There's the puck, right there!
The Red Wings could have saved me a lot of trouble in this game by being like the refs and simply not showing up in the third period.
Scoring and plus/minus analysis after the jump
1st Period 01:35 - Colorado Goal: Gabriel Landeskog (wrist shot) from Steve Downie and Ryan O'Reilly
Steve Downie dumps a puck in cross-corner that Ericsson passes up the boards to Abdelkader and Abdelkader tries to pass up the boards under pressure to Helm. The pass gets by Helm before he can get to it and Erik Johnson dumps it back in. Quincey chases Landeskog into the far corner for a board battle that is joined by both O'Reilly and Ericsson. Somehow O'Reilly gets it away from both of them and past Abdelkader watching the inside pass. The puck gets to Downie in close at the side of the net. Howard holds the post to eliminate the angle for the right-shooting forward, so he goes around the net with it. Once Downie gets to the other side, he tries throwing the pass into the middle. The puck bounces off the skate of Darren Helm, who is standing at the post to prevent the wrap-around. Off Helm's skate, the puck gets directly to Landeskog right in front (despite all five Red Wings players standing in a box that extends from the top edges of the trapezoid to the inner hash marks of the faceoff circle. Landeskog jams it through Howard to get the Avs on the board. Drew Miller will have his minus cleared. He's in the area, but he is supposed to be behind Landeskog to cover the point. Darren Helm will keep his minus. It's unfortunate that the puck bounced like it did off his skate, but there's also the issue of missing the pass that led to the keep-in by Johnson. Abdelkader will pick up a full minus (half-coverage, half-turnover). The pass up the boards that Helm misses is primarily him putting too much on it. However, it's also his job to prevent O'Reilly from getting the puck to Downie where he does. Ericsson and Quincey will also earn an extra half-minus each. There's nothing inherently wrong with both of them being in the same corner in the board battle, as the forwards do have their coverages, but they can't lose a man-on-man battle so easily.
1st Period 02:42 - Colorado Goal (SH): David Jones (wrist shot) from the refs
The Penalty - Mark Olver (goalie interference) Mark is all Olver Jimmy Howard... get it? Olver Howard? HahhahaaaaaaaafucktheAvalanche. No adjustment.
The Red Wings have trouble entering the zone after an initial clear and Johan Franzen takes an intentional offsides, which leads to a faceoff in the Wings' zone. Detroit wins this draw, but it gives the Avs PK a chance to set up a neutral zone defense. Quincey tries to hit Bertuzzi up the wing, but the pass doesn't connect and Bert (having lose all momentum) throws it back to reset the entry. This pass also doesn't connect, going all the way behind the net where Jimmy Howard leaves it for Quincey coming out. As Quincey turns the corner, he gets tripped, albeit accidentally, by Chuck Kobasew. Jones picks up the loose puck in the middle of the ice and fires it over the glove hand of Howard. This is stupid. Accidental tripping is still tripping. Thanks a fuckload, refs. I'm going to clear the minuses here for White, Filppula, and Hudler on this one. Quincey and Bertuzzi will keep their minuses for the passing issues which led the puck behind Howard in the first place. I'm also going to give Franzen a minus here for the intentional offsides which led to the faceoff deep in the Detroit zone.
Penalty Adjustment (x2): at 14:36 of the first period, the Red Wings' fourth line is doing some great work deep in the Colorado zone. The Avalanche respond by grabbing and interfering with people. Tomas Holmstrom sees this and rightfully thinks that it's ok for him to do a little bit of the same. Apparently, Holmstrom is wrong and he goes to the box. No adjustment. Later in the period, Jiri Hudler goes to the box for tripping when Paul Stastny hand-passes a puck by him and then flops. Again, the reffing standard makes this one impossible to adjust correctly. No adjustment.
Penalty Adjustment: 6:42 into the second period, Olver gets his second penalty for a phantom high-stick. It sure it nice to get bullshit phantom calls at weird times to make up for failing to just call the game right in the first place. No adjustment.
