I have been lucky enough to live in the Detroit area since I was 5. Well I don't know how lucky I really am given the economy of the city the last 5 years but one thing is for sure, it has been great being a Red Wing fan.
Growing up there was definitely some down times. I remember my father getting calls from Mike Illitch himself back in the 80's practically begging my dad to buy season tickets. I remember the times when they would give a car away every home game in hopes of putting people in the stands to watch a dismal team. Nowadays we have been blessed with one of the best franchises in all of professional sports.
But I think times are a changing. I know it is only two games but something doesn't feel right. My biggest complaint to my wife who has the ugly job of hearing me complain is that this team did nothing in the off-season to shore up the defense which was clearly the weakest part of the team last year. When seeing Beauchy and Komisarek and other decent D men go to other teams I was worried that we would do nothing to improve the blue line and sadly they didn't. Pretty much it is the same defense we had last year for the regular season except that Ericsson will now replace Lilja. While I think the kid is going to be great I don't think it makes that big of a difference.
I understand that losing Hossa, Hudler, and Sammy put strains on our offense but we still have plenty of scoring threats on the team to maybe pull one decent deal for a D Man. Here is hoping we do that near the trade deadline.
I watched both games this weekend and for one thing, thank god hockey is back, I don't know how much longer I would be able to go without. They had flashes of brilliance but losing leads like that twice concerns me. It's just two games, that I know. I have no doubt that they will continue their playoff streak. I have no doubt they will be a top 4 seed come playoff team. But I am worried that it will be a much more stressful season than it needed to be. I don't believe that Bertuzzi and Williams bring enough offensive power to not only make up the loss of Hossa, Huds, and Sammy, but also not enough to cover the goals that will be scored against.
Maybe I am overreacting. Maybe Osgood will go back to his normal self this regular season. Maybe Howard is going to prove he is our future net minder. Maybe everything will be okay, just like it has for 18 years now. I really shouldn't doubt the team as they have never done me wrong in a loooooong time. But those two games were hard to watch as a Wings fan. We'll see how the rest of the season goes.