Hockeytown 4 Haiti Update

Just a reminder…

Head over to Winging it in Motown today to participate in our Game Thread. Each comment posted will send five cents to Haiti — and they need all the dollars they can get. Game time is 12:30pm, and the game airs on NBC (joy!).

It costs you nothing to comment and participate — unless, of course, you wish to contribute to the fund. If you feel like you can spare a few bucks, shoot Casey an e-mail at MrNorrisTrophy(at)

We encourage everyone out there to stop in and say hello, join us for what should be a great time for an even better cause. Go Red Wings — Go Red Cross.

Back to your regular scheduled TPL programming:

Bertuzzi sucks… Tiberius… Brett Lebda totally looks like a parking cone… Boohoo Chris Osgood… Shetuzzi Sighting… Hall and Oates reference… unsolicited boobies… Gator Gator Gator… Holy God I hate Todd Bertuzzi… glitter shirt… we miss you Michael Jackson… huzzah!… obscure movie reference… velociraptors… Goddamn it Todd Bertuzzi… Badger my ass, it’s probably Milhouse… Forbidden Love… The Leino Lounge… For real Brad May?… Scuttles… H2H… SNP… TOV… POS… NWA… RSV… Willi Vanilli… OH THE HELMANITY!… Flip is my homeboy… Spin-O-Tuzzi… Mulo… The Malocchio… tinfoil hat… The Fix… Best Name Nominee… Bob Seger… JJ Special… I Told You So… OMFGZtuzzi!… See what I did there?… Fat cheerleader analogy… chicken dinner… injury, injury, injury, call-up, injury… Protuzzi/Contuzzi… KABOOM!… Morning Jo… ManTuzzi… Chuck Woolery… Kris Newbury: Most Fascinating Man on the Planet… strange Italian anecdote… bodily function mishap…

Holy hell, we’ve had some fun around here, haven’t we?

If It Bleeds, We Can Kill It

Jimmy Howard is Superman. He was hung out to dry, particularly in that first period, and came up with 46 saves on 48 Predator shots. At one point in the first, he got a nub on a breakaway attempt, and seemed to be playing other-wordly, like the Kings game. Make no mistake, the Wings did everything they could to lose, what with the various turnovers and whatnot, but Howard seemed tired of giving away points to in-conference rivals. Good on him.

Hey speaking of turnovers, how bout that Bertuzzi pass to no one but a pack of Predators? Apparently he nearly missed the game with a groin injury, but something tells me a 100% healthy Todd Bertuzzi makes that same, stupid ass play. I wouldn’t be the Michael Petrella you all know and love if I didn’t pick on him.

Welcome back, Willi Vanilli! He opened the scoring by re-directing Miller’s re-direction of Flip’s shot. An all-around strong game from Williams, particularly for a first game back from a long injury. The Wings wouldn’t take the lead into the first intermission as Francis BOOYAH! scored in the closing minute…

Nik Kronwall nearly lost his face, as a skate totally connected with his half-shield. That’s why everyone should wear a visor. He could have lost an eye, easily.

Red-hot Nicklas Lidstrom continued along those lines as he cocked his cannon (stop thinking dirty) right around the blue line and unleashed hell from the top of the circle. Chi-chick boom. That’s what 2-1 looks like.

I tell ya what, Drew Miller looks really good in Homer’s office. He found his way to the crease twice, and two goals came of it. Who knew? 3-1 Good Guys. P.S. From now on, Drew Miller will be referred to as SNP (h/t @wkfink), which obviously stands for Salt N Pepa.

We all know the relationship the Wings have with two-goal leads, and Shea Weber cut the lead to one with a skipping puck that looked like it hit something on the way. I didn’t bother with the replay, because it was just a matter of time, so why punish myself further?

Hank sealed it from just behind the goal line, on a shot he banked off of Dan Ellis and into the net. BUT WAIT! We gotta go to Toronto to see if there’s any way we can possibly shaft the Red Wings. Thankfully, for once, common sense prevailed and the goal stood. Winner winner chicken dinner.

