Buckets Out, Howard Starts Again

If it’s not a jaw, it’s a shoulder…

And Cleary makes six. Via Bruce MacLeod’s Twitter,

Dan Cleary has a separated shoulder and will be out four weeks. Ville Leino returns to the Red Wings lineup.

Son of a bitch. That means Lilja, Franzen, Filppula, Williams, Kronwall, and Cleary will all be out. At the same time. Ville Leino comes back into the regular lineup — equally son of a bitch. No word on whether Holland will hold steady with his “we’re going with what we have” company line.

A few minutes later, Bruce lets us know that Jimmy Howard will start AGAIN — Friday vs. Anaheim. What’s going on here? Is Howard actually positioning himself to be the de-facto starter? I know that’s stupid talk because no one will ever start over Chris Osgood for some reason, but this will be Howie’s third in a row and sixth of seven. That’s the kind of workload starting goaltenders have.

Photo Credit: Dave Sandford, Getty Images

8 thoughts on “Buckets Out, Howard Starts Again”

  1. I was thinking the same thing about Howard… while I understand riding a hot goaltender, it still strikes me as odd. Doesn't Oz need to get games in? What happened to Babcock's idea of a rotation? I was wondering if this is somehow similar to Oz's "break" last February, though he hasn't nearly been as atrocious. He's called himself out to be better, so let's hope he's chomping at the bit when he does make his next start (Saturday?)

  2. Yup, I'm with you. I'm sure that with back-to-back games, Osgood will be in on Saturday. But, yes, Osgood needs to get starts to be considered — ya know — the STARTER. Here are the facts:

    December
    Howard – 4 starts (1-2) [80%]
    Osgood – 1 start (0-1) [20%]

    November
    Howard – 8 starts (6-2) [57%]
    Osgood – 6 starts (2-3-1) [43%]

    October
    Howard – 3 starts (0-2-1) [25%]
    Osgood – 9 starts (5-2-2) [75%]

    It's certainly trending to Howard. Osgood was the unquestioned started in October, but slowly, the tides have turned to J-Ho.

  3. I'm debating crawling into a hole and sending all 8 of my readers over here. I'll re-emerge sometime in 2010 when we have a lineup that looks more like the Red Wings and less like the Islanders. Even though that might be an upgrade at this point…

  4. I welcome all eight of your readers, but to avoid projectile vomiting, think of it this way:

    When all of these guys come back, they should be uber-motivated to make up for lost time, propelling the Red Wings not only into the playoffs, but to make some noise when they get there.

  5. Balls to the Cleary injury and balls-yes! to Jimmy starting again.

    At this point I look at it like this. Plain and simple Jimmy's giving us the best chance to win each night. Our offense can't produce at all and the lower the GAA the better.

  6. Yes, Howard is giving the Red Wings the best chance to win. Evidenced by Chris Osgood's inability to win a game since November 5th.

    Feel like he's been five wins away from 400 for like six years now…

  7. You know, I want our injured a**kickers back as much as the next fan, but I still want a chance to smack the current roster upside the head. This is not a talentless bunch of placeholders (hello? 2 of the top 2-way players in the damned league!) that we should have to just suck up and deal with until the big guys come back. These guys CAN win and HAVE won games. What they need is consistency and precision, and that's not a matter of talent as much as it is drive and discipline.

    Lately, I sit here during the games sounding like Herb Brooks from the movie Miracle: "Poise and control, boys! Poise and control!"

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