So I’m watching the third period of Game 1 last night, Detroit up 3-1 with about six minutes left, and Pierre McGuire is surprised that MIke Babcock is giving his fourth line major minutes, and he expresses it to Eddie Olczyk (who is not surprised), and he carries the theme into a post-game interview with one of the fourth-liners.
And I guess that’s what happens when you put an extraneous color analyst into a role where he feels he has to speak constantly, even over the main color analyst.
1) Detroit historically has the best fourth line in hockey, and historically uses its fourth line in big moments.
2) Detroit’s fourth line provided the 3-1 lead, scoring the final goal in the third period, and was playing very, very well.
3) If not up two late in the third, then when?
4) And this is the crucial point: The finals start with two games 21 hours apart, and three in four nights, and Detroit is the oldest team in the NHL. If there is any opportunity at any point for Babcock to play his fourth line late in a game, it is most beneficial to the Red Wings, and will pay off as the series goes on.
To me, it’s fairly simple, and Babcock should have been praised, not questioned.
Over at TSN.ca, today the Rangers’ off-season situation is analyzed by Scott Cullen. You can check it out by clicking here.
My lawn is calling me.