The Penguins went into Joe Louis Arena and dropped their contest to the Wings 3-1. The Penguins never really seemed to have much control over the game and we really got to see what the Wings team was like at full strength.
The Wings can be a scary team and they dominated the Penguins for stretches of the game tonight and it was really tough to watch as Detroit pushed the issue and were getting to the net. Thomas Holmstrom's fat ass was in MAF's grill all night and there wasn't much anyone cold do about it. Bing tried to push him out but he was no match and it led directly to Zetterberg's first of two goals on the night.
The Penguins scored a goal to cut the lead to 2-1 on a Pascal Dupuis goal late in the second period but the Penguins couldn't get much going after that. Chris Kunitz played a nice game and worked his balls off to set up the Dupuis goal, but that was probably the closest the Penguins got until Alexei Ponikarovsky rang the goal pipe from the slot with about three minutes left to go in the game.
Not to say the Penguins didn't give the effort but it just wasn't their night. Things weren't flowing and the defense wasn't up to snuff against a pretty talented team, which has sort of been the way things have gone with the Penguins this whole season. They can stack up with the best of the best but this season it seems to be harder and harder to hold on to leads and really put the foot on the throat of opponents. Hopefully this will change.
Marc Andre played a pretty good game tonight and was probably the best player on the ice for the Penguins. He made big saves when the Penguins were only down one goal but gave up a bad goal on Zetterberg's second. It looked as if MAF got fooled when he let go of the wrist shot right inside the blue line and just got beat on the blocker side and gave the Wings a big two goal lead.
The Wings are going to be a tough team to match up against in the playoffs for whoever gets them. Like I said, the Penguins came out with a less than stellar performance but the Wings are a solid team.
The Wings fans were uncharacteristically bad tonight. Not bad in terms of cheering for their team, but bad in terms of booing Sidney Crosby every single time he touched the puck. I mean the Penguins have played in JLA more than a few times in the past few years, most with the Stanley Cup on the line, and they never gave it to Sid in that way. They were giving the "Crosby Sucks" chant that was thought to be trademarked by the Philadelphia Flyers, something they never have done before. I mean as much as Crosby does suck for being the leagues leading goal scorer I was kinda baffled to hear it.
Crosby was giving up some emotions late in the game. So much for not having any emotions. Bing went right after Zetterberg at the end of the game with a few shots and then Zetterberg threw a punch at Bing and he went right back after him but Wings rookie keeper Jimmy Howard went after Bing and they had words after the game. If the Wings and Pens make it to the finals this year again that will be interesting to watch.
Am I worried about the Penguins? No. They will be fine so don't go bash me and say that I am just some bandwagon guy who is giving up. This is a Stanley Cup contending team that is ready to clinch up a playoff berth and could have the two seed coming out of the east. The Penguins do need to tighten things to finish up the season and go into the playoffs strong. They got it.
Overall it was a tough night and it will be even tougher the next week as the Penguins match up with the Capitals and Flyers. Nobody needs to tell any of us what these points mean. Lets get it on.