Detroit took on Colorado tonight and lost 4-5 in a shootout in which nobody managed to solve the riddle that is Avalanche backup goaltender Peter Budaj. The Wings came into Tuesday Night's tilt rested after Saturday's 3-2 defeat of the Chicago Blackhawks and took on a Colorado squad that had lost the previous night to Philadelphia after ruining a banner-raising ceremony of their own.
Johan Franzen scored two while Todd Bertuzzi added two helpers, but that wasn't enough to keep the Red Wings from losing the lead three times on the night. Ah well, that 82-0 was just a pipe dream anyway. Colorado had a lot of jump and played aggressively but in control. They outshot Detroit 38-28 on the night and really took advantage of a Detroit club that was missing Brian Rafalski's outlet pass.
Hit the jump for the bulleted thoughts:
- Modano and Hudler are back to being way out of sync instead of slightly out of sync. They each had a blue line turnover that led to a Colorado goal. They'd be best served to sort that shit out. Modano faces Dallas on Thursday with (surprise!) the rest of the Red Wings; expect him to be better in front of that crowd.
- The 2nd line of Franzen-FIlppula-Bertuzzi continues to produce while the Circus line continues to impress. I don't really care if line 1b outscores line 1a this season (considering the Datsyuk-Zetterberg-Holmstrom line consistently sees top defensive matchups). However, I will say that I don't expect it to happen.
- Speaking of pleasant surprises (were we?) - it's nice to see Datsyuk with 2 goals in the Wings' first three games. The guy has historically been a slow starter and I'm hoping that his fast start will keep up all season long.
- Speaking of speaking of which (huh?) Todd Bertuzzi leads the Red Wings in points with five. Considering his entire job is to backcheck like last season and skate in straight lines, I'm so happy with him right now that I'd let him wax my eyebrows with duct tape if he wanted.
- Brad Stuart, who we all worried about switching sides on the ice and having trouble adjusting has quietly put up a +5 rating and has once again been the best purely defensive defenseman we have. Kronwall had good jump early, but faded late and had what I would consider a bad game. Aside from that, Janik had a really stupid, pointless fight, Kindl doesn't look comfortable and it shows, and Lidstrom is off to a good start, despite not really looking like it.
- Jimmy Howard didn't play badly tonight, but he didn't play well enough to win it for Detroit. He could have shut down the Winnik and Jones goals late and he didn't. The loss isn't on him, but it's hard to win when you give up four goals. I'm interested to see how his bounce-back start will look.
- Helm and Eaves were dangerous on the PK, converting one shorthanded chance and creating several more. I like watching them kill penalties (at least as much as I can actually "enjoy" watching my team play shorthanded.)
- Detroit lost the shootout in the most boring way possible, but they deserved to. You send that much talent out there and get no goals, you get what's coming to you when Brandon Yip buries one. My grandmother used to say those exact same words.
- Get ready to hear all about how the Avalanche are awesome regular season-rivalry paper champs.
Red Wings face the Stars on Thursday. Hopefully Mike Ribeiro's wife is in attendance to start trouble. I hear she's a real firecracker.