wings should be able to beat, it's these guys. And the route to that goes through eliminating the Perry-Getzlaf line. At the last meeting, the Zetterberg line didn't do that and that line produced a lot, but luckily, Zetterberg produced even more. Now with Pasha on his line Z can hopefully keep that line quiet (they've been hotter than red hot this year) and maybe even get a goal in. The other Ducks lines aren't really that strong, but the same can be said about the Wings. So it's gonna be a battle.

At a time like this, with all those players injured, it's time to see who the leaders of this team are. So far, the ones that have stepped up in my mind are Henrik Zetterberg, Kris Draper and Brad Stuart. I also think the youngsters like Helm, Eaves, Miller, Abbie and especially Howard have done their part. But there are a few veterans on this team that need to step up. And step up now. The biggest of those names are Nicklas Lidström and Pavel Datsyuk. They haven't been themselves all year, and there is really no excuse for it, no matter how many we try to make. So Nick, Pasha, you need to step up, and you need to do it now. Another guy who needs to step up is Leino. He's in again because of the injuries and to me it feels like this is his final chance. He has the time until someone gets healthy and after that, it's home for him if he doesn't perform. I really hope the core guys that are left can step up an show us why they're our core players tonight.

The biggest key to the game though, is scoring. The Wings have struggled mightily with that lately and I think, that's the main reason for the losses. Because, the penalty killing has gotten better, the defense have (with a few exceptions) been better and Jimmy Howard has played excellent. He has deserved wins, but hasn't gotten any run support from his players.

Now, over to something more fun, and more important: Hating the Ducks

The Ducks goon factor has gone down this season, seeing as they've lost Chris Pronger, the biggest one of them all. But since Brian Burke took over the team (and even now after he left) even the most classy guy entering Anaheim becomes a goon. Cases in point are Scott Niedermayer, who suddently has become a dirty guy and who tried to kill Pasha with an elbow and then decided to challenge the same Pasha to a fight last year. Another one is Teemu Selänne, who suddently became a diver.
But the two I hate the most are Cory Perry and Ryan Getzlaf. Both are extremely talented players, but their goonery, Perry's chirping and Getzlaf's slappable face with that nasty smile just makes me sick.

Here's proof by the way, that you have to be a goon to root for a gang of goons:

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