09 March 2010

The 'S' Word: No, not the one used gratuitously on this blog

There's been lots of talk about "Statement Games" recently. Most specifically, many considered the game on Sunday to be one of those games in which the Wings could make a statement. This has occurred throughout the season, about every time the Wings take on one of the league leaders. Games against the Sharks and Hawks specifically are touted as games in which the Wings may make the statement that they are still the team to fear in the West.

Well, that may be. However, tonight, a game against a team currently sitting in the 9 spot, is the game where a true statement may be made. Sure, handling a game against one of the current powerhouses may send a statement that we can hang with anyone, regardless of the turmoils we suffer throughout the season.
  • But tonight is different.
Tonight we face off against Calgary. This is a team currently sitting in the 9th Playoff spot, one point behind Detroit. A team that has struggled throughout the season, even without Larry Aurie reaching from out of the sky to bitch-slap their entire roster.  A team that lost Vesa Toskala hot-potato.
  • A team that needs every point they can get.
I submit to you, dear readers, that this is the game where the Wings must make a statement. This game that follows two Wings' victories against major opponents. The Chicago game was a "statement game" in that a win would send a message to the league that Detroit hasn't gone anywhere yet. However, had we lost, there wouldn't be much of a statement attached. Well, other than the "I like the way we played, the pucks just didn't bounce our way tonight" standard fare from the post-game.

Tonight? Tonight's game will send a statement, no matter the outcome.

For a loss:
  • Hi. Nice to meet you. We're the 2009-2010 Red Wings. I know, you probably don't recognize us. For the last 18 years or so we sported a different look. You probably have a hard time seeing that it's us without the fire coming from our eyes, or the smoke from our ears. We also used to rock a bunch of bling. Oh, what a silly phase. We were so into all of those accessories. President's Trophies, Campbell Trophies, division banners - and who could forget those silly 35 pound silver chalices? No longer, friends. We are a kinder, more gentle Red Wings. We want to be your friend. Having trouble making the playoffs? Here, take our seat. No, really, it's no inconvenience. We've been riding this train for the last 18 years. What's one more? We would have won tonight. We would have rose to the occasion, and shown everyone in the league that we're here to stay. But good Bear Jesus, that would have been a lot of work. And gee, we're tired. Plus, honestly, we just don't care that much. Have fun guys, we're off to Carl's Golfland to suit up for the real season.

On the other hand, for a win:
  • Oh. I'm sorry. You thought we were going to miss the playoffs? You got all excited to see the NHL's reigning dynasty crumble at the hands of the Visigoths? Yeah. I just made a "fall of Rome" reference.  What the hell are you going to do about it? Shut down the league for a year to find a way to get me to stop? Been there. Done that. How'd that work out for ya? So slow down there professor. We aren't going anywhere just yet. Yeah... it's been a while since we've had three victories in a row. Though, it's also been a while since Grand Rapids had a functional team, because they were all wearing Red and White. So just relax. You can cancel your foxtrot lessons, you aren't dancing on the grave of this dynasty anytime soon.

    We might be from Detroit, but we're about to go all Toyota on this league...

    ...Wait for it...

    ...Wait for it...

    There's. No. Fucking. Stopping us.
Yeah, I know. It's a little much. A win or loss tonight does not determine, at least mathematically, whether the Wings make it to the playoffs. Too many variables exist to really make it dispositive of whether we could contend for a twelfth. But all hyperbole aside, the Wings have the choice tonight to drop to the 9th spot, or potentially take the 7th. A choice between chasing the last playoff seed in the conference, or stringing together some strong performances and putting 5 and 6 in our sights. It's up to them to make that choice.

Well, perhaps "with a little help from my friends":

Oh man. An ancient Rome joke AND a Joe Cocker/Late-80's-Early-90's television show joke in one post!? You're welcome.

Our Lady of Wonder, pray for us.

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