I’m a little behind in reading all of the links I’ve added to my Instapaper account so I spent the last few days getting caught up. Two of my saved entries was blog posts by PuckDaddy about 10 things he thought ruled and 10 things he thought that sucked about the playoffs. Since this is a Red Wings blog it made me think about what I thought ruled and sucked about the playoffs for the Red Wings so here is my list…
#5. Second round loss
One of the most disheartening feelings I experience as a Red Wings fan isn’t so much a failed Stanley Cup run, but it’s when exactly the run ends. Not even making the playoffs is total heartache, a first or second round exit really hurts, but if they make either of the finals at least I feel like we were banging on the door step. Not making it past the second round is like a hot date not even giving you a good night hug…you feel like shit and you’re stuck wondering what the hell happened for days to come. There are a few Western Conference teams I can stand losing to, but the Sharks are not one of them.
More after the break…
#4. Poor performance from key players
Before every playoff game you’ll hear insightful commentary from guys like Pierre McGuire and they say something similar to “your best players need to be your best players.” As if we didn’t already know that statement is true. Looking at the stats there were a few guys with stellar stats like Zetterberg with a plus 11 rating or Lidstrom with a plus 7. Some guys didn’t do anything but hurt the Wings such as Williams, Eaves, and Helm (sorry NOHS but a minus 4 rating isn’t good). I was really expecting guys like Cleary, Kronwall, and Filppula to step up, but they amassed a combined 16 points over 36 games. I think that’s a very disappointing performance from guys that are supposed to provide offensive presence.
#3. Ville Leino
My biggest gripe with Ville is that he didn’t do for Detroit what he did for Philadelphia. In 2009 he put up 2 (YES 2!) points in the playoffs and in 2010 he put up 21! Yes, I understand he played more games in 2010 but do the math…0.29 points per game in 2009 compared to 1.10 points per game a year later. I’m not mad at him because he didn’t fit in with Detroit’s playing style and lets face it…not every player will excel on every team…look at Cleary. I am happy for Leino that he found a place that suits his playing style and I understand that Holland had cap reasons to get rid of him, but it just sucks to see a former Red Wing have such a great year the year after we traded him. At least have the decency to suck for a year or two after we get rid of you.
Not to beat a dead horse, but the officiating was complete shit. The missed calls, the phantom calls, the one sided 5-on-3′s, and the number of games lost because of the officials is just plain wrong. We’ve seen the videos, read the blog posts, and we all are pissed about it. I really don’t need to go into further detail.
#1: Chicago won
It sucked that Chicago won for several reasons. I can’t name them all, but for starters they are our Central Division rivals, their fans jumped on the bandwagon when they won more games than they lost, and I’ve had a change of heart…Blackhawk fans are <insert favorite expletive here>. Through many posts over at NOHS and on DFN I’ve slowly been convinced in the error of my ways regarding Blackhawk fans. I also hate the fact that Hossa won the cup…I wanted so much to see pictures of him with his head between his hands in disappointment. The only silver lining here is that the Blackhawks fans are so damn cocky that they think they are the new Western Conference symbol of excellence which all other teams will measure themselves against. This shows how ignorant a lot of their fans are (this happens when you’ve just started watching hockey) when you don’t understand the salary cap and that the Blackhawks next year will not be the Blackhawks of this year.
I’m working on 5 things that I loved about the playoffs so stay tuned and your comments are always welcomed.