Seems like it's been a month since the Red Wings won a hockey game, doesn't it? Tonight is a great opportunity to get back to winning games, or at least trying to win them. So what are our chances? Let's take a look at the numbers and see who has the edge on paper.
Detroit GP 7 W 5 L 2 OT 0 GF 20 GA 18
San Jose GP 7 W4 L 3 OT 0 GF 21 GA 17
So San Jose has scored one more and given up one less, but they didn't play the Caps on the road and they didn't have Conklin in net for them. No real advantage there either way.
Detroit: Last two games were not played. Instead, Detroit allowed a local High School team to play for them. Sort of a charity thing. Wait, it was Washington and Columbus that let a High School team play? OMG...
San Jose: 3-1 win against Nashville.
Detroit: Pavel Datsyuk G 2 A 3 P 5 +/- -2
San Jose: Joe Thornton G 1 A 5 P 6 +/- 4
Datsyuk will likely play against Thornton most of the night, so they will end up canceling each other out. This means depth will play a major part in tonight's final score. This would also be a great time for Hank to score a couple. Advantage, good guys.
Detroit: Nick Lidstrom G 2 A 2 P 4 +/- 0
San Jose: Dan Boyle G 0 A 3 P 3 +/- 2
This was pointless to even bother looking into since we already knew Lidstrom was better. Just thought it would look good sitting there in the event that a Sharks fan stopped by to say hello.
Detroit: James Howard III GS 4 W 4 L 0 OT 0 GAA 1.72 SV% .933 SO 1
San Jose: Antti Niemi GS 4 W 3 L 1 OT 0 GAA 2.23 SV% .910 SO 0
Niemi has never been a very good goalie. The Blackhawks unbelievably stacked roster dragged his corpse kicking and screaming to a Stanley Cup. Teams who shoot low on him make him look amazing due to his giant pads. Seriously, his pads are the equivelant of a kid wearing tight pants and stuffing a bowling pin in his shorts to make himself looks better than he is. Teams who shoot high score goals. Howard, on the other hand, is a talented goalie who relies on skill and positioning to make saves. Advantage, Detroit.
With this one, who knows. In this case, I give Detroit the edge because we have the last change and that makes a world of difference when two great coaches face each other.
Okay, so I basically gave Detroit the edge on everything. Part of that is because I'm a homer, but the other part is because Detroit is actually a better team than San Jose. It is what it is. But I feel bad. Surely I can find something that San Jose does better than Detroit. I'd say they could always look to the last two playoff series, but after beating Detroit, the Sharks are 1-8. Good times, good times. Nope, going to have to dig further.
Detroit: 11 Stanley Cups
San Jose: 0 Stanley Cups
"But Twig! Detroit has been in the NHL longer!"
Detroit: 4 Stanley Cups since San Jose became a team
San Jose: Still 0
Detroit: Miss America
San Jose: SHARKBOY1420
I love how we specifically digs out his giant coloring book just to throw it against the wall. And the way he rips off the Cheechoo jersey only to reveal a Cheechoo shirt underneath.
Based on what I see on paper, Detroit has a slight edge in most cases, but has a major edge in desperation.
Prediction: 4-2 Red Wings with the fourth goal scored in the empty net.