2nd Period 13:35 - Colorado Goal: Gabriel Landeskog (snap shot) from Ryan O'Reilly and Steve Downie
This play starts as Franzen, Bertuzzi, and Cleary combine to lose the puck on the half-boards in the Colorado zone, leading to a cross-ice pass to Ryan Wilson and an easy zone entry. Wilson pulls up on Quincey to avoid a check and turns it back in at the circle for a shot which is blocked by Cleary. Wilson stays with it and beats out both Cleary and Bertuzzi, allowing Downie to get it back up to Landeskog covering the point. He walks to the middle and does a give-and-go with Shane O'Brien to give himself a shooting lane from up top. The shot goes wide of the net and actually deadens at the boards. Downie establishes body position on Ian White behind the net and is able to feed a pass to Ryan O'Reilly just up the boards toward the corner. Kyle Quincey takes a step to get on O'Reilly right as the pass goes the other way straight through him to Landeskog coming in from the point. The rookie snaps it past Howard to put Colorado up 3-0. This is a case where nobody will have his minus cleared on an entire line's failure. The biggest mistake is Kyle Quincey's though, as he leaves the front of the net to get on O'Reilly and gives him the passing lane to hit Landeskog. Quincey will get a minus.
3rd Period 00:44 - Detroit Goal (PP): Jiri Hudler (snap shot) from Valtteri Filppula and Henrik Zetterberg
The Penalty - TJ Galiardi goes off for tripping Tomas Holmstrom after getting his stick ACCIDENTALLY caught in the players legs. No adjustment
Hudler and Zetterberg lose the zone on the power play, as the Wings have to chase Winnik up the ice to keep him from getting a scoring chance. Both Hudler and Z combine to take it away and Zetterberg picks it up to start the rush. Z gives to Lidstrom to start carrying up ice in the middle as he trails behind on the left wing and Val Filppula does the same in a parallel position to the right. After hitting the center stripe, Lidstrom drops to Z, who is cutting across to the middle. Z goes around the stick of Landeskog to Filppula and the Wings enter the zone on the right wing side with plenty of speed. Flip cuts off his rush at the half-boards to let Holmstrom take up position at the front of the net and Zetterberg get to the low net-side point. Flip goes to Zetterberg low as Landeskog comes back to pressure. Immediately after the pass, Filppula comes off the boards in front of Landeskog and receives the pass back from Zetterberg behind the coverage hole left by Jan Hejda coming in to pressure. Holmstrom has Ryan Wilson trapped behind his ass in front of the net, so he can't step out to challenge Filppula as he walks in toward the net on his angle. This forces O'Reilly to have to step over and pressure him. O'Reilly keeps Filppula from cutting across the middle, but he can't stop the pass to Jiri Hudler below the dot on the back door. Hudler receives the pass and wastes no time putting it in the open net. I just want to take a minute to point out that every pass on this sequence was done across a guy who was forced to defend multiple angles and lanes. That is how a successful power play is supposed to look. Lidstrom will pick up a half-assist for his part in the zone entry while Holmstrom will pick up a non-touch assist for preventing Wilson from making a play.
3rd Period 09:13 - Colorado Goal: Steve Downie (wrist shot) from Ryan Wilson and Ryan O'Reilly
After close to nine minutes of Red Wings pressure, the Avs get the dagger and eventual game-winner. Franzen gets tripped cutting into the middle of the Colorado zone at 8:36, which leads the Avalanche to gain possession in the Detroit zone as Downie dumps it in off the blocker of Jimmy Howard and retrieves it himself. Landeskog pokes it away from White and gets it up to the point to set the zone cycle. After a switch to the far side and a shot on net that goes wide, O'Reilly, Downie, and Landeskog cycle in the corner to Howard's right before Landeskog goes to O'Reilly covering the point. O'Reilly passes down low to the defender Wilson standing at the faceoff dot all alone. Wilson gathers the pass and turns in as Steve Downie separates from Ian White in front of the net. White tries do go down and block the cross-ice pass on this low 2-on-1, but Wilson gets it through for Downie, who has an easy shot into the wide-open net. The biggest mistake on this sequence is leaving Wilson uncovered at the dot. This is Nick Lidstrom's fault, as he feels Wilson come in and make contact at the top of the circle, but for some reason challenges O'Reilly at the point, despite that being Johan Franzen's responsibility. When O'Reilly goes to Wilson, Franzen and Lidstrom are standing side-by-side above the top of the circle with Helm just to the inside having been tracking to the inside of Landeskog on the play. Lidstrom will get a minus for this coverage error. Helm and Miller will have their minuses halved. They're primarily responsible for keeping the play to the outside where it goes into their areas and they do that. Although White was faced with a very tough assignment once the pass hit Wilson, he will keep his minus for not succeeding. The same goes for Franzen. Overall, I just want to point out the trip on Franzen that wasn't called and which led to the Avalanche gaining zone time and eventually the game.
