4/28 WCSF Game 2: DETROIT 3, san jose 2
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what can go wrong when you sit back with a 2-0 lead in a game. For the second game in a row, the Sharks shock the Joe (Louis Arena) and the Red Wings by striking twice in the 1st, but find themselves unable to strike again, and this time, the Wings were able to fight back. Another solid game by the boys in teal, but the Wings were able to get just the right bounces, including a Henrik Zetterberg shot that deflected off the skate of Kyle McLaren, and Pavel Datsyuk finding himself in the right place at the right time to backhand the game winner past an outstretched Evgeni Nabokov.
It took just 36 seconds for the scoreboard to be touched, as a McLaren shot touched the stick of Jonathan Cheechoo , netting him his first goal of the playoffs (McLaren, Joe Thornton). A Dominik Hasek puck playing adventure led to the second goal, as a poor attempt by Hasek wound up on the stick of Milan Michalek, who fed a pass to Thornton , that was one-timed into the back of the empty net (See how it's done Teemu?) (Michalek). With just a couple minutes left, Zetterberg scored to bring the Wings within one, when a puck thrown at the net bounced off McLaren and past Nabokov.
The second period was a scoreless one, but the 3rd, unfortunately for the Teal, wasn't. A bad breakout attempt by the Sharks found the stick of Daniel Cleary, who brought the puck right in, and rifled it past Nabokov to tie the game at 2. With just a couple minutes left and the game tied at 2, extra time seemed to be on the horizon, until a hard crashing play by Pavel Datsyuk changed the score. (It should be noted at this time that I was asked by the Wings fans sitting behind me who I thought would score the eventual game winner, and upon mentioning my picks, I said that the goal was going to be of the garbage variety. As it turned out, I was right. Lucky me.) With 90 seconds left, a shot by former Shark Mikael Samuelsson was stopped by Nabokov, but, while the defense was out gambling at Greektown or Windsor or some other casino (or doing something else that wasn't standing in front of the net), Datsyuk slipped in front of the net to pick up the puck, and flip it over the flopped netminder, netting the go-ahead-goal, and the series tying win for the Red Wings. Nabokov made 19 saves in the losing effort.
All season long, it has amazed me how insecure hockey fans can be. At almost every venue I have been to, other than the Tank, my simple presence in my Sharks jersey garners some sort of reaction, usually of the attempted snide/funny/trash talk variety. If I bother you, show how little I mean to you by not giving me the time of day. Opening your mouth to let me hear the stupidity oozing from your face only makes me giggle, and if that is your ultimate plan, well then, mission accomplished. Besides, you're the dude wearing a red lugnut hat on your head, so the teasing seems a little hypocritical.
It's not a 2-0 lead, but the Sharks did what any road team should plan to do in the first two games of a series, and that's split the first two, swinging home ice advantage towards themselves, and forcing the home team to take one on the road in their building. And that brings us to Game 3. The third installment of this year's Sharks/Wings matchup comes on Monday, April 30th, from the Tank (7:00 pm). Back home, the Sharks can pick their matchups, as they have the last change, and also will have 17,496 individual human amplifiers causing audible trouble for the Winged Wheelers. If the Sharks can shake the cobwebs they got from slowing their game seen on Saturday, it should be a good one for those in attendance. One can expect the Wings to have some confidence to go along with their momentum, so if the Sharks can't control the play, it could be a long one for those very same people in attendance. Either way, it is the playoffs, so it should be a good one.
GO SHARKS (HAAAAA-SEKKK)
The giant Rally Al sitting out front of the Joe.
Al Sobotka, the man for whom Rally Al is named, is picking up an octopus. Boy, I want his job.
Oh, how cute. He's waving a smelly dead sea animal over his head. How... awesome?