The author slides the recap on paper across the table to you. You’ve never seen a deader look in a man’s eyes.
The good news with the way this started: the Wings applied some excellent pressure early. The bad news: Larkin and Stetcher collided early and somehow Stetcher was the one that walked away okay. Larkin was the shaken one. Fortunately he came back about 5 minutes later, but still concerning.
Then Nashville got a 2-on-1 by catching Stetcher pinching. Helm streaked back to try catching up to Rocco Grimaldi, but he couldn’t catch up to Grimaldi, who roofed it on Greiss. 1-0 Preds. Assist from Haula.
Then, in an effort to cover up #Peelgate, Mantha got called for tripping Alexandre Carrier, so the Wings went to the penalty kill pretty quickly after going in the hole. Or, they would have been a man down quickly, but they couldn’t touch the damn puck for near a minute, so the Preds got a ton of extra time before their power play even started (not that they did anything interesting with that time.)
After one clear by the Wings on the kill, Nashville gained the zone and cycled the puck back along the blue line. Tolvanen then walked the puck into the right-side circle and snapped the puck high past Greiss’s glove. 2-0 Preds.
Then Grimaldi scored one in the same spot from a Zetterberg level of tight angle. 3-0 Preds. Buh-bye, Greiss. Welcome to the show, Calvin Pickard.
4-0 Preds. Hat trick Grimaldi. Shots are 8-1.
Ahem, anyway. The the Wings didn’t do much else for the rest of the period. Maybe you’d call their play okay? Larkin had some good moments, though.
Then the Wings had one of the worst power plays I’ve ever seen, then another one that scored quickly, so yeah, the Wings cut the deficit to 4-1. Good on Bobby Ryan getting back in the goal scorers column.
Then maybe Nashville scored again to make it 5-1? Nope, ruled offside, and that’s how the period ended, 4-1.
Score: 4-1 Nashville
Shots: 13-11 Nashville
Save Percentages: Greiss .571, Pickard .833, Blashill 1.000
Okay, second period, second life. It started with the Wings getting hemmed in nearly non-stop for the opening two minutes.
Actually, I take that back. The Wings spent most of the opening seven minutes hemmed in, although Bobby Ryan got a real good chance in the right circle just before the commercial break.
Nashville started to get sloppy nearing the midpoint of the frame, giving Detroit the opportunity to gain the zone on them. In particular, their passes started to go all willy-nilly, knocking them out the Wings’ zone repeatedly. A stronger team would punish them harder for these types of mistakes.
It would be the Wings getting further punished off a real bad bounce off Stetcher’s stick while Granlund would try to pass in front of Pickard. The puck would redirect perfectly through the five-hole to make it 5-1 Preds. Granlund didn’t even look happy about it.
Josi would make an effort to put Nashville up 6-1, but a nice glove save from Pickard kept the score where it was. It’s worth mentioning that he hasn’t been terrible since coming in to relieve Greiss. Nothing stellar, but given his previous run with the Wings there’s nothing to be upset about.
Great shift by Zadina towards the end of the period resulted in the Wings on the power play. They wouldn’t convert before the period ended, but Detroit would head into the third period with over 60 seconds still remaining.
Score: 5-1 Nashville
Shots: 21-16 Nashville
Something Positive: According to FSD, the Wings have been controlling possession.
Nope, no dice on that power play. The Wings kept up the momentum from it, though...
...and then Nashville was able to cycle in Detroit’s zone again. Mathieu Olivier walked the pick and fired a wrister from up high in the zone, beating Pickard and making it 6-1 Preds.
Larkin would get called for a penalty not long after, just in case anyone thought the refs were trying to fix this one so the Wings could get back in it #TeachTheControversy.
The Wings would kill off the penalty, saving themselves from further embarrassment, at least for the moment.
Some other stuff happened for the rest of the period, including another goal from Rocco Grimaldi with two minutes to go, but 50 minutes of this game have been like the 50 minutes of The Return of the King after the ring is already thrown into Mount Doom. If you watched this whole thing, give yourself a gold star. You’re a superfan.
Score: 7-1 Nashville
Shots: 30-21 Nashville
Should the Fans Be Mad About This Loss?: I guess if you want to. They were outplayed but the gods of fate were not smiling on them, either. Your call, really.