10/7/11: Ott 3 @ Det 5
The Wings looked pretty good throughout. The Third Period was a throw away as they seemed to loose a bit of jump, but Ottawa looked terrible across the board. I'm starting to second guess my placing of them 29th in the league, they really looked that bad. I can't say we had any players stand out in a bad way, we were firing on all cylinders until we let off the gas but still held on for a 5-3 win. We did have some guys stand out in positive ways.
1. Corey Emmerton - He was flying, making plays, forechecking hard and putting up points. If he can keep this up throughout the season he will definitely surprise a lot of people, including myself. I had him pegged as Waiver bait once Mursak returned.
2. Jakub Kindl - I really like this kid. I've been saying it since last season and I'll continue saying it. He looks to have top 4 potential and makes some really smart plays. A lot of people wish he would use his body a bit more and I can't disagree but I also don't think it's necessary for him to break out and be a positive contributor. Keep an eye on this guy.
3. Todd Bertuzzi - Big Bert had some fired under him from the drop of the puck. He kicked off with the first goal of the 2011-12 seasons and was a force all over the ice. This 3rd line of Abdelkader - Helm - Bertuzzi will be fun to watch throughout the season.
10/8/11: Det 3 @ Col 0
I missed the first ten minutes of the game, which from what I've heard weren't exactly the best 10 minutes the Wings have played. I thought they looked alright and by time the 3rd hit the Wings took over the game completely. Conklin was a brick wall, not letting anything get by, but I think the overall team defense has improved from last season as well. It was a good night to play spoiler as the Avalanche, who seems to still grasp on to the threads of the rivalry, were hanging number 21 to the rafters in honor of Peter Forseberg.
1. Ty Conklin - This was a no-brainer. Two games into the season and we already have our first shut-out. He has picked up where he left off from the 09-10 season and looks fantastic playing the puck. I thought Conks was rock-solid throughout the preseason and hopefully gives Howard a scare for the starting job, if for no other reason then to light a fire under his ass.
2. Johan Franzen - A solid outing for the sniper. Franzen showed flashes of his quick hands and let a blazing fast shot fly top shelf on Varlamov. Coverage fell apart for Colorado in the D-zone on the play leaving Franzen to be completely unchallenged and you can't leave a guy free with a shot like that.
3. Jonathan Ericsson - What! Really? Yes. I thought Big E had himself a fantastic game. Being one of his biggest critics, that means a lot from me. I thought his stick was positioned perfectly and he threw around his weight along on the boards. A rare, solid night for the youngster.
Odd note: The Wings have shut out there opponents in 5 out of 6 periods thus far.
Up Next: Thursday against Vancouver