I’m going with a friend to see them at the Tank tomorrow. My friend worried that she might not be able to fully appreciate the experience of a live hockey game, not understanding it and all. I didn’t even mention the significance of this particular opponent.
I also have not mentioned yet how the suspense is compounded by the fact that the Sharks will be playing with so many hands tied behind their backs in the form of injuries.
Officially, the Sharks are listing Wallin (lower body), Setoguchi (upper body) and Huskins (upper body) as day-to-day. Nichol is likely to return against the Red Wings. -Mark Emmons for Working the Corers
I was very reassured to see this tweet from Lady Stanley:
Wallin, sans stache, skated around pre-practice. No huskins, no sign of wingels.—
GJ Berg (@LadyStanley) November 29, 2010
It doesn’t mean Wallin will be there tomorrow but at least he isn’t in traction. Also the ‘stache is gone. His wife may consider it small compensation for getting himself banged up but I guess a guy does what he can.
So, what does it mean for me to see the Red Wings? I have not been yet so I guess I will find out what it means to be in the Tank when the Wings visit.
The Sharks and the Flyers had already faced the Blue Jackets. Both teams have displayed what they call “inconsistency” this season. They have been most “inconsistent” against teams presumed to belong in the lower ranks of the NHL. That some of these teams, like the Blue Jackets and the Habs, refuse to go where they “belong” escapes many a fan and perhaps some players too.
In any case, the Blue Jackets have clobbered their “betters” time and again this season, and not by being a prototypical hot team. They just score a little and then stop you from doing the same. It is a stealthy approach, hiding in plain sight.
I believed that the Red Wings would not be so “inconsistent” against the Blue Jackets. They do not seem very affected by rivalries or anything else that teams get all agitated about. They are very much the Alpha team, even if they didn’t make it to the Conference Finals last year. To fret about irrelevancies is a waste of energy, and the Red Wings are very efficient.
You could chalk it up to efficiency that the Blue Jackets scored first. The Red Wings may not have been fully cognizant of what the Blue Jackets do, or how well they do it, after they score.
It took them almost ten minutes of play to respond, but they did so with authority: twice in a few seconds.
Then they tested the Blue Jacket penalty kill. They threw a lot of pucks at Mason, as if to remind the Blue Jackets that the Red Wings can play offense better than the Blue Jackets can play defense.
The Wings scored again to start off the third period, perhaps to set the tone. The Blue Jackets (immune to the aura of royalty) did not get the message and scored again. They needed a sixth skater to do it, but the insult could not go unanswered. The audacity! An empty netter put the Jackets to bed.
The Red Wings are mere mortals, subject to the same foibles as any other team. They may suffer bouts of over confidence. They get over it, and quickly. To underestimate them is the height of folly. Fans of other teams might call them old or Swedish but everyone knows they are predictably formidable. If you know your hockey, you may well be dazed by the aura of royalty.
I think Sharks fans like seeing the Sharks play the Red Wings because they know the Sharks will bring their best game to the party. I am not sure how best that will be tomorrow but it will be interesting.
What does any of this have to do with the age of Aquarius? Of all the rosters I have looked over, I have never seen so many Aquarians on one team, or so many of a single sign either: Holmstrom, Bertuzzi, Helm, Miller, Kindl and MacDonald.
Aquarians are marked by “an uncanny ability to see both sides of an argument without prejudice, making them excellent problem-solvers. The Aquarian can see a world of possibilities even when there appears to be none.”
Other notable Aquarians that come to mind are Dany Heatley and Jaromir Jagr.
I found it curious.