So what did you think of #39 last night? Obviously, we knew he was going to replace Danny Cleary – but Jan Mursak didn’t seem out of place last night in a game where the kids of Denver made a lot Red Wings look out of place at times. Last night was a little un-nerving at times when the speedy, younger Avs trapped Detroit in their own zone. It was probably because Detroit was playing for the second night in a row. It was probably because Detroit was missing Datsyuk and Cleary. But Osgood stood on his cranium and the kids helped bail us out in the end.
Abdelkader, Helm, Miller, and Mursak – and of course, the ageless speedster, Kris Draper – provided energy for the team late in the game to keep them alive. Mursak proved that he is a fairly strong skater with decent foot speed and doesn’t shy away from playing the body.
He didn’t regisiter a shot on goal, nor did he manage to get a point. He did, however, find his name on the scoresheet for a tripping penalty that he took early in the second period.
My grade: B+
He hustled on the backcheck, he was feisty and the forecheck, and he DIDN’T score a goal, leading us to believe that he’s going to be the next rookie of the year only to have him completely flop before trading him to a Leastern Conference team for some Norwegian who never plays and then watch him go on a tear in the playoffs and almost win the Stanley Cup and the Conn Smythe…I’m looking at you, Ville.
Mursak’s only noticeable mistake, in my eyes, was taking that penalty. Other than that, this kid appears to have a future as a third line energy guy – and who knows what else after that.
By the way, Franzen used to wear number 39 before Hasek came back to Detroit…think about it.