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Recap: The Habs and the Hab-Nots: Wings 1 - Canadiens 2 (OT)

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NHL: Montreal Canadiens at Detroit Red Wings Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Pre-Game

I got to see the game last night in person, and I got to meet the inimitable Jeff Hancock.

A couple cool things from last night. I sat next to Frans Nielsen’s wife’s grandfather and another gentleman that I assume was either Nielsen’s father or Frans’ wife’s father based on age. Neither spoke too much English, so I don’t know for sure.

Also, we were perfectly in-line for Mantha’s snipe. I’m pretty sure that Mantha and I were the only two people in the arena who knew that puck was in for about two seconds. The puck hit the net, I jumped out of my seat, and I was the only one.

Also, if you watched the Fox Sports Detroit feed, my friend an I (he is an Islanders fan, but he wore my Datsyuk Heritage Classic jersey in solidarity against the Devils) were taped chanting “Let’s go Red Wings” repeatedly on the concourse before the game. Maybe we made it into the broadcast. Maybe we sucked. If we did, I was in the Larkin red jersey on the right side of your screen.

Anyway, here goes tonight’s games against Les Habs. If you didn’t know, “Habs” is French for “Alien Goalie.”

Also, my brother got me a Dylan Larkin Lego thingie for my birthday, and I finally put it together. I was hoping to have it do expressive things after each period, but it’s not that flexible, so here it is for good luck! Let’s go D-Boss!

Lego Dylan Larkin
Peter Flynn

First Period

Before we get started, right now, I am 0-1 in writing MTL recaps, with a -5 goal differential. If we suck tonight, it’s not my fault, and I booked my flight and tickets to Detroit for the MTL game in January, so I won’t write the recap for that one, making it not my fault if we lose. But no, last night’s game was a lot of fun, so positive mode. Super positive mode activate....form of.....Wings win!

Price’s numbers this year are a lot of wins, and 1 loss and 1 overtime loss.

Based on last night’s game, and with the Canadiens power play, a big key to our play tonight will be our ability to shift over on our penalty kill.

And we’re underway. Mrazek with a quick save and the Wings cleared the rebound. Mrazek needs to have good rebound control tonight.

After the next save, Petr covered it right away. Keep doing that, and we’re in good shape.

Our breakouts have not been very crisp lately, if we can’t sort that, we’re in trouble. Montreal has enough talent up front that they will punish our mistakes.

Weber made a pass, and, since he wasn’t doing something ridiculously dirty, I didn’t notice it was he who made the play.

Fun Fact, when Zetterberg sees Weber in person, his forehead feels a sort of phantom pain.

HOLY SCHNIEKES!

Petr Mrazek with an absolute monster of a save on Lehkonen: Geez Louise

Bertuzzi breaks in on goal and gets a shot on goal. Price shrugs it off and eats some Reese’s Pieces.

Halfway through the period, and the shots are MLT 5, DET 3.

Out of all of last year’s free agents, Radulov seems like the best signing. He was a really big gamble, but it seems to be paying off for Montreal. He’s the most noticeable player on the ice so far.

A Detroit shot was tipped on goal from Abelkader, but Price pushed it calmly to the side.

The Wings have iced it at least three times recently, and it’s because of the Montreal pressure. The Wings defense needs the forwards to be more available for simple passes rather than the long passes that are leading to icings.

So far, Mrazek has made a few nice saves and has good rebound control.

The Wings haven’t had a good scoring chance, but Mantha almost breaks in on a two-on-one. Tatar can’t stay onside, so still no good chances for Detroit.

Mrazek makes a rebound save on Plekanec near the end of the period. Mrazek’s playing well so far. The Wings offense, not so much. Tatar and Plekanec both get two for roughing, so we are 4 on 4 for the last 2 seconds of the period, and the first 1:58 of the....

Second Period

There’s a good reason for that.

Let’s hope the second period is better.

By the way, if you wondered where Steve Ott is, he’s at the Firefly reunion. If you didn’t know, he played the role of Hoban "Wash" Washburne in the cult classic:

Price and Mrazek trade good saves to start the period.

Abdelkader cuts back in for a nice shot, but Sheahan gets tied up in front and can’t put in the rebound. We are 24 minutes in, and Detroit finally had a good scoring chance. Other than that, things are going great.

The Red Wings get lucky. Really lucky. They were caught on a horrendous line change, but Montreal went offsides, preventing a two or three on none breakaway.

The Red Wings may have gotten away with a too many men on the ice penalty, but Montreal has Carey Price, so Les Habs are still doing ok.

Mrazek loses his mask in a net-front scrum. Fun Fact: Price’s mask is permanently attached to his head, so nobody sees his glowing green eyes.

