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Asleep at the Helm: Wings get cratered in Colorado

7-3 Avalanche

Detroit Red Wings v Colorado Avalanche Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images

The Wings are on the road in Colorado the night after dropping a 6-2 game in St. Louis. The prospects for this one don’t look good before puck drop, but if they’re going to insist on still playing the game then let’s recap it for you.

First Period

Darren Helm had a noticeable first shift. Good for him. 5:01 in, Devon Toews throws a wrister from the top of the zone that hits JT Compher’s stick and gets past Greiss. Official scoring gives it to Toews to start. I don’t care enough to go back and update things if the official scoring changes so you get to read these sentences instead.. 1-0 Avs.

Detroit doesn’t fare much better out of the goal and Andre Burakovsky blasts a one-timer past Greiss at 7:10. 2-0 Avalanche.

This one is frustrating because it comes on the follow up of what should have been a scoring chance for the Wings that Nick Leddy fucks up.

Less than a minute later Mo Seider takes a cross-checking penalty hitting Logan O’Connor. The Avs get upset about that but respond by playing grabass hockey for two minutes and Seider escapes the box.

Darren Helm scored on a breakaway. Asshole

3-0 Avs. Greiss’ night is done.

Refs give Detroit a pity penalty on a Landeskog hook while the Avalanche are still dummying the Wings. The power play is the first time Kuemper has to do any real work, but nothing doing.

The Avalanche keep trying to bury Detroit and get greedy in the last minute. Pius Suter and Vlad Namestnikov come back on a 2-on-1 and Suter feeds Namestnikov for the odd-man rush goal to make it 3-1 Colorado.

Score: 3-1 Colorado
Shots: 14-14
Stand Outs: No
Sit Downs: Nick Leddy, Thomas Greiss

Second Period

The second starts without the Wings getting caved so that’s good. Even better, Joe Veleno makes it 3-2 Colorado less than four minutes in by sliding a backhander under Kuemper from a weak angle. It’s an absolute gift of a goal.

On the very next shift Nathan MacKinnon fires a one-timer past Nedeljkovic to make it 4-2.

Avs took advantage of the Wings getting aggressive and giving up an odd-man rush. Colorado didn’t score on the rush, but on the continuation of the chaos caused by the Wings having to collapse back.

Then Andre Burakovsky makes it 5-2 on a faceoff win to Nedeljkovic’s right side.

Blashill burns the timeout here. It buys them fewer than three minutes before Samuel Girard makes it 6-2.

Then Raymond goes to the room after getting hurt and the night gets worse.

Detroit gets a PP with 8:15 to go on an offensive zone slashing penalty to Aube-Kubel. They waste most of the advantage before a faceoff win gets a cross-ice pass to Hronek for a long one-timer into the net. 6-3 Avs.

Detroit looks less like shit for a few more minutes before getting another PP chance. Erik Johnson knocks down Pius Suter in the Avs zone. The only good thing about this power play is that Lucas Raymond takes a shift.

Score: 6-3
Shots: 29-25 Colorado (15-11)

Third Period

DeKeyser trips Burakovsky early in the period. The Avs miss a lot of good passes and then Sam Gagner takes a high-sticking penalty waving for a puck above Andre Burakovsky’s head. That’s a bad idea and it’s a 5-on-3 advantage.

Fortunately, Colorado treats this like passing practice and both cheaters escape without getting dirty looks.

Zadina almost scored again and then Burakovsky almost got the hat trick and I almost wrote some actual analysis on this period but nothing doing any way.

12:11 in, Filip Hronek enters the Avs zone and Cale Makar nails him in the numbers with a cross-check. Hronek heads to the room and Detroit heads to the power play. Hronek comes on for the second power play shift and puts the first shot on net.

Blashill pulls Nedeljkovic with more than five minutes to go. Detroit doesn’t score and Makar hits the empty net down the ice to make it 7-3. I’m not putting a highlight of that one in here. If you’re capable of reading all the way down to this sentence you’re capable of figuring out how to search for a highlight of an empty net goal and I’m grumpy.

Conclusion

Lots of poke & hope hockey from the team tonight. Let’s single some folks out:

Dylan Larkin was unusually... reachy with his stick. He’s far from the only one (Rasmussen frustratingly so), but as it’s more out of character for him than... say... Filip Zadina.

In general, an unwillingness to skate into the body to separate a player from the puck was the reason the Wings got walked around, skated past, and caught from behind. Let’s single out Sam Gagner and Robby Fabbri for this one.

We need one defenseman who isn’t Mo Seider to be able to handle forechecking pressure in his own zone. Flip Hronek and Nick Leddy were a nightmare together. Danny DeKeyser disappeared in Seider’s shadow. Oesterle and Renouf are two players that I’m pretty sure played in this game.

There were other noticeable times where it felt the skaters weren’t confident enough in where their opponents are and got rid of pucks that they should have been skating with. Pius Suter raised my eyebrows more than once in this game by dealing off to a winger when he still had ample space to carry up through the middle of the neutral zone.

On the bright side, I think Ned did well in relief and I’m glad that Raymond was able to return from that knee-on-knee collision he took.

We have until Tuesday to worry about how terrible everything is. Pace yourselves.