It was revealed that the Red Wings are working on a conditioning stint for Andreas Lilja. He’s to spend three games with the Griffins, as early as next week. That means he’s coming back, folks. And soon. I suspect it’s Brett Lebda on his way out. I was chatting with Hollis during the game and wondered aloud if we could get a second rounder for him. Somehow, I doubt it. But this upcoming draft is damn good and I’d do a backflip to get a 2nd round pick for him.

1. Well, the effort wasn’t there for sixty minutes, but the Wings were bailed out by Tiberius and got timely goals from the real leaders of the club.
2. Drew Miller played a hell of a game. More like that, and it’ll be impossible to scratch him. He’s making a case for himself…
3. Jimmy Howard played like the #1 he is. And needed to be.
4. Willi Vanilli made his return felt. Good on him. Forgotten no more.

What’s next?
Penguins on Sunday. Join us in the WIM thread for a Haiti fundraising event.

I know it’s TPL policy to greet you fine folks with “deh hotnezz” after a loss, but we had to be prepared for the unspeakable again. I had a young lass lined up, and I think he got excited to see who I’d come up with for my first LossCandy Girl. So, in celebration of a big win…. I present Christina Milian.

Hockey photo credit: Paul Sancya, AP

Jan 29 :: Odiforous, Orphalactygal, Nominations

Maybe if the Wings were tearing pieces of clothing off of 
Kristen Bell for each win, they wouldn’t play like they have been.


The Red Wings host the Predators. 7:30pm. Friday night. The Joe. 
1. Jason Williams is back in. Remember him? Me either. Shut up, Dorn. 
2. A bad start to this week. We needed to pick up 6 points or more, and we’ve only gotten one. The most we can get is five. And make no mistake, we need each of the remaining four. In case you haven’t noticed (“and judging by the attendance, you haven’t”), the Wings are still on the outside looking in.
3. Hey, a head-to-head with a team directly above us in the standings. Stop me if you’ve heard this before…but this seems like a great opportunity to blah blah blah blah blah.
The last time these two teams played was December 12th, at Nashville. The Wings were 3-2 overtime winners, with Chris Osgood in net. Drew Miller scored and Todd “OMFGZ!!!1!” Bertuzzi had his second of back-to-back two-goal efforts.
Since this is another repeat, here’s a quick rundown: Andy Delmore is the only player in either system to have spent time in the other. Patric Hornqvist is the BNN.
–Detroit got pimp-smacked, 5-2, on Wednesday. IT WASN’T OZZIE’S FAULT! LEAVE CHRISTNY ALONE!
–Nashville lost 3-2, to the BJs, on Tuesday.
–Detroit Red Wings :: 25-19-9 (3rd in Central, 9th in West) :: 11-11-5 on the road.
–Kansas City Scouts :: 29-20-3 (2nd in Central, 7th in West) :: 14-10-1 at home.
Hey, did you know they’re making a new Predators film? It’ll star known badass Adrien Brody, Morpheus, the Mexican guy from Grindhouse, and Eric Forman. Sounds like a gas!
Williams is in. Stuart left the Wild game after tweaking a shoulder, but apparently that was just a precaution: he’s in. Justin Abdelkader was sent back to Grand Rapids. Either Ville Leino or Brad May will be in the lineup – the other will be scratched. Same goes for Brett Lebda and Derek Meech. But the following are the morning skate lines…
Zetterberg — Datsyuk — Cleary
Williams — Filppula — Bertuzzi
Draper — Helm — Eaves
May — Miller — Maltby
Lidstrom — Rafalski
Kronwall — Stuart
Lebda — Ericsson
Howard (starting)
Nicknames inspired by Big Red Machine‘s Ellen and her love for Major League. A collaborative effort ensued…
Ville “Uh Oh! I Don’t Think This One’s Got the Distance” Leino
Derek “We’ve Got Uniforms and Everything – It’s Really Great” Meech
Andreas “We Shoulda Gotten The Live Chicken” Lilja
Johan “How’s Your Wife and My Kids” Franzen
Tomas “Personally, I Think We Got Hosed on That Call” Holmstrom
Honorable Mentions
Chris “You May Think I’m Shit Now But Someday You’ll Be Sorry You Cut Me” Osgood
Mikael “Juuuuuuust A Bit Outside” Samuelsson
Brad “Want Me To Drag Him Outta Here…Kick the Shit Out of Him?” May
Ville “Don’t Give Me This Ole Bullshit” Leino (H/T @mserven)
1. This is one of those times that you need to throw caution to the wind and make it happen. There will be no divine intervention (insert token “I say Fuck You Jobu I do it myself” line here), it’ll have to happen between whistles. No excuses – the team is nearly back to full strength, and this is the goddamn Predators we’re talking about – just get it done. Sixty minutes. SIX ZERO. 
2. Now that almost everyone is back in the lineup, it’s crunch time for the bottom half (Maltby, Miller, May, Leino) to show who stays and who goes. Obviously, not all of those guys will get a chance all at once — so the ones that are in have to prove they belong.
3. Jimmy Howard is back in net – he’ll need to show he’s not burnt out because Mike Babcock made it fairly clear on The Fan that Howie’s going to be the go-to guy when points are needed (read: now until April).
4. How’s Willy Vanilly going to look in his return to the lineup?
WHAT WE LEARNED vs. the Wild
Zero minutes of effort won’t equal a win. Who knew…
I asked JJ to fill in this time around, and told him not to hold back. Anything goes. And, like always, he delivered the goods. No text. Only photo:

