Mar 7 :: This One’s For The Children

Holy shit, that’s an actual NKOTB song title! And appropriate, as we’re entering our fourth game of H2H Pledge Games.

Anyway… I had the entire pre-game written, again using a Whitney Houston theme. But then I thought, ya know what… we’ve never done two previews using the same theme before, and I wasn’t quite sure Whitney was an appropriate jumping off point for such things. Besides, Larry Murphy and Ken Daniels combined to drop a massive bomb on the audience during the second period of the Wings/Predators game. It’s a bomb we can’t ignore. Yes, folks. Larry Murphy is beyond familiar with the New Kids.

As you can see above, Casey from Winging it in Motown fashioned an absolutely incredible ‘shop of the NEW New Kids on the Block. It must be spread throughout Red Wings Nation. But first, I pose a question: which Red Wing-related personality is the most like his New Kids alter ego? I think we can all agree that Murph is, clearly, Joey. Bertuzzi’s an obvious “Donnie” because of the legal issues, but Casey has chosen to fashion him a “Danny.”

As much as I love Drew Miller, I think he’d make a good alternate Donnie. Ya know…he’s good…but not quite as good as his brother.

The Red Wings and Blackhawks play an NBC matinee, 12:30pm Eastern. It’s the fifth meeting of the season — Detroit’s only won one, but that was when the lineup was closest to what we’re icing now. And it’s Oscar day, so let’s wrap it up, shall we? That blinking light in the rear of the audience seating means shut the fuck up, Pierre.

Each goal tonight is worth at least $27.50.
Matching TPL’s pledge of $2 per goal tonight are Natalie of The Scrappy Octopus, Drew from Nightmare on Helm Street, Rob from Etched in ColdJennbikegirlBrad BoswellSigSegFalt, and Sara from A Neuie Perspective, Dena, and Krononymous. Mike Serven has pledged $5 per goal and my pops is dropping 10% of the grand total. There are player-specific pledges as well, but they’ve become too numerous to list.

A win is worth at least $93.50.
Vicky Bash has pledged $26 per win, Mike Serven $19, Andy from Fight Night at the Joe $25 (for this game), Beanie $5, Nurse Nitz $5, CaptNorris5 $5. Plus the same 10%. Krononymous will donate an extra $5 for a shutout.
Game-specific pledges: 
Since this is an NBC broadcast that has nothing to do with the Penguins, we should all get ready to hear all about Sidney Crosby. Krononymous has pledged $2 for every gratuitous Crosby mention, $5 if they do an intermission story about him, $2 each time the Crosby/Talbot washing machine commercial airs. Like last game, TPL Mom has pledged $17 for each Patrick Eaves, Darren Helm, or Nick Lidstrom goal. 

1. Big time opponent. Good time to assert yourselves as a legit post-season team, kids.
2. The Wings are 2-1 since the Olympic Break and will need to stay at about .700 if they want to seriously consider making a good run at the playoffs. A win today is 3-for-4, and they need to stay on that kind of trend. 
3. The Nashville game was a huge game for H2H Pledges, nearly doubling the at-the-time best single-game fundraising mark, and easily tripling the craptastic Canucks effort. If the Wings can get a handful of goals, win this game, and hit a few other benchmarks, it might be another big one for the kids. This game, for obvious reasons, was everyone’s favorite to pledge a few random things. Let’s hope it pays off. 
The last meeting was January 17th. The Hawks won 4-3 in a shootout, but the Wings got goals from Zetterberg, Eaves, and Lidstrom. Datsyuk and Bertuzzi scored nifty markers in the shootout, but the good guys came up short. Scratched that night was Ville Leino, and injured was Lilja, Franzen, Williams, Kronwall, and Holmstrom. 
Being that we’ve done this four times before, here’s a crash course:
 :: Hossa and Kopecky are dipshits. I mean Blackhawks. Wait, both work in this case.
 :: Cleary and Williams are former Blackhawks. Neither by choice.
 :: Dustin Byfuglien. 

–Detroit jailsexed the hell out of Nashville, 5-2, on Friday. 
–Chicago defeated Vancouver, 6-3, also on Friday.
–Detroit Red Wings :: 30-22-12 (3rd in Central, 8th in West) :: 13-13-7 on the road. 
–Chicago Hawkblacks :: 43-16-5 (1st in Central, 1st in West) :: 25-6-2 at home.
Well if Maria had her way, we’d all know Patrick Eaves intimately, ifyouknowwhatimean. Instead, she’ll have to pretend she’s Nicklas Lidstrom’s testicle: which I’m pretty sure is the only private part to get anywhere near Patrick Sharp in quite some time. 

Mulo — Dangles — Homeslice
Vanilli — ZRock — Buckets
Shetuzz’ — Flapjax — SNP
Dolla Bill — Danger — Shingles
Shiny Nickel — Silver
ChooChoo — Lips
South Bend — Skull
Tiberius (starting)
Derek “La La La Tonight” Meech
Jonathan “I’ll Be Lovin’ You Forever” Ericsson
Kirk “Third and Your Fourth Kiss I Don’t Want to Miss” Maltby
Honorable Mentions
Todd “We’re Rouuuggghhh” Bertuzzi
Jimmy “Well I Guess Its A Brand New Day After All” Howard
Kenny “Tick Tick Tock Tock” Holland
Darren “I May Be Young But I’m No Beginner” Helm

STEP 1. Jimmy Howard has to be better than Cristobal Huet. On the surface, that doesn’t sound like it should be too difficult. Huet isn’t as bad as everyone pretends he is, but Jimmy Howard’s no slouch. If he plays better than his counterpart, we’re halfway home.
STEP 2. The Red Wings defenders can’t sleep walk through this game (I’m looking at you, Brian Rafalski and Brett Lebda). If they play strong and cut down on chances from Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews, and company, we’ll three-quarters of the way home.
STEP 3. Detroit’s big-guns, notably Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, and Johan Franzen, need to capitalize on the very few chances they’ll get. If they can net one early, they’ll be in very good shape.
STEP 4. I can give you more
STEP 5. Oh, all of these things have to happen for all sixty minutes.
STEP 6. I hate you, Pierre McDoucheCanoe.
STEP 7. I will have Danger Helm’s babby if he goes for two more against little brother. 
WHAT WE LEARNED against the Predators
The Wings win when they capitalize on their chances.