I don't know what the Wings did to deserve this, but it's getting ridiculous: Chris Chelios left the game in the first period not long after blocking a shot with the unprotected back of his right leg.
Mike Babcock told the media after the game that it might be something of a fracture, though he's not sure if it's the kind Cheli could play on (non-displaced).
The Wings played the remainder of the game with five defensemen, three of whom are effectively rookies. The defense came up big, with first time NHLer Jonathan Ericsson looking like a veteran together with a similarly poised Derek Meech. Ericsson is the real deal, folks, and Meech is more impressive every time I see him play.
After that performance, it's hard to be worried about the defense in the playoffs, to be honest. I say that in spite of the fact that the Wings still lost 1-0. They called it a moral victory on the radio and it's hard to disagree. Still, I can do without the moral victories. That's what Monday's win was as well, and the team lost Nick Lidstrom. Tonight it was Chelios. Any more moral victories like that and there won't be much of a team left.
Anyway, I'm sure there will be more on Chelios in the morning. It seems a safe bet that he won't be in the lineup against the Canucks, which would mean the very, very green (i.e. not NHL-ready) Jakub Kindl or the fairly steady Garrett Stafford could get the call.
Oh yeah. Anyone else think Dion Phaneuf should be facing league discipline for that vicious-but-somehow-unpenalized hit on Tomas Kopecky? Five games, please. Maybe more.