Sexy. Get a win for this…lovely…woman?

Totally Looks Like…

***UPDATE 2***
Alright, here’s the deal. Rob and I decided we wanted the “prize” to be something completely cheesy – it’s only fitting. So, we’ll leave the contest open for a week — until next Friday, February 5th — and then TPL Mom will pick the winner from all of our hilarious submissions. I’ll get in touch with the winner to get their address and send them a (wait for it….) Marian Hossa – IN BANNER FORM! It was a gift from the season ticket office, and no one wants it. Perhaps it can adorn your dartboard, or replace the toilet paper roll, or be crafted into a voodoo doll of sorts.

A “prize” will be announced in the morning (and by morning, I mean afternoon). To make things fair, TPL Mom is going to be your judge… thus removing from contention the Bertuzzi/Manson TLL which is DAMN good.

Keep ’em coming. This is hilarious.

My mom wants to know… “doesn’t Unfaithful’s Oliver Martinez look like Jonathan Ericsson?”

And so the next TPL contest is borne… which celebrity/actor/actress/person most looks like your favorite Red Wing? Bonus points for the best Todd Bertuzzi “TLL.” Rob and I will brainstorm some sort of “prize” for the best examples.

Go to to build your own…

Bring ’em on…

Hockeytown 4 Haiti

If you haven’t already heard, Casey at Winging it in Motown is following the lead of many of the SB Nation blogs and hosting a game thread in an effort to raise funds for the devastating earthquake in Haiti. This Sunday, when the Wings take on the Penguins, five cents will be donated to the cause for every comment made during the game. Casey approached me a few weeks ago, and I’m excited to be a part of this, particularly since I hadn’t yet gotten off of my booty and dug into my pocket.

Our goal is to have $1,000 raised and ready for donation. As of this writing, we’re a little more than halfway there. If you’re interested in adding a few dollars to the fund, shoot Casey an email at MrNorrisTrophy(at)

Some other important things to note:

  • People can donate if they WANT, but are not obligated.
  • It’s free to comment in the game thread.
  • All donations will go to the Red Cross after the event is over.
  • All donations will be acknowledged in a thank you post (unless they wish to remain anonymous).

Please drop by the game thread on Sunday. It’s always a good time, but Sunday is for a good cause.

I blame Mike Babcock for letting in all those goals.

Approximately 18 square feet to shoot at…

Now now now… dry your eyes. I’m not pinning this one entirely on Chris Osgood, nor am I going to claim that Jimmy Howard wins this game. That right there, folks, was sixty minutes of uninspired, emotionless, no-fire hockey from everyone that wasn’t Pavel Datsyuk.

It’d be swell to get more than two goals from the Red Wings. Two doesn’t get you wins much anymore — particularly with Dan Cloutier 2.0 in net. But, funny how Tuesday five goals against was “getting burnt” and five goals Wednesday was all the defense. Interesting.

