After One Period of Play...

David StearnsAnalyst IJune 2, 2009

10 Nov 2001:  Nicklas Lidstrom #5 of the Detroit Red Wings looks on before a defensive end faceoff during the second period of their game against the Kings at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The Los Angeles Kings went on to win in OT 3-2. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: J. Victor Decolongon/ALLSPORT

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After one period of play in Game three...

Quite a different series if this continues. The home-ice factor seems to make a difference in some regard.

When we look at the last change made by the home team, Pittsburgh definitely has an advantage as to keeping Crosby from matching up with Zetterberg. So far, Babcock has found so good opportunities in the action have Zetterberg change on the fly. But, with all of that juggling going on, can a coach lose sight of other things happening in the game if he becomes too focused on changes and lineup matches?

This could prove to be exhausting, but the new formulation of Malkin, Crosby, and Kunitz seems to alleviate some pressure as to when Zetterberg and his crew join the ice.

Rafalski and Lidstrom are the favorited defensive pairing to get sent to battle against the Crosby line. They're proving to be moderately effective, but can they handle double the threat with Crosby and Malkin playing a line together? The second and third period remain...at least.

Osgood allows two goals on seven shots? Ouch. Fleury allows two goals on 12 shots? Ok. So, now it's a war of talent.

Zetterberg already has a goal and an assist. Letang already has a goal and an assist.

Now, the waiting game. Will it be Abdelkader for Detroit or Adams for Pittsburgh to get the next goal? Truth is, the next goal could come from anybody, but the offensive pressure by Pittsburgh has seen a lot of improvement compared to games one & two.

This all coming from a Red Wings fan of 14 years. Taking it from my birth heritage of being a Sabres fan (if I weren't an overall hockey fan), I should be caring less at this point. Just kidding, of course.

Enjoy the second period!

~The Rant Man~