Mantha nearly scores on a rebound! Oh boy was that close. Larkin and Mantha created a great chance. Man, this Mantha kid is good, huh?

Price snacks on a cat and misses his home of Melmac during the break in play.

Nielsen nearly scores on the PP. Montreal’s penalty kill does a good job of keeping pressure on the power play after that. Hopefully Detroit is taking notes.

We are overthinking things. Every pass and shot is taking a step too long.

If you heard a scream from Jeff Hancock, it’s because Brendan Smith went down with a knee injury. Smith has not played great this year, but his getting hurt is not going to help the team.

The replay looked really bad, but I don’t think it was dirty. It looked like a really bad accident. If there is ligament damage, which based on Smith’s initial reaction, it looks like there could be, that could be really bad for his year. Ugh.

I really hurt my knee in 6th grade, so it’s hard for me to watch those injuries. Best wishes to Smith on a quick recovery.

Mrazek makes another save and holds on to the rebound. He’s had trouble with rebound control this year, but he’s looked much more confident tonight.

Oh, for fuck’s sake. I really try not to swear here, but fuck it. Tyler Bertuzzi goes really awkwardly into the boards on a hit by Emelin.

I want to say it’s a bad hit, but it just looked like Bert was angled awkwardly. I really hope it’s not as bad as it looked, but it looked like it could be a break in his leg somewhere. Again, hoping I’m being overly dramatic, but it looked awful.

Abdelkader levels Daniel Carr, and Phillip Danault takes a retaliatory penalty. The Wings go to the power play with 1 minute left in the 2nd.

Zetterberg takes a shot from the right point. Vanek has a nice screen, but Price makes the save. The period ends. Carey Price orders up his normal intermission meal of fish fingers and custard.

Third Period

So far, Shea Weber hasn’t done anything ridiculous. I really hope people aren’t mad at me for jinxing it with this sentence.

GOAL!!!!!!!!!

Just like Fox Mulder, Justin Abdelkader’s long quest to beat the alien paid off. Wait, the last 2 seasons of the X-Files were terrible....Never mind. Who cares. We rule!

Franzy with the great pass to Abby and it’s 1-0 Wings. Glendening with the secondary assist.

It hit the Canadien defender’s stick on the way in, but whatever. GOOOOOOAAALLLLL.

We are on the penalty kill now. I missed it because I was hitting the O key to an obnoxious degree. You have no idea how much I have to edit these recaps when I get a little too excited...

Please, let us play less passively than last night....

Nice clear with a minute left on the PK.

Red Wings kill it off. Still 1-0. Mantha had a great pass to Zetterberg for the one-timer, and Carey Price is not human.

Fun Fact: Before every game, Montreal brings a junior goalie into the dressing room. Carey Price bursts out of his chest singing and dancing.

While I was putting some gifs into the recap above, Price made a ridiculous alien snow angel to keep the puck out.

Then, the worst play of the season so far. Dylan Larkin is hurt. The four worst words I can think of right now.

You be the judge.

Then, the Canadiens scored to tie it on a nice tip or whatever. Who cares. Larkin is hurt. 1-1, who cares. Larkin is in the locker room.

Oh, thank god, he’s back now. Nielsen missed on a great chance right before the TV timeout, but Dylan Larkin is seemingly OK. Emelin has hurt two of our players tonight, and he has a history of dirty hits, but you can give him the benefit of the doubt if you want.

Now Frans Nielsen leaves the ice clutching his face after engaging with Emelin. Mantha breaks in and puts a shot on net on Price. On the replay, you can see that Emelin punched Nielsen in the face. What a douchecanoe.

Tatar is taken down right in front of the goal, preventing a scoring chance, but no call.

I have to say, if you told me this morning we would have at least 1 point, I would take it. So, I’ll take it. And I hope Emelin chokes on his mouthguard during the TV timeout.

(and in his near-death experience learns that he should change his ways, and he becomes a force for good, then a teammate does the Heimlich and saves his life.)

Overtime

Last night, Green scored in OT. Let’s see a replay of that.

Penalty! Weber takes a slashing penalty. Boom.

Zetterberg sets up Tatar for a one-timer that looks good, but isn’t.

Larkin on the ice in OT, and he looks OK. Phew.

Oh Geez. Weber hits the post on a 2 on 1 in OT. Mrazek was beat, but no goal.

Mantha with a great shot, but Price saves it because of course, leading to a 2 on 1 the other way, and Radulov to Galchenyuk and he puts it past Mrazek.

2-1 (OT)

Post Game

  1. Phew:

2. Good on you, Z:

They asked Abdelkader about the Emelin hits, and he had a way more diplomatic response than I would. Also, he wore a USS Detroit hat, so I’m on team Abby. (I was in the Navy for 6 years).

We lost the second point, but getting a point against Montreal is great.