I know we all rag on our “beat writers” for being slow to the trigger or downright absent, but check out the first three words of the headlines from the following publications:

MLive :: Shaky Chris Osgood…
Freep :: Osgood Struggles Again… (note: the title has since been changed)
DetNews :: Chris Osgood Rusty…

Look, I’ll ignore the .800 save percentage for a night (even though no one should ever ignore such abominations)…or that there were two different examples of allowing two goals in 70 seconds or less (one of which had a Red Wings goal jammed in the middle), and leave it at this: Chris Osgood spent more time on his knees than Jenna Jameson – and couldn’t seem to react appropriately when a pass went across the slot. The first goal, he hardly even flinched toward the eventual goal scorer. I’m sure everyone will make excuses for him (though, he needs zero help in that department lately) and say that those goals were re-directed, or beautifully set up, or gifts from the Heavens, or whatever… he needs to be better, period. Particularly after running his mouth. And I’m confident that’s something we can all agree on.

Minnesota played like they haven’t played since Saturday. The Red Wings played like they played the night before. Oh wait, really? Nevermind then.

So what happened to Todd Bertuzzi? Oh that’s right, he’s not directly benefiting from playing with Henrik Zetterberg and/or Pavel Datsyuk. Who — WHO I ASK! — could have seen that coming?

Brad Stuart left the game — apparently — and didn’t return after suffering an upper body injury. I say apparently because FSNorth made no mention of it, and I never caught up. Hollis thinks he’s out 2-3 weeks with a bruised ego. ZING! Upon further review, he has a “sprained shoulder” and will be re-evaluated Thursday. Why not?

The upcoming schedule
FRI :: Nsh :: Jason Williams in :: Brad May AND Ville Leino Out. It’s like a really lame Christmas present.
SUN :: Pit :: Tomas Holmstrom in :: Brad May, Ville Leino, and presumably Justin Abdelkader Out.

New prospect rankings are available at Red Wings Central. I’ll let you look through the list (and you really should), but here is their Top Five: Tatar, Kindl, Smith, McCollum, Nyquist.

1. Osgood needs to play well to back up his mouth. FALSE.
2. Kronwall delivers more of the goods. TRUE, I guess. He nearly scored and certainly scared the hell out of Martin Havlat.
3. Who will step up in Lidstrom-like fashion? Pavel Datsyuk. That’s who.
4. Patrick Eaves. I remember seeing him on the ice, but have no opinion.
5. Todd Bertuzzi Countdown. Still at five. The ill-timed penalty count, however, is off the charts. Not that it matter this night anyway.

What’s next?
Friday. Nashville. Willy Vanilla (HI BAROQUE AND WINGEDUP!) might play. That should make all the difference in the world. He plays goal, right?

Photo Credit: Jim Mone, AP

Jan 27 :: That’s Not Lake Minnetonka

No Sign of Brain.

Before getting started, it’s worth mentioning that Johan Franzen has been cleared to play. He’ll need some conditioning, but all signs point to him being two weeks out.


The Red Wings are back on the road, this time visiting Minnesota. Puck drops at 8pm Eastern, which is relevant because I missed the first twelve minutes of yesterday’s game, incorrectly assuming that Versus could adapt to the Joe’s long-standing tradition of starting games at 7:37. Way to go, assholes!
1. Detroit is coming off of their most disappointing loss (which occurred when they found a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of certain victory). How will they rebound?
2. Chris Osgood starts. Because why wait allll the way until overtime to be disappointed? Okay, calm down, children. It was a joke. In all seriousness, it’s a move that had to be made to avoid Howard exhaustion and to prove Babcock learned from the error of playing the same ‘tender in both games the last back-to-back set.
3. If you aren’t already, follow @RedWingsOV and @H2Hockeytown. See here or here for reasons why.
The Wings and Wild played a few days ago – January 21st. The Wings were eight-round shootout winners, 4-3, and propelled themselves (momentarily) into the 7th seed in the West. They currently find themselves in the 8th spot, so (stop me if you’ve heard this before) this is a good opportunity to solidify that standing.
We just did this, so here’s a reminder: there are no former Wings in St. Paul, and there are no former Wildren in Detroit. The BNN is Cal Clutterbuck. Obvi.
–I don’t want to talk about it.
–While Detroit is playing their NINTH set of back-to-backs this season, Minnesota should be fairly rested, since they haven’t played since SATURDAY (a 4-2 win against Columbus). Must be nice to, ya know, rest.
–Detroit Red Wings :: 25-18-9 (3rd in Central, 8th in West) :: 11-10-5 on the road.
–Minnesota State-Mankato :: 25-23-4 (4th in Northwest, 12th in West). 17-6-2 at home.
Mikko Koivu :: Guillaume Latendresse :: Owen “Picks His Corners” Nolan :: Brent Burns :: Bear Grylls :: Niklas Backstrom

