After Detroit's win last night, we got the bad news about Pavel Datsyuk's broken wrist. With a short turnaround, it may be very interesting how this team comes out having to adjust immediately instead of a day off or two to get a scheme going. But with the way the Wings are structured, Pavel Datsyuk going out of the line-up has the same impact on the roster as a Drew Miller or Jiri Hudler, the team will press on without a roster adjustment for the time being and plug a player in.
But just because Datsyuk's injury doesn't affect the roster, doesn't mean it won't impact the team's play. I'd lose my blogging license (you have to pass a rigorous test of sitting in your mother's basement for a week in only your underwear and surviving on nothing but Mountain Dew and Hot Pockets) if I made it seem that losing a player of such skill and importance to the team wouldn't affect the team's play. The biggest question is whether or not the team steps up in Pavel's absence or is sluggish to adapt in the first few games without "The Magician".
St. Louis is currently 12th in the West with a 4-4-2 record in their last 10 games. But 12th in the Western Conference means that they're within striking distance (3 points) of as high as 7th place. The Blues have been riddled with injuries this season to some key players and it's greatly affecting their play.
Detroit heads to St. Louis tonight to face the Blues and the biggest thing to watch will be who steps up in the absence of Datsyuk.
St. Louis Game Time is your SB Nation Blues page.
More after the jump, including the form.
- I believe we'll see Chris Osgood in net tonight. Of course this means the chase for #400 is on. That'd be swell if Ozzie got it against one of his former teams. Who would you prefer to see in net tonight, Oz or Jimmy?
- Like I mentioned above, it'll be interesting to watch to who steps up in the place of Datsyuk. Who do you folks have? I have Johan Franzen. Now's as good a time as any for him to really start taking a commanding role in the offense. I know that sounds dumb considering he's second on the team in goals but we all know what he's capable of so it's time for him to get to it.
- David Backes leads the Blues in points with 24. "Inglourious Backes" was a bit of an American hero before the Olympics last year, beating Canadian players up left and right before the tournament started. But now that the Olympics are over, he's back to slashing goaltenders and crosschecking people. Alex Steen leads the Blues in goals with 11.
- Let's go curly again. he Blues are one of the lower teams in the league in goals for per game and power play. The Wings shouldn't look past that though as the Central Division rivalry brings out the best in both teams and the Blues could chip in some extra scoring if they have that little extra motivation. Do the Wings shut them down or the Blues break through?
- St. Louis fans must have short memories because they seem to forget how plagued with injuries the Wings were last season. "it is nice to see other teams' having to deal with some of the same problems the Blues have faced this year." Yet we weren't able to use that as an excuse last year I'm sure. I wonder how long it takes that thread to just turn into "FUCK DETROIT!" or something similar. 5 comments? I would say that's a record but I guarantee there's a post with that in the body or as the first comment.
St. Louis Blues Injuries
Player Injury Type Injury Date Patrik Berglund other-excused 12/23/2010
Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)
Player Injury Type Injury Date T.J. Oshie ankle 11/11/2010 Andy McDonald concussion 12/05/2010 David Perron concussion 11/05/2010 Dave Scatchard other-excused 12/19/2010
- Score Prediction: 4-2 Detroit. I think Detroit playing last night actually helps them, we've seen at times this season that they play pretty well in the second night of a back-to-back.
- Player of the Game Prediction: I picked Franzen to step up in the absence of Datsyuk so why not pick him for POTG?