Well, I'll admit.. After the last game's epic collapse, I was left with very little hope. I mean, it's not that I don't believe in the team, I just felt like blowing a 2-0 lead which ended in a 3-2 loss against a powerhouse team like Tampa would really dampen the spirits of our Detroit Red Wings. Well, hey.. Guess what? I was wrong. We did the thing. Simply put, the good guys came out and made a statement last night. They not only defeated the Lightning, and not only took back home ice advantage, they put the blade right to their throat. With a dominant shutout victory, the Red Wings shifted all of the pressure back to their foe. This game was a lot of fun to watch for obvious reasons. Petr Mrazek was spectacular, as well as the rest of the team. They gave Red Wings faithful a reason to crack one open on a Saturday night in April.
Let's have a look, yeah? Yeah!!
You know what I love? Animals. You know who else loves animals? Riley Sheahan. The Big Irishman gave another $100 to puppies and kitties with this beautiful power play goal, on a brilliant setup from Henrik Zetterberg and Niklas Kronwall. Hey Riley, since it's a power play, can we make it $200 for the Michigan Humane Society?
I've thrown a lot of crap at the fourth line this season. I won't deny it, this line was a force for Detroit last night. Just look at this setup by Luke Glendening to Drew Miller, the "Silver Fox" to make it 2-0 in favor of the good guys.
Pavel Datsyuk looked like his hands and legs were made of jello in game four, but everyone has an "off night." Yes, even the most magical of men. The Magic Man himself put Detroit up 3-0 with this wonderful snipe on the man advantage. Props to Darren Helm for propping himself in front of Ben Bishop to give him absolutely no ability to track where the puck was going.
Figured this is worth mentioning, this goal came from a play where Steven Stamkos was called for "hooking." Here have yourself a look at the "hook" that was called:
We're up 3-0, which pretty much helps all Red Wings faithful feel a little bit better after last game. Why not make it 4-0 to put the nail in the coffin? From 200 feet out, Michigan-native Danny DeKeyeser tosses a puck into an empty-net to end the game.
While the guys in front of him did an excellent job of keeping the NHL's most-scoring team of creating quality scoring chances, 23-year-old rookie goaltender Petr Mrazek posted his second career NHL postseason shutout. This kid is the future, and let me tell you, the future looks damn good.
And just like that, Detroit is in control of the series 3-2. Petr Mrazek was magnificent, and there was a fantastic effort from all players who served for the Red Wings last night. The PK was outstanding, leaving Tampa scoreless on the man advantage yet again. I really want to make a highlight here.. I was given a whole lot of shit for my article earlier this season. I was pegged as "hater of Luke Glendening." This is completely false. Luke is one of the rare cases where the eye test outweighs what the stats say. Simply put, his abilities on the penalty kill and backchecking make him one of the most important players on this team. Hell, don't call it a coincidence, but Detroit let up three goals in game four after Glendening went down with an injury to his thumb. This kid is a dynamic piece of this team, and I absolutely ecstatic to call him a Red Wing. Please read more on this, as Nick Cotsonika provided some fantastic insight on his story, and what he has done.
This was a team effort. They defied the odds, and overcame. Most experts picked Tampa to take this series in six games. Well, don't you feel silly now? Don't count us out just yet.
Let's Go Red Wings!