4\27 This (From the Freep) might put some perspective on the Wings' first round exit: "You build a team expecting all the pieces to be there, and they weren't. You know about the injuries. Now give Joe Sakic (Yzerman)a broken left ankle, Milan Hejduk(Shanahan) a broken left foot, Ray Bourque(Chelios) a broken left thumb, Jon Klemm(Gill) a broken foot and a grinder(McCarty) a bum right ankle. How does Colorado do against the Kings?" It has since been discovered that Steve Yzerman has a broken fibula and Todd Gill played the series with a broken foot. 4\25 Steve Yzerman warmed up but did not play and the Wings were eliminated 3-2 in OT. Scoring were Verbeek and McCarty. The biggest factor of this series was injuries to Yzerman and Shanahan who played one and two game respectfully, and Darren McCarty and Chris Chelios who played with bad injuries. Expect the usual Scotty Bowman rumors to start soon as well as speculation about off season trades. I'll keep you posted. 4\24 Rumors have Yzerman in and Shanahan out for Game 6 tonight. 4\22 The Kings played well and the Wings played lazy, with weak passes and several odd-man rushes allowed. The Kings won their third striaght 3-2. Scoring were Kozlov and Chelios. Kings lead 3-2, Game 6 is Monday. Brendan Shanahan made his return but had little impact and was obviously in a great deal of pain. 4\19 The Wings blew a 3-0 third period lead and lost 4-3 in OT. Scoring were Verbeek, Duchesne, and Kozlov. The series is tied at two and Game 5 is in Detroit on Saturday. 4\16 The Kings stole one from Detroit 2-1. Scoring was Lidstrom. It was a tight game and the Kings got a late one to break the tie. Game 4 is Wednesday, Wings lead 2-1. 4\15 Even without Yzerman and Shanahan, the Wings blew out L.A. 4-0. Scoring were Fedorov, Duchesne, and Kozlov(2). Chris Chelios played. It was Chris Osgood's 9th career playoff shutout. Wings lead 2-0. Next up: Game 3 in L.A. tonight. 4\14 Ken Wregget was recalled from Manitoba and Jason Williams from Cincinnati to bolster the Wings' depth. Chris Chelios may return as early as today. 4\12 The Wings won Game one easily, but the price was high. Steve Yzerman twisted an ankle and will miss the next two games. Brendan Shanahan blocked a shot with his foot and it broke. He's out indefinetly, but insists he'll return before the playoffs are done. Scoring were Shanny, Fedorov, Holmstrom, and Larionov. Game two is Saturday at the Joe. Steve Yzerman tied Gordie Howe for most (154) playoff games played in franchise history. 4\9 Detroit gets Los Angeles in Round One. Game 1 is Wednesday. 4\7 The Wings nearly blew a 4-0 lead in the third, but held on to win 4-3. Scoring were Dandenault, Kozlov, Shanahan, and Holmstrom. Next up: Round 1 Game 1. We won't know who the opponent will be until tomarrow. Detroit has however clinched home ice throughout the playoffs except a meeting with Colorado. The Wings also set a home unbeaten record with 19 straight (17-0-2). Detroit finishes with 111 points, the second-most in the franchise's 75 seasons. Only the 1995-96 Wings had more points, 131, the second-most in NHL history. Last year they finished with 108, then the second best all-time. 4\6 Atlanta never tested the Wings, who beat them 4-0. Manny Legace got the shutout. Scoring were Lapointe(2), Devereaux, and Kozlov. Detroit is now 16-0-2 in their last 18 at the Joe, tying a club record for home unbeaten streak set in 1932 and 1955 (13-0-5 each year.) A win Saturday versus the Avs would break the record, as well as give the Wings home ice throughout the playoffs(except against the Avs who won the President's trophy.) Maxim Kuznetsov got in his first NHL fight last night. It was against former Av's heavyweight Jeff Odgers. Max did quite well....Chris Chelios and Darren McCarty are both skating and should be back during the first round. 4\4 The Wings ran into another hot goalie, this time Ron Tugnutt. Wings lose in Columbus 2-1. Scoring was Lidstrom. Next up: Atlanta at the Joe on Thursday. From the Free Press:" Center Henrik Zetterberg, the Wings' seventh-round pick from the 1999 draft, has been named the Swedish Elite League's rookie of the year. He was tied for fourth in league scoring with 15 goals among 46 points in 47 games with Timraa. Goaltender Stefan Liv, a fourth-round selection from last year's draft, was runner-up. Because the SEL season starts earlier than the NHL, assistant general manager Jim Nill said the team did not plan to bring Zetterberg over for training camp this fall. "He's playing a great level of hockey, so we're happy with him being over there," Nill said. "Let's leave him alone and let him develop and when he's ready, let's bring him over. We think he needs at least one more year." Also from the Free Press:" COLUMBUS, Ohio -- There's no place else to go in the Western Conference. Nothing much to do, in fact, except wait for a playoff opponent to emerge from the scrum at the bottom half of the seedings. But since the Red Wings can't just wave off the final week's games, the best they can do is get them over with. And have fun along the way. The highlight of Tuesday night's meaningless 2-1 loss to the Blue Jackets came in the first period, during a break in play. While the song, "This Kiss," blared over the Nationwide Arena speakers, cameras fed shots to the Jumbotron of various couples in the stands, urging them to take a cue from the song's title. Then came a shot of Martin Lapointe and Brendan Shanahan, sitting side by side on the Wings' bench. Shanahan blushed and smiled. Neither player, however, made an advance. Then, out of the blue, Steve Yzerman came over and planted a kiss on Lapointe's cheek. "It's called courting a free agent," Yzerman said. Unless the Wings sign him to an extension, Lapointe becomes an unrestricted free agent July 1. When the kiss happened, the Wings looked like they were in the mood to rout the Blue Jackets. They battered Columbus goaltender Ron Tugnutt with 20 shots in the first period alone. "We shot everything," Lapointe said. As to the kiss, he just grinned and said, "Shanny's jealous." The Wings can afford to play loose and happy as their regular season winds down. They are securely entrenched as the second seed in the West, and Tuesday's loss was only their fifth in 30 games." 4\3 Colorado won last night and the Stars tied, so the top of the West looks like this: 1. Colorado 2. Detroit 3. Dallas 4. St.Louis There are 5 points seperating 5th from 9th with Edmonton, Vancouver, San Jose, L.A., and Phoenix the 5 teams looking for those 4 spots. It could be anybody by Sunday. 4\2 Steve Yzerman's OT goal gave the Wings a 2-1 win and the Central Division title. Detroit has 10 overtime wins, tops in the league. Also scoring was Kris Draper who's been hot in the last half dozen games. Detroit has a lock on the second seed and a long shot at first. They need to win their final three games and Colorado must go pointless in their last three. Consiquently, If the Wings go pointless and the Stars win out, the Wings drop to third and the Stars move to second. Next up: at Columbus Tuesday. Notes....Chris Osgood was slated to start yesterday but had a baby ealy Sunday and got little sleep....Nick Lidstrom got cut by a skate across the forehead Saturday at Philly. Ne got many stitches but returned minutes later....Ken Holland hit a deer on his way back from Cincinnati. He was uninjured, but had to stay the night in Bowling Green, Ohio.
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