Editor's Note: To get a sense of the quality of person that Malik is take a look at how he dared to denigrate the memory of Teeder Kennedy when he passed away earlier this year. Despite everyone, including Gordie Howe himself, clearing Kennedy of any blame on the play that led to his brain injury Malik (who notes Howe's feelings in his post!) states that Kennedy hit Howe from behind. No wonder The Pensblog hates the tool.
Friend of the site Godd Till linked me to a great post written by George Malik: "Wings lose while following familiar script". In this post George Malik cries like a Hurricanes fan that Toronto won and that we're happy with Gustavsson. It's somewhat understandable, the last time Detroit beat the Leafs it was with Andrew Raycroft in net. In 2006. Ouch.
Comeback is thwarted by firing more shots wide and into opposing team's players (21 wide and 17 blocked for a total of 38 shots on Saturday, with 36 shots actually hitting the net) than opposing goaltender.
Toronto's defense blocks a lot of shots. Toronto's defense was excellent in their own end last night. Personally, I wouldn't call scoring a goal to make it 3-1 in the third a "comeback".
because the Maple Leafs will probably be golfing in April, the Wings also managed to help Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson win what was probably his most meaningful game of the regular season
George Malik knows so much about which teams won't make the playoffs based on poor play in October because he's a Red Wings fan and watched them only qualify for the playoffs twice between 1967 and 1983. When the Leafs are that bad feel free to come back and make fun of us Malik.
Maybe if every sports writer in Toronto, a town full of sportswriters who seem to hate: the Leafs, Leafs fans, and Leafs success in that order, all say that Gustavsson looks great, Borje Salming says he looks great and then Lidstrom says Gustavsson looks great that means something. If every time Gustavsson plays he make the Red Wings look like a beer league team, well then just maybe Gustavsson's a decent goalie.
Look I'm all for dissenting opinions here but when you're the lone voice saying Gustavsson isn't good and he stops the Red Wings 35 times on 36 attempts (7 on the penalty kill, 3 by Datsyuk, 7 by Zetterberg) you look like a fucking clown.
The Toronto Star's recap provides a game narrative while talking about the Leafs' other version of Hockey Jesus (number 3, with #2 being "The Monster" and #1 being Sidney Crosby), a.k.a. Phil Kessel...
On behalf of Toronto fans we apologize for being excited to watch our best player. We'll work harder to ensure that no one is excited about Phil Kessel so that no one cheers so that the Red Wings can pretend they're at home playing in front of a half empty stadium.
Kevin McGran spoke to Kessel about his Herculean feats...
Phil Kessel definitely thought his goal was amazing, here's the quote Mailk is referencing by Kessel in an attempt to belittle Kessel.
"It was just an instinct," said Kessel. "You never know if a guy is behind you. Maybe if I don't touch it, some guy hits it out of there. You've got to bury it. I'd want anyone else to bury it, too."
Seems like the kid has a big head about that goal alright. His excessive goal celebration of "slowly turning around and skating to the bench without even raising his arms" really showed how impressed Kessel was with his "herculean effort".
As the National Post's Michael Triakos played up the Leafs' status as Stanley Cup contenders (sarcasm alert)...
OH MAN THAT WAS SARCASM?
Gustavsson himself made a telling comment about the Wings' contentment with playing perimeter hockey:
This is classic annoying fan of a team with recent success syndrome. Malik is implying that the Red Wings lost because they played poorly and that Toronto is a bad team.
Toronto's not a bad team. The Leafs will probably finish behind Detroit in the points race when the dust settles on this season, but the Leafs will finish this season 1-0-0 against the Red Wings. They finished last year 1-0-0 against the Red Wings and they finished the year before that 1-0-0 against the Red Wings. I'm ok with that.