The old guard is slowly disappearing.
Those reliable Detroit
Red Wings, the guys that have been around seemingly forever, are going
out one by one. Kirk Maltby, who has been a Wing since 1996, had
season-ending shoulder surgery today and it might be the end of his
career with Detroit..
“There was more damage to the
shoulder than the doctor originally
anticipated,” general manager Ken Holland said. “The wear and tear on
the shoulder — there were some chips floating around. The doctor told
me he had to do something called a microfracture. There was way more
wear and tear, and given the surgery, in all likelihood, it’ll be at
least 12 weeks before Kirk can start to push weights. So right now,
looks like he’s out for the season.”
Maltby will be an unrestricted free agent this
summer and it’s doubtful that a 37 year old can recover from
microfracture surgery in time to be ready for next season, although it’s
certainly possible. I haven’t been able to find out much about the
surgery on the shoulder; you normally hear about the microfracture being
done on the knee. Basically, the surgery creates fractures (hence the
name) in the bones, which eventually creates new cartilage. Recovery
from the surgery generally takes four months or so.
time with Detroit most likely over, that leaves Nicklas Lidstrom and
Kris Draper as the final remnants of the great Red Wings teams of the
1990’s. Chris Osgood is still there as well but left and came back, so
he doesn’t count.
In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.
For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.
Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.
Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.
They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.
Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.
Taking three games to score your first NHL goal isn’t a big deal, unless you’re someone like Connor McDavid.
The mega-hyped wunderkind must feel relieved to finally find the net, as he tied tonight’s Edmonton Oilers – Dallas Stars skirmish with a 2-2 deflection goal, which you can watch above this post’s headline.
To no surprise, there were plenty of reactions, including Pierre LeBrun’s tweet (which inspired part of this headline).
Of course, there were the inevitable Wayne Gretzky comparisons:
Interesting thing you might not consider: Stars fans will have to stomach this one even more frequently than that time Patrik Stefan biffed that empty-netter (also against the Oilers):
McDavid may have also delivered his first questionable check, too: