Detroit at San Jose (10/30/08)

Detroit played one of their arch rivals, the San Jose Sharks tonight. The Sharks are now coached by ex-Red Wing assistant coach Todd McClellan.  He accepted their offer just days after winning the Stanley Cup with Detroit. Ty Conklin was in net for The Red Wings and Evgeni Nabokov got the start for the Sharks.

In the first period the Red Wings did not look very good.  The Sharks dominated in the face off circle, puck possession, and shots on goal.  Conklin was again fantastic in net.  Lilja made a horrible turnover right in front of his own goal and Conklin made an amazing save.  I suspect Lilja will still spend the night in the doghouse and I’d say he deserves it.

In the opening seconds of the second period Hossa surprised Nabokov with a quick shot that beat him for a goal.  It was the Red Wings turn to be leading in a game in which they were being outplayed.

The Sharks got on the board in the second period as well.  Thornton gained control of the puck along the boards behind the net and he passed it to Marleau who was charging up the slot for the quick goal.  It was a great setup by Thornton.

Then the Sharks scored again.  There was a scrum around the net and they were all banging away at Conklin.  Apparently it was poked in by Jamie McGinn who was credited with his first goal in the NHL in just his second game.

Immediately after the goal Hossa was called for tripping so the Sharks got a power play on top of the to add insult to injury.  The Sharks scored again on the power play to make it three to one.  They beat Detroit to the puck after a dump in and centered for a quick shot and a seemingly easy goal.  The Sharks were just dominating and seemed to be out Red Winging the Red Wings.

The Sharks continued pouring it on in the third period.  It was another example of the Sharks dumping it in and then winning the battle for the puck and scoring a goal.  If you’re keeping score, that’s four in a row without an answering goal by the Red Wings.  Something tells me there’s some tough practices in the Red Wings’ future.

With 32 seconds left Detroit scored a very nice but meaningless goal.  It was a give and go between Kopecky and Rafalski that worked like a charm.  Rafalski got the goal.  It was a great quick passing play that they could have used a lot more of throughout the game.  After that Detroit pulled the goalie to try and climb back within one.  However, time expired with the Red Wings losing four to two.

Even though the Red Wings have been getting points there hasn’t been too much to like about the last several games.  The only bright spot is how well Hossa is playing and how well he’s gelling with his new line mates.  We’ve seen west coast slumps early in the season before for the Red Wings.  It’s not anything to worry about and I’m confident that Mike Babcock with have his team continually improving throughout the season.  The cup hangover will not be an excuse.

This 4-2 loss brings us to:
16 points

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