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Wings Play Better, Still Lose, People Freak Out Jets 3 - Wings 2 (SO)

There's multiple storylines to every game, but the only one you need to know is that you should be very worried about everything

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

What's the saying? Moral victories are like kissing your sister? Something like that?

I guess the moral victory tonight was that the Red Wings played better than they have since Western Canada, did all the things they wanted to do, and got the game all the way to a shootout.

The flip side is that they still lost, their sixth straight game at Joe Louis Arena without earning 2 points, and the early season struggles continue. Despite outshooting the Jets 43-21 and generally controlling play, the Wings needed a late power play goal by Pavel Datsyuk just to get the game to overtime. Detroit was able to survive the 5 minute OT without giving up a goal, but Jimmy Howard thought it was 2010 again and failed to make a save in the shootout, putting the rotten cherry on top of the melted sundae that was tonight's game.

It's been a while since I've done one of these, so you'll have to bear with me as I get back in the swing of things. What's next? Oh right......BULLETS!!!

  • If you were on Twitter at all today, there was the 167th discussion around #fancystats and blah blah blah so before the game I decided to chart FunClose while I watch the games. Turns out that my hypothesis was correct:


  • A big minus of the night was that Johan Franzen took a penalty for slashing, but a plus was that it was the most emotion he's shown in a year. He'll get a pass for it being his first game back after injury, but we'll see how he does on Friday.
  • I understand that the Wings want to get offense from sources other than the first line, but someone needs to alert Mike Babcock to what's happening on the ice. Specifically, the Mikael Samuelsson-Tomas Tatar-Joakim Andersson line was very very good. At 5-on-5, their line was 36-11 in FenTotal (I don't know either, but that sounds really good), yet the most that any of them played was Andy's 14:31. Samuelsson wasn't his usual floaty self, and Tatar creates offense every time he touches the puck.
  • This was not Jimmy Howard's best games, and his struggles in the shootout were highlighted as both goals scored on him went blocker-side. I love Jimmy as much as the next guy, but with back-to-backs this weekend against 2 teams they are going to be fighting with for one of those new-fangled wild card spots, it would behoove him to either play better or have a seat. I will say that I believe part of his issue could be the fact that he's started 15 of the Wings' first 19 games of the season, and probably will not get a rest during the Olympics.
  • Hey so Kyle Quincey wasn't terrible and yes I know he lost his stick on the Jets' second goal but as I'm sure J.J. will point out in CSSI there were several other players out of position and Howard bit harder than Logan Couture on his latest "entertaining" DVD.
  • Dan Cleary was a healthy scratch in a game in which the Wings had 43 shots on goal, and Mike Babcock has got some real thinking to do tonight.
  • I don't know how or why this would be true, but Gustav Nyquist in the lineup would have meant a Red Wing victory. Hahahaha just kidding, how would Nyquist make a difference with only 6 minutes in ice time?
  • Gregg Krupa hates the shootout:
  • If there's a bright side, it's that we were witness to another fantastic game from the top line, and Danny DeKeyser is my new favourite player in the world who is not a forward wearing 13 or 40 or 21.
  • I was going to make some sort of hyperbolic comment about the Wings being terrible and how they'll never win a game again and so on and so forth but this is my first recap in quite some time and I want to end on a high note. So, good job, good effort, Detroit. More games like that will result in more wins. Probably.