Guest post by Franklin Steele:
I'm not a super-picky fan of the Detroit Red Wings. A victory is a victory, and points are points. That doesn't mean there aren't a few things I'd really like to see happen tonight against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
For starters, I want to see another Jordin Tootoo fight. I don't like to make guarantees or predictions that I can't keep, so I guarantee you that he ends up fighting Jared Boll or Derek Dorsett.
He's scrapped with them both before, and the Wings always seem energized after he throws the gloves.
I'd also really like to see him out on the ice more. Tootoo seems to make a little something happen every single time he is out on the ice, and he deserves more than seven or eight minutes of ice time.
Unless, of course, Babcock is satisfied utilizing Dan Cleary for 16 minutes a game like usual. Last night I realized I hadn't heard Cleary's name a single time since the beginning of the season. He has literally done nothing with his ice time.
Hit the jump for more:
Get Tootoo out there, and maybe even line him up with Abdelkader… of course, that would then give Detroit a physical presence-type line, and we just can't have that. Hockey Gods forbid Detroit have a physical presence type line.
Grind Line rest in peace. Moving on…
I can't think of any reason besides draft position that Kindl should be out there instead of Brian Lashoff. It feels nitpicky to harp on a "depth defender" spot, but Detroit's blueline hasn't exactly been rock solid so far.
Lashoff was steady and Kindl kind of drives me bonkers. And that has nothing to do with the guys that the Wings passed on to select him……. OK, so I am a bit of a grudge holder, but Lashoff has just been better. Give the kid a look because Kindl just isn't getting it done.
Columbus has one of the lamest power plays in the NHL, and if the Wings give up 3 power play goals I'm going to leap off of a metaphoric bridge. Their PK is sitting at 71% right now, and I don't need to tell you how awful that is.
At the very least, stay out of the penalty box. I feel like Detroit has spent maybe six minutes playing five-on-five hockey through their collective first periods. It's impossible to get a good start when you start the parade to the box within ten seconds of puck drop.
How tired is Jim Howard at this point? We'll find out tonight since he is apparently getting the start.
That's all for now. Enjoy the Game. Go Wings.