Detroit Red Wings
Earlier tonight, the Detroit Red Wings clinched the Central Division title by defeating Minnesota Wild 4-2. This year is the 20th consecutive year the Red Wings have gone to the playoffs. Today is also the 9th time in the last 10 seasons that the Wings have won the Central Division.
Statistical Breakdown: http://scores.espn.go.com/nhl/boxscore?gameId=310403005
Wings are playing at Tampa.
This is the first regular season game between the Wings and the StevieY-led Lightning. Both teams are first place in their respective divisions.
Wings are up 1-0 on a Dan Cleary goal, midway through the first, and have killed off three consecutive minors.
TSN reporting (along with an explosion of Twitters) that the Red Wings and free agent goalie Evgeni Nakokov are close to terms on a deal.
However, there is a big snag to this...he would have to clear wavers. I have a hard time believeing he would make it all the way through (Tampa Bay comes to mind as someone in need of a goalie).
For sake of argument lets say it does go through, is this the end of Chris Osgood's career or does he try to get to another team? Do you think it will improve Jimmy Howard's play or will Nabokov actually challenge for the starting role in the playoffs? I really hope not because while he has been a good goalie in the regular season, he is complete dog shit in the playoffs (or Olympics) so I do not want him anywhere near the ice for the Wings in the playoffs.
EDIT: A couple of interesting tweets from Bob McKenzie at TSN
- My guess, and it's only that, is DET and Nabokov have a deal they can live with, but remains to be seen whether contract is legal per CBA
- Guessing there is something in deal to "discourage" other teams from claiming Nabby on waivers, but will it fly with NHL? Just a guess tho.
EDIT 2: From TSN, also being spread around the internet
According to those sources If completed, Nabokov will receive $570,000 for the remainder of the year, which pro-rated works out to roughly $250,000 on the Red Wings cap.
It is very hard to believe, for that money and cap hit, he will make it through wavers to the Wings.
Nick Lidstrom and Eric Staal are going to be the captains for the NHL all-star game. I'm glad the NHL got this one right and really glad they didn't go with Crosby and Ovechkin.
When an article starts like this, it just has to make your day:
"DETROIT — Welcome to Detroit, where the forecast, as always, is muggy, with a chance of murder.
When you’re trying to breathe a little life back into your year, this is not the place to visit. And not just because they use more white chalk at crime scenes than they ever did in the schools."
Wow! Thanks Robert Tychowski of the Edmonton Sun for that upbeat start.
According to the Free Press*, the Detroit Red Wings will announce the signing of Mike Modano Thursday. This adds third line depth with Jiri Hudler and the Red Wings become a very serious threat (more so than before) in the West. I really like their chances and my desire for hockey season just went up ten fold.
*Yeah the freep sucks, but they are the only outlet with the story at the moment so I am linking it.