Game #3: Red Wings 4, Avalanche 5
One: Kirk Maltby. Yep, the guy didn't play in this game. But for any longtime Red Wings fan, you know he deserves some recognition on the night he finally hangs up his skates. He retired this afternoon to take a scouting job with the team instead of play another year mostly in the minors. It's too bad, but he's just not good enough to make the roster anymore. The grinders made in his image are younger, faster, better. But that doesn't mean we don't all remember that Sports Illustrated cover in 1997, that back-and-forth goal with Joey Kocur against Philly in those '97 Finals, or the countless penalties he killed. It's sad to see him retire, but it was time. Thanks for everything, Malts. You were awesome.
Two: Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg. These guys are fucking magic together. Prepare for me to slobber over them way too many times this season. Whenever they're on the ice I'm ready for a goal. Their beauty in the second period was too easy. There's no other duo in the NHL that is as in sync as the Euro Twins. If Hank wasn't married to ungodly gorgeous Emma Andersson and Dats wasn't with his wife, whoever she is, I swear these two would be as good together as George and Mary Bailey.
Three: Doug Janik. Ugh. Please go away. Damn you, Rafalski's knee. I don't know if I can stand extended time with this guy on the ice. It's like Lilja, but worse.
Next up: Red Wings at Stars, Oct. 14 at 8:30 p.m. This game is on NHL Network, which makes me happy because that makes two nights this week Red Wing nights.
On a side note, I love watching a sport that gets over in two and a half hours with limited commercials. Not any of this all-afternoon football junk or forever-and-a-day playoff baseball. Exactly why hockey is my favorite.