Blogs > From The Bleacher Seats

A roundup of news on sporting events, people and places in Southeast Michigan by columnist Jim Evans.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hurt feelings and worse in the NHL playoffs

I love playoff hockey.
I despise playoff hockey.
I love the intensity.
I hate the way the rules change.
Suddenly, once the regular season is over, it is all right to turn guys into steak tartare. Or Maypo. Or is that chunky Jiffy peanut butter?
Crush and mash and smash and geez, boys will be boys.
That is playoff hockey, they say.
I worry about the Red Wings.
They are a superior team, but they are not a physical team.
How many hits do you think Lidstrom can take? What about Rafalski? That is what opposing teams do; they start pounding the Red Wings.
If you’re taking volunteers, who on the Red Wings’ roster is going to respond to the physical challenge? I see Todd Bertuzzi, even at his advanced age, and that is about it.
Not saying players like Darren Helm and Dan Cleary are not gritty players.
But grit comes in bushels, not handfuls, in the playoffs.
The Wings could win the Cup. They are that good. The Wings could lose early. They are that vulnerable to injury.
I love the playoffs. I hate the playoffs.
Sorry, I have to go; the puck is dropping in Phoenix.


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