Zetterberg — Datsyuk — Cleary
Miller — Filppula — Bertuzzi
Draper — Helm — Eaves
May — Abdelkader — Maltby
Lidstrom — Rafalski
Meech — Stuart
Kronwall — Ericsson
Osgood (starting)
Brett “I Ain’t Like Those Other Guys You Hang Around” Lebda
Ville “Party Over Oops Out of Time” Leino


Andreas “If We Can’t Make Babies, Maybe We Can Make Some Time” Lilja
Johan “It Means Forever And That’s a Mighty Long Time” Franzen
Jason “This Is What It Sounds Like When Doves Cry” Williams
Tomas “People Call Me Rude, I Wish We Were All Nude” Holmstrom (that’s for you, Nat)
Honorable Mention
Brad “I Never Seen a Pretty Girl Look So Tough” May
Derek “The Kind You Find at a Second Hand Store” Meech


1. Chris Osgood needs to play well enough to back up his mouth. Get it? Back up?

2. After throwing the smokescreen up that he might rest Kronwall after one game back, Babcock backed off when he realized that it meant Derek Meech AND Brett Lebda would go back into the lineup. Hoping Kronwall delivers more of the goods in his second game back.
3. After an heroic effort from Nick Lidstrom last night, who will step up today after completely letting the captain down?
4. Patrick Eaves. That is all.
5. The Bertuzzi Goal Countdown is sitting pretty at five right now. Five more goals and the TPL banner is changed for the rest of the season. This would be a great time to continue a goalless skid (for him, not the team). Also, doesn’t he want to hear the Bertuzzi Song from Andy? Come on, Todd.

WHAT WE LEARNED vs. the Coyotes



I’m SO Jonathan.

Hi hockey fans! Do you feel like helping me make an ass of myself? Of COURSE you do!

Our dear friend Chris Hollis, of Motown Wings and Obstructed View fame, with help from Natalie of The Scrappy Octopus, have come up with a little side-bet leading up to the Herm 2 Hockeytown game. Involving me. Aren’t they sweet?

Last night, prior to the game, Hollis says to me, “I have an idea, but I want to run it by you…” Skeptical, yet oddly thankful, I ask him to proceed, knowing that it can be one of two things: a question about logistics and TOV or something so completely off-the-charts ridiculous.

Silly me, even pretending it could have been the first one.

Long story short, I’ve agreed to wear a “shirt showing my true love for Bertuzzi” should @RedWingsOV or @H2Hockeytown reach certain benchmarks on Twitter. I know nothing of the shirt’s design, but I’ve heard the following words as “clues”:

1) Pink.
2) Glitter.
3) Boy band.

Here are the rules — if EITHER of those Twitter accounts gets 500 followers, I will wear this glorious work of art for the first period of the H2H game in March. If either account gets 750 followers, it becomes two periods. If either reaches 1,000 followers, I’ll wear it the entire damn day.


In addition to seeing me wear this ridiculous shirt for the entire night, EVERYONE will be treated to a LIVE rendition of Man-Tuzzi, as sung – karaoke-style – by TOV Super Producer Brian Kiernicki. Anyone who listed to the latest episode knows of its awesomeness. Frankly, as much as I’m terrified of what this shirt will look like, I kinda wanna see this performance. I’m so torn.

Some good will come of all this… for every benchmark met, TOV will make additional monetary donations to Children’s Hospital of Michigan. So, if you think about it, I’m offering to go out — in public — like a twelve year old girl like it’s 1994 for the children. Won’t somebody please think of the children?