Penalty: Justin Abdelkader fights Ryan Wilson and loses. He did get the whistle to blow while the Avs were threatening in the offensive zone again, but no adjustment.
3rd Period 13:22 - Detroit Goal: Jiri Hudler (tip in) from Henrik Zetterberg and Brad Stuart
Henrik Zetterberg wins an offensive zone faceoff to Brad Stuart. Daniel Winnik pressures Stuart as he steps toward the middle, but Stu gets a pass off to Henrik Zetterberg in front of Paul Stastny. Z turns and fires a low shot toward the net that gets through the stick of Erik Johnson and onto that of Jiri Hudler. Hudler tips it over Giguere's shoulder to make it 4-2. Zetterberg will get a plus for winning the faceoff cleanly.
3rd Period 14:53 - Detroit Goal: Valtteri Filppula (wrist shot) from Jiri Hudler and Henrik Zetterberg
90 seconds later, it gets interesting as the Wings' best line gets another. The Wings get a puck behind their own net when Zetteberg steps in to help Quincey in the corner. Z goes to Kronwall to reverse the play and Kronwall goes to Filppula up the boards. Flip gets to the blue line before he's pressured, so he goes back to the middle for Quincey joining. Quincey is pressured and sees three Avalanche players stacked at the blue line, so he dumps the puck into the corner and skates hard to forecheck. Jan Hejda gets to it first and pushes it up the boards to Winnik. The Avalanche winger never receives the pass as Zetterberg comes in to reach around him and push it back into the corner before fighting to keep it. Jay McClement tries to pinch Zetterberg off in the corner, but Z spins away and makes a bit of room as he turns to face the net from just above the corner on the boards. Zetterberg jams a pass right in front of the net hoping for a tip in from either Filppula tied up with O'Brien in front or Hudler all alone on the back door. The pass gets through to Hudler, but he puts the puck off the outside of the net. Hudler gets to it and tries to bank it in from just behind the line, but it bounces up of Giguere's stick and into the chest of McClement. Hudler gets another try at it on the backhand as the puck bounces back into the crease off McClement, but Giguere has the pads closed. Fortunately, Filppula is there to jam home the rebound and make it a one-goal game. Kyle Quincey will pick up an assist on this play as well as a bonus half-plus for his part in helping the rush. Zetterberg will earn a full plus for his work both in his own zone and in the offensive corner.
+1 to Henrik Zetterberg and Jiri Hudler: Even when they weren't busy creating all of the Red Wings goals, these two were noticeably good in a sea of noticeably bad players.
-1 to Danny Cleary: I know he's not 100% from his injury, but I don't know why the part of him that isn't 100% looks like his transmission.
-1 to Johan Franzen: Mule is essentially my standard-bearer for the Wings. In games where he's engaged the entire time, so are the Wings. When they loaf around for 40 minutes, so does he. Inasmuch as the entire team may deserve a minus, Franzen definitely does.
+0.5 to Jan Mursak: The 'Sak showed great hustle in this one and is coming back to looking a lot more like he did in the preseason before his injury. I want him to go to the net more, but I love his tenacity.
-1 to Ian White: Only two players on the Wings came out with a negative Corsi in this game and they both got minuses. That's not the whole reason for White's minus, but he did a ton of chasing in this one.
FIlppula loses out on the line bonus because of a whole series of shitty turnovers on the power play. Lidstrom might have shared White's minus, but he had a couple of vintage great plays to end rushes that brought him back to even.
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