But if the fans come to examine the house of their hockey team and the stench of losing has subsided after only one loss, they shall pronounce the house clean because the losing is over. To finish purifying the house, the home team must then take the Red Wings along with some sticks, the correct priestly uniforms and a properly penitent attitude. They then must slaughter the Wings, putting the puck into their net repeatedly until the first goaltender is removed and put on the bench. They must then, still wearing their holy garments, take their sticks and with unwavering remorse proceed to slaughter the Wings further, putting the puck into their net repeatedly until the second goaltender is reduced to tears. Then the Oilers must gather the tears and the blood (from the seven fights that they will have already won) and sprinkle some of this mixture on each of the nine face-off dots. This is how the house of a hockey team is purified: with sticks, holy garments, tears and blood of Red Wings and a repentant heart. After this the Red Wings may be released so that they can move on to another city. In this way atonement will be made for the stench of losing and the house will once again be clean.
Detroit Red Wings (4-4-2) @ Edmonton Oilers (6-5-1)
Rexall Place, 7:30 PM MDT
More analysis after the jump...
Visiting Team Scouting Report: Just to be clear off the hop, the Red Wings are a very good team. We all remember that Avalanche team that stomped on the Oilers a couple of nights ago right? The Red Wings outchanced that group 47-27 over two games. Sure they lost both games, but they were dominant for much of the game. The only reason they lost either game was goaltending. In the first game Chris Osgood lost his angle on the shooter who was breaking wide on the defender. What should have been a harmless shot found itself in the back of the net. In the second game Jimmy Howard lost his angle on a shooter who was rushing up the ice. The wrist shot came from above the faceoff circle and found its way in. In Derek's poll earlier today sample size and goaltending are destroying the other options and that is a fair assessment of this team. On defence and at forward they're still really, really good.
Christy Hammond at Winging It In Motown sends this along:
The Wings earned their first win on the road Tuesday night against the Vancouver Canucks. The victory gave them a 4-4-2 record and 10 points to kick off the season, which has been the worst start for Detroit since 2003. The losses haven't come because the Wings have played poorly, rather because they've had a hard time playing a complete 60 minutes and they've had some unlucky bounces. Star forward Pavel Datsyuk scored two goals in the win, but may miss tonight's game because of a foot injury he suffered from blocking a shot which is a tough break for Detroit.
Behind the Numbers:
- The Oilers are one of only five teams without a bench minor so far this season. How about that coaching!
- Shawn Horcoff leads the Oilers in total faceoffs taken with 259. The Red Wings leader is Valtteri Filppula with 161.
- The Red Wings are 6th in the league in shot differential with +4.6. If we could agree ahead of time to give Detroit double that (but no more!) I'd take it. The Oilers have fallen into a tie for 30th with -8.2.
- Ladislav Smid leads the Oilers in minor penalties so far this year with 6. Denis Grebeshkov and Zack Stortini are tied for second with 5. Former Oiler Kirk Maltby leads the Red Wings with 8.
- On the current roster, only Horcoff, Moreau, Staios, Hemsky and Pisani have played more games as an Oiler than Dan Cleary.
- Shawn Horcoff is currently three points behind Todd Marchant in points as an Oiler. We can only hope that he makes it by the end of this season.