BK’s Blog

Opinionated commentary on the world of sports.

Red Wings v. Penguins Game 3 Recap

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If you had told me that the Detroit Red Wings would play better defensively in game 3 than they did in games 1 and 2, I would have predicted a victory.  As it turns out, they did play better defensively.  But they didn’t win, and they allowed Pittsburgh a chance to tie up the series in Game 4 tomorrow.  What were the determining factors last night?

First, the officiating a major factor.  I could write a whole post on this alone.  Officiating has been brutal on the Wings in game 3 of the last 3 series.  Against Anaheim, the Wings had their game tying goal disallowed because the referee lost sight of the puck, which happened to be sitting out in the open in the goal crease.  Against Chicago, the Blackhawks were given 11 minutes of power play time in the first period and Niklas Kronwall was ejected from the game for a hit that should not have even gotten him a minor penalty.  Last night, the Penguins had six men on the ice for over twenty seconds with no penalty assessed. Additionally, Jonathan Ericsson was given a penalty for interference at a key point in the game while more egregious interference had been committed by the Pens all night long without being called.  On the ensuing power play, Pittsburgh was able to score what turned out to be the game-winning goal.

However, the officials alone were not the difference.  Chris Osgood has been glorious throughout the entire playoffs.  But last night, the second goal that he allowed should have been stopped.  It was a simple shot and he was not screened.  Had Osgood made that save, we could be talking about a Wings victory.

Last night, for the first time, the absence of Pavel Datsyuk could have affected the outcome of the game.  In the third period, when the Wings were trailing by a goal, his ability to create chances in the offensive zone probably would have lead to at least a couple of scoring chances.  A healthy Pavel would have been quite a boost.

Had even one of these three factors had been different, I think the Red Wings would have prevailed.  That being said, it was still a decently entertaining hockey game.  In the last two series, the Wings have bounced back from tough game 3 loses to trounce their opponents in game 4.  Will the same thing happen tomorrow night?  Stay tuned.


Written by bckersey

June 3, 2009 at 5:52 pm

Posted in Red Wings

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