McKenzie: Looking forward to Game 7 showdown in Detroit

Bob McKenzie
6/10/2009 12:49:37 AM
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I know the Red Wings lost the hockey game and I know that it was a night of the supporting cast - Jordan Staal and Tyler Kennedy for the Penguins, Kris Draper scoring the only goal for the Red Wings. But my goodness, everytime Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk were on the ice - and they're playing together now - these guys are like a human highlight reel. 

The plays these guys make in tight are impressive, as are the plays they make defensively to turn it into offence. These guys were unbelievable to watch all night - they had five of the 12 shots that were blocked by the Red Wings, they're terrific when they don't have the puck, they're magical to watch when they do, and it's going to be terrific to see a Game 7 showdown between the best of the Penguins and the best of the Red Wings.

Really, offensively on the night, you noticed Datsyuk and Zetterberg a lot more than you did Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin but as I said, the supporting cast ruled the day, and Pittsburgh's was a little better.

Pens Getting Defensive

Marc-Andre Fleury was not the busiest of the two goaltenders in Game 6 - not by any stretch. And there were even times when Fleury looked a little bit shaky, but in Grant Fuhr-style situational goaltending, when Dan Cleary got that breakaway in the third period with a chance to even the score, Fleury came up with the save of a lifetime. Speaking of saves of a lifetime, Rob Scuderi had an all-world third period. Scuderi the defensive defenceman blocked a shot in the slot and came up with a number of game-savers that really reversed things. In the final seconds of the hockey game, who was in there like a rugby half trying to keep that puck out of the net? Scuderi.

Every hockey game always comes down to these little moments where it can go the other way, and there were four of those in the third period, and Fleury took care of one of them and Scuderi took care of the other three.

More than Words

One thing that Brent Sutter didn't say at Tuesday's conference call was that he had no interest in coaching the Calgary Flames, or coaching again in the National Hockey League. He just said he didn't want to coach the New Jersey Devils any more for personal and family reasons.

At the end of the day, it is Devils president, CEO and general manager Lou Lamoriello who holds the cards. We can sit here and try to predict whether Lamoriello will or will not give permission for Sutter to seek work elsewhere but I'd be surprised if he didn't allow it.

And once you allow permission in the NHL for another team to talk to your guy, you basically surrender your rights to him. There's no compensation involved so it's either a goodwill gesture on the part of Lamoriello to allow Brent to hook up with his brother Darryl in Calgary or...he says no. In which case, Brent is perfectly content to stay in Red Deer and look after his ranch and look after his WHL franchise, the Red Deer Rebels.

Bob McKenzie


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