Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Will the real Chris Osgood please stand up?

Is Chris Osgood back? It's too early to tell, and frankly, it's too early in the morning to be writing when I should be finishing homework. But I can't help asking myself this question: Did the 10-day really layoff help? Is the Ozzie of yesteryear really shining through the garbage heap of goals and "I swear I'm turning it around" quotes?

He sure looked like it tonight.

The Red Wings manhandled the Blues 5-0 earlier this evening and Osgood was stellar. And I don't mean he made a few saves, got out of his own way and won like Osgood usually wins. I mean he made big saves on the penalty kill, stopped a few odd-man rushes and stole a couple scoring opportunities to grab his first shutout of the season.

Mind you, this was against the St. Louis Blues, but I liked what I saw. It doesn't mean I'm ready to toss aside all I've said about Conklin and jump right on the Ozzie bandwagon again. But it needs to be acknowledged because whoever ends up between the pipes for the playoffs will be the guy I support. I put my faith in Uncle Mike.

Since his time off with goalie coach Jim Bedard, Osgood has started two games and allowed 1 goal. That's like...five goals below average! I hope it continues.

And yes, I have decided to completely omit the *gulp* EIGHT to ZERO loss to Nashville on Saturday from his resume and Conklin's because a) I was a few beers deep when I saw the box score on ESPN News and assumed it was a typo, b) I didn't watch a second of the game and therefore have no problem erasing it completely from my memory and c) I was in San Diego for the weekend drinking at a wonderful hotel bar where they were kind enough to skimp on the idenfitication process and I had no reason to think about hockey while sipping sweetness in sunny California.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, I have left out the 8-0 mushroom cloud of apocalyptic shame because the Red Wings proved tonight that the game was an aberration. It was an embarrassment; there's no questioning that. But the team was hungry, angry, and ready to knock around some Blues. They proved to everyone in the league that Saturday's game was a typo; it was an anamoly. I was very happy to see that. Go Wings.

More on San Diego will come in the next couple days...I'm working on a longer piece for my feature writing class and I figured I would just post that here when it's finished. I'm sure you can tell from the previous couple paragraphs that I had a lot of fun but I can also assure you I learned a lot about gin and tonics journalism in the sun lounging by the pool conference sessions. Don't judge me.

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