As of this writing, there’s a long way to go. @RedWingsOV has 183 followers, and @H2Hockeytown has 106. Get followin’, world. For more information, check out TOV’s announcement of said ridiculousness.

Jan 26 :: Mamase Mamasa Mamacusa

The Red Wings host the Coyotes at the Joe. This is the fourth and final matchup between the two teams this season. The Wings are 2-0-1 against Phoenix this season, outscoring the Dogs 9-6. Let’s keep that streak up, eh?
1. Detroit starts tonight in the eighth posit- wait, what? For realz? STAY THERE. Unlike last week, there’s no IMMEDIATE danger of slipping out of the 8th spot, since Calgary isn’t in action tonight. But pretty soon here, the Wings have to shove their stake into the ground and say THIS IS MINE. YOU CAN’T HAVE. NOT YOURS. It’s about time they want to be startin’ something (see what I did there? Yesterday was 7 months since MJ’s death).
2. Niklas Kronwall makes his triumphant return to the lineup, which is awesome news for a variety of reasons: A) Niklas Kronwall comes back and B) Derek Meech goes away. Bring on the Boomstick.
3. Todd Bertuzzi is riding a two-game goal-scoring streak into tonight’s game. Getting REALLY close to having to change the TPL banner.
The last time the Wings and Coyotes met was January 2nd. The Wings won 4-1, with Howard in net, with goals from Darren Helm, Pavel Datsyuk, and a pair from Homer.
A refresher: Lang and Anders Erickson is in Phoenix. May and Cleary now Red Wings. BNN: Zbynek Michalek.
–Detroit lost to LA, 3-2, on Saturday
–Phoenix lost to Washington, 4-2, on Saturday
–Detroit Red Wings :: 25-18-8 (3rd in Central, 8th in West) :: 14-8-3 at home.
–Phoenix Coyotes :: 29-18-5 (2nd in Pacific, 5th in West) :: 10-10-3 on the road.
Shane Doan :: Matthew Lombardi :: Piper Perabo :: Peter Mueller :: Ed Jovanovski :: Ilya Bryzgalov
Zetterberg — Datsyuk — Cleary
Miller — Filppula — Bertuzzi
Draper — Helm — Eaves
May — Abdelkader — Maltby
Lidstrom — Rafalski
Kronwall — Stuart
Lebda — Ericsson
Howard (starting)
Ville “Oh, I’m the Asshole?” Leino
Derek “This is the Guy Behind the Guy Behind the Guy” Meech
Andreas “What — In Case Somebody Steps to You, Snoop Dogg?” Lilja
Johan “I’m Going to Make Wayne Gretzky’s Head Bleed for Superfan #99 Over Here” Franzen
Jason “I Drive a Cavalier. It’s Red.” Williams
Tomas “Okay, Fine, I’ll Ask: Where Do the High School Girls Hang Out Around Here?” Holmstrom
1. (Broken Record Alert) This is a big opportunity against a team above us in the standings to A) gain some ground in the playoff race and B) distance ourselves from other teams chasing the 8.
2. Jimmy Howard is back in net, after a few more days break than we’re used to. It’s the first half of a back-to-back, so one would assume (and they might be wrong) that Osgood is playing Wednesday. Big opportunity for a head-to-head comparison.
3. How does Niklas Kronwall look in his return? I’m sure he’ll have to shake off some rust, but he has to improve the blueline corps.
WHAT WE LEARNED vs. the Kings
So… there’s no security on the way to the rafters?
I’m tired of talking about Coyotes I “want.” None of them are that exciting. I’ll take a different route tonight and take a Phoenix I covet. I’m going with Famke Janssen as Jean Grey:

Bertuzzi AND Hall and Oates? SOLD.

The seventh episode of The Obstructed View is ready to make sweet, sweet love to your ears. Follow the link, and give it a listen. NOW!
This time around, we’re treated to Malik from Snapshots, Tyler from The Triple Deke, and Ellen from Big Red Machine as the trio joins Hollis and Brian.
My favorite line from the whole thing? “I have zero wood around me.”