Back from watching the Plymouth Whalers drop a 2-0 decision to the Kitchener Rangers in Game Six of their playoff series, I'll finally post my thoughts on the Red Wings' 4-3 OT win today in Nashville...
First off, it took a slow-mo replay from above the crease to show what happened on TV. Did the eagle-eyed ref actually see it happen or did he call a phantom penalty and luck out that one was actually there. If he did see it, did he miss Rinne's punch to the back of Holmstrom's head a second earlier?
Right call but frustrating.
Abdelkader in General
What an afternoon for Justin Abdelkader. I admit to a bit of a hometown bias towards him but that doesn't have to apply this time. Five hits, two goals... He was all over the place. And his hit on Martin Erat was *not* boarding. Erat got away with worse against Abdelkader two weeks ago - not that what Erat did was legal then, just allowed. Hooray for consistency.
Bertuzzi vs. O'Brien
Where did Todd Bertuzzi come from? Something set him off today, I'm not sure I want to see that every game but today it was nice. Bertuzzi smacked Shane O'Brien around once and O'Brien went for the ill-timed rematch and got beat down again. That second fight was a major turning point. I can't believe O'Brien did that when a win for him would mean nothing but a win for Bertuzzi would fire the Red Wings up.
Great physical effort from the Wings. Great mental resilience after going down 3-0. It was a playoff-style win and they need some of those down the stretch here.
The Whalers had a chance to finish off the Rangers tonight and failed pretty miserably. Like I have the tendency to complain about with the Wings, the Whalers were just not getting any second chances around the Kitchener net. It was a pretty physical game, with the Rangers seeming to win most of those battles. Whalers need to get it together to avoid losing a series they were up 3-1 in.
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