Game 6 in Edmonton, starts at 2000h Eastern - not 2200 like I thought. Grrr.
Missed the first 15 minutes of the first period.
Yzerman's back, good news for the Wings I guess.
If Pronger was running a pick interference on the PP late first, then Lidstrom definitely was. Wings fans who still insist that the Wings aren't getting the benefit of the calls in this series need to give their heads a shake. Pronger's first penalty minutes of the series. Spacek missed pretty badly just before that; why oh why is he still on the point on the first PP?
Bergeron had a pretty good hit earlier, maybe he's refound his game.
Watched Rem Murray get interviewed during the first intermission: either he's the first guy I've ever seen - ever - shivering during an interview, or else his meds aren't bringing him back all the way. The poor bastard was just twitching through the whole thing. I don't know if it's a good thing that CBC are putting him on (feel good story) or just terrible (hey kids, watch the twitchy man). Maybe a bit of both.
Stoll made a shot block in the 2nd on the first DET PP - right off the ankle - and then Holmstrom ran Roli to neutralize the penalty. Who does he think he is - Ryan Smyth?
Not happy at all with Spacek this game so far - along with his missed net, he's been a bit soft and he's made some poor passing decisions. Hopefully he improves - the Oilers can't afford 3 dmen who regularly make suicide passes or blind passes up the middle.
Staios and Shanahan have a lot to say to each other after scrums around Roloson, wonder if they have something going. Looks like it's Smith / Pronger, Bergeron / Staios, and Spacek / Tarnstrom this period.
Oh jeez, nasty nasty giveaway by an Oiler with a 2x jersey number - either Dvorak or Smith, I think - behind the net to give Roloson a chance to look like a goaltending god. Past games I've said Detroit doesn't seem to want it as much - now it looks like the Oilers are determined to carry the series to 7 games. Jason Smith - holy crapola.
Yzerman puts one off the post, then gets another chance and almost a third. The guy's playing on one knee and has hip problems. What's Tarnstrom thinking?
Roloson didn't have much chance on Lang's PP goal - while I figured Detroit would win the game, I didn't expect them to pitch a shutout. The way the Oilers are playing right now, Legace will have one of the easiest SOs of his career.
Hemsky went in on a 2 on 1 with Samsonov - why oh why oh why does he always try to cut into the middle and then cough the puck up?
Shanhan just clobbered Roloson with about 3m left in the second: with the score 2-0, some Oiler - anybody - Moreau, Smith, Staios - needs to make him pay for that. Give him a facewash, rub him out extra-hard against the boards, anything. If they can't get him, get Zetterberg or Lang, he's killing them anyway. Not hit him to injure or anything, mind, just let them know that while Holmstrom's game is in the crease, so is Smyth's, and one per team is enough. Shanahan didn't try very hard to get out of Roloson's way, now that I've seen the replay. He didn't make a deliberate attempt to run Roloson, but he didn't try at all to avoid him.
Looks like MacT might be mixing the lines up a bit - Horcoff between Samsonov and Pisani. Dvorak with Murray and Moreau is the usual 4th line for these playoffs.
Edmonton's up 3 games to 2, the second period they got outshot 17-3. Terrible, just terrible. If Edmonton can't take this game, they're in trouble. JR said if Yzerman came back this game, he figured they'd win it - I couldn't disagree, and right now, it's looking like that was a good bet.
Just saw the replay of Zetterberg's goal. That is precisely what Samsonov and Hemsky should be doing. They have the talent, undeniably. Do they have the will? Hemsky can, sometimes. I've seen little indication that Sammy does.
Winchester went hard to the net early in the third: about damn time somebody did that. He had a pretty decent chance along with Smyth just before that, and then Smyth drew a penalty from Williams, who thought it was the old NHL for a while there. Stupid play by the Wings there. Edmonton has to do well here. Spacek on the point - which one will we get? Doesn't matter, Pisani banged it home. Doesn't matter that the Oilers were getting the shit kicked out of them the first two periods - the score's 2-1 now, and that's what matters. Next goal wins, I think. Unless there's no goal, of course. Then Detroit wins. Duh.
Hm, MacT follows up the PP goal with Murray / Moreau / Dvorak. Not sure that's the best play, but ok. I think I would have been tempted to put Moreau on the wing with Pisani and Peca... well, Peca, Torres, and Pisani went out, and Peca got driven into Legace - that makes up for Shanny, that's for sure. Peca sure got his elbow up on Lebda though, kind of nasty. Legace looks a bit upset after that, not sure if it was the hit or the chanting afterwards, or if I was just seeing things.
Samsonov just ran Chelios - wow. Didn't do much damage, but he really had at him. If he'd played like that the whole series, he'd have 3 or 4 goals by now.
How about Pisani? By all accounts he's been Da Man this regular season, now when the Oilers most need it, he gets a banger on the PP and a nifty little deke on Legace for the tying goal. What a beautiful goal - the Wings are in some serious trouble now. I have to admit, 2003-04 I was all over Pisani for the first half of the season, then I warmed to him a bit, this season I haven't seen much but I kinda liked what I saw... this playoffs, I'm thinking the Oilers don't need to worry about whether Dvorak's their 2nd line RW or not, because Pisani's the guy.
Moreau takes a tough penalty off some careless stickwork, the Oilers have been ok on the PK (wow, Smith just levelled Holmstrom behind the net) so they should be ok. I like what I'm seeing from Peca too - arguing with McGeough he had that set to his jaw. He's been mean, he's hitting, he's driving... don't know if it makes up for him basically only earning a quarter of his salary this regular season, but damn if he isn't a great player these playoffs. Not a monster like Pronger, not a game-breaker like Roloson's been, but he's worth every penny this playoffs, more than you can say for poor Samsonov or Spacek. Some doubt is seeded in my mind about my previous next goal wins statement, but I still think the Oilers can pull this one out. Hopefully they have no doubt.
Curious that MacT came back out with Hemsky / Samsonov / Stoll. I'd think you'd want an energy line out there, Peca's line maybe - unless they're still tired from the PK. Short shift then Horcoff's line, so that's ok.
Do the Wings have to kill Ryan Smyth before they get a penalty? He got chopped down behind the net by Kronwall, before finally drawing an interference in front of it off Cleary. Another key PP for the Oilers - score here and they're right back in it. Miss, and they're in some hurt - but at least not as much as they were 15 minutes of play ago.
Spacek's ok on the PP as long as he just passes to Pronger at the other point or Stoll at the opposite half-boards. (Just as long as he avoids coughing it up and giving up a 2 on 1 the other way.) Jeez, Bergeron and Tarnstrom playing the points on the second unit with Samsonov and Hemsky - that's a shorthander waiting to happen. But miracle of miracles, Sammy and Hemmer actually stuck it out in front of the net and it went in, despite Legace's late attempt to cover it up. Hopefully that one counts - if not it's a game-breaker, maybe the series. It looks like if it went off Hemsky's skate, it's because he was shoved, but we'll see.
The poor CBC guys trying to fill in the empty air - why don't they tell their amusing little anecdotes about talking to Stevey Y or ol Chris "Orbs" now? It's all good, the goal counted. Hrm. I really hope we're not headed for 2OT again. Good to see Hemsky finally get his first of the playoffs, and great knockdown by Horcoff just before. Good Wings chance with about 3 minutes left - Roloson covered it up, and Steve Yzerman was right on the doorstep. Nice play by the old man - Roli didn't give up the rebound, but if he had Yzerman would have been right in the right spot.
Watching Samsonov and Hemsky weave their magic just now, for Hemsky's beautiful 4-3 goal: magic. Just beauty magic. They took their time waking up, but... damn. 3 Wings go to Hemsky, the puck goes to Samsonov and *all* the Wings leave Hemksy alone then a beauty pass back, and it was in the net. Very unusual to see the Wings collapse like that - it's going to be a wild last minute.
Ethan Moreau made a monster block with about 15 seconds left - hope he's ok. The Oilers seem to be making a habit of that. He didn't even get his head turned away, good thing it hit him down low.
Like the CBC guys, I was surprised not to see Yzerman on the ice for the last faceoff - wow.
And now, I'm extremely pleased to admit that I was wrong about the final series score. At least I called the next goal wins earlier. Yzerman made right for the Oilers bench to talk to Huddy and MacT, both guys against whom he's played - this could be it for him, I think. Too bad he has to maybe go out on a losing note, but can't say that I'm too broken up over that.
So Colorado won last night to eliminate the Stars, Edmonton wins, and if Calgary wins we'll see the Battle of Alberta return in round 2. That'd be what, the first playoff BoA since the late 80s? That